International Partnership to Support Tanzania

Through Gilchrist’s International Partnership with Nkoaranga Lutheran Hospital’s Hospice and Palliative Care program in Tanzania, the two organizations share information and wisdom, exploring each other’s medical and cultural practices.

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Just as we here in the United States are coping with the challenges of COVID-19, our hospice partners in Tanzania are bracing for widespread starvation, illness, and death due to the virus.

A Message from Dr. Paul Mmbando

Our five colleagues at Nkoaranga Hospital’s Hospice and Palliative Care Program, who treat over 5,000 patients annually, are scared. Imagine being on the front lines fighting COVID-19 with nothing to protect you but a bucket of dirty water.

Support to Our Partner Hospice

Our international partnership is sponsored by Global Partners in Care, which encourages the creation of such partnerships to help support end-of-life care in developing countries. The Gilchrist/Nkoaranga partnership is one of more than 37 programs linking end-of-life care organizations in 17 U.S. states with programs in 10 countries in Africa.

International Partnership in Tanzania

Nkoaranga serves about 1,300 terminally ill patients daily in the rugged, mountainous Arusha region of Tanzania, which continues to be hit hard by the AIDS epidemic; 76% of Nkoaranga’s patients suffer from HIV/AIDS, 3% from a diagnosed cancer, and 21% from a host of other diseases. Through our partnership, Gilchrist provides the financial support that allows Nkoaranga to continue to operate and expand to meet the needs of its patients. Nkoaranga staff have visited Baltimore, and Gilchrist staff have visited Tanzania in an effort to better understand how each of us provides care.

Much has been accomplished in our work in Tanzania.  Some successes are:

  • An ambulance was purchased to allow staff to travel to patients in remote villages
  • Laptops and a printer were provided to Nkoaranga’s staff to improve work efficiency and reporting
  • Funding for the salaries of the Nkoaranga Palliative Care team, including Dr. Bakari, the regions first clinician in Palliative Care
  • Covid-kits and PPE equipment were supplied to patients, their families, and staff at the height of the pandemic
  • The funding of a nation-wide training event on Palliative care

There is much that still needs to be done in Tanzania, including addressing the issues of poverty, lack of food, lack of access to medication, unreliable transport, and aging medical facilities. Ongoing priority needs at Nkoaranga are additional PPE and Covid-kit  supplies, gas and vehicle maintenance, durable medical equipment, funding for patient and community education, and on-going training for staff.

Gilchrist’s commitment to support our partner in hospice in Tanzania is made possible by the generosity of our donors at home, volunteers, and our fundraising initiatives. For more information on upcoming events benefiting Tanzania, or how you can help, please contact Caitie Dailey at 410.443.6504 or cdailey@gilchristcares.org or visit our calendar.

Tanzania Children

Gilchrist’s commitment to support our partner in hospice in Tanzania is made possible by the generosity of our donors at home, volunteers, and our fundraising initiatives.