Volunteering in Africa

World Medical Fund was founded in 1997 with the mission "To work with local communities to create opportunities for the world's most vulnerable children to live safe, healthy and happy lives".

 

6311c4965763da7253ccc71d49ee8c2d.gifOur organization receives a significant number of requests from people wishing to do something to help those less fortunate than themselves.

We rely on donations - without which we cannot perform our vital work - and we need volunteers. Over the past five years we have had people from all works of life including doctors, computer programmers, students and managers who had come out to work on our projects in Malawi - and all have agreed that they have experienced the most exciting time of their lives!

Where we work is where the need is - i.e. it is remote. In the township of Nkhotakota where we are based there are few diversions so plenty of good books are a must.

World Medical Fund was founded in 1997 with the mission "To work with local communities to create opportunities for the world's most vulnerable children to live safe, healthy and happy lives".

 

Our work in Africa began in one of the least-known and least-developed regions of Malawi, with a community based programme caring for the children orphaned by the HIV/AIDS pandemic. It soon became clear that none of the children in the remote villages had any form of access to medical care, denied by the real problems of poverty, lack of transport and the reality that in a family living well below the poverty line, only the able bodied adults, who can work in the fields to produce food are considered worthy of investment in health care.

These children suffer and die unnecessarily, most often from illnesses such as malaria, which are cheaply and easily treatable if only the diagnostic skills and medicine are in place. For this is a world in which the government district hospitals - where treatment is free - have few skilled staff, the pharmacy shelves are usually empty and they are regarded by the local community as just a place to go and die. The Mission Hospitals - where usually there are clinical staff and medicine is available - charge for all treatments at a price well beyond the means of the poor.

Our programme fills this vital gap; it takes desperately-needed medical care to where it is needed, in the villages. It utilises a 4x4 Landrover, staffed by Malawi clinical officers and nurse and equipped with diagnostic tools and well-stocked with medicine.

Over 40,000 sick children have been treated in the last 12 months at less than US$2 (£1) each and young lives are saved every day.

You can find out more about us at: http://www.worldmedicalfund.org

 

Author: Michael Burt