Democratic Republic of Congo
The second largest country of Africa, full of paradoxes. On one hand, it is rich in natural resources (including cobalt, copper, coltan, crude oil, diamonds, gold); on the other hand, its inhabitants are among the poorest in the world. For decades, the DRC has been suffering from prolonged conflicts that have led to one of the most severe humanitarian crises in the world.
- 77% of the population live in extreme poverty for less than $1.90 a day
- 16% of the country’s population, i.e. over 13 million people, require immediate humanitarian assistance
- 13,6 million people are deprived of access to safe water sources and proper sanitary and hygienic facilities
- numerous outbreaks of deadly diseases, including measles, malaria, cholera and Ebola
- about 10% of all malaria deaths in sub-Saharan Africa occurred here
Meet Ania. Ania is 10 years old and is from Ntamugenga. She lives just a few steps away from our hospital. She’s familiar with doctors and the hospital and knows that vaccines sometimes hurt a bit and medications don’t always taste good. She also knows that they always help her feel better, though. She did not hesitate to reach out to us today when she started running a high fever and experiencing pain all over. After we did some tests, we found out that Ania has malaria. Luckily, since she came to see us immediately, her condition wasn’t too bad. She received medication, returned home and will be as good as new in just a few days.
We share a lot of stories about children’s difficult battles, patients who arrive at our facilities in poor health, often close to death. We fight for their lives every day. Often these children are from remote regions and have never had access to healthcare. They hear about us through word of mouth and reach out as their last resort. But we also look after patients like Ania, who have known about us for years due to their proximity and, as a result, know to reach out to us when they need to see a doctor.
Our presence in Ntamugenga has been raising awareness among people from neighboring villages for years. The area in which people know how to recognize the first symptoms of malaria increases by the week. This is a result of our long-term work in the region and a source of pride for us. You, too, should be proud because it is thanks to your daily support that the world is becoming a better place, little by little.
In Congo, we often have to put out fires and respond to an ever-changing situation in the region. The blood drive is still ongoing. We need over 1,000 units of blood every year. We encourage you to donate! The blood we collect help saves lives and the cost of one bag can double any day and reach $30. By participating in the blood drive, you save the lives of patients, for whom we are the last resort. Those patients include many children – almost half of the blood we need for transfusions goes to children under the age of five who are in the severe stages of malaria.
Today, however, remember our project “High Five us!”. It is your systematic commitment to this project that allows us to not only effectively respond to urgent needs, but to also accompany people on a daily basis, increase their awareness, provide a sense of security and immediate help, expanding our reach and produce good in places where evil deprives people of hope, health and ultimately their lives.