Tanzanian Rotarians and healthcare providers along with Meaford Rotarians Sonja and David Glass

Meaford Rotary Supports Tanzanian Hospital

While many are aware of the local impact that Rotary Clubs have in their community, it is a surprise to some, that Rotary clubs have a major impact in developing countries as well. 
Over the last year, the Rotary Club of Meaford has been working to develop a relationship with the Rotary Club of Nansio, Ukerewe Island, Tanzania.  Ukerewe is the largest island in Lake Victoria and the largest inland island in Africa.
Two members of the Meaford Rotary club have been travelling to Tanzania each year for the last 5 years with the Canadian African Community Health Alliance (CACHA).  CACHA is a non-governmental organization that partners with healthcare providers to bring healthcare to rural African communities.  Together, Canadians and Tanzanians partner on programs for disease treatment, support and education for their most vulnerable populations. 
The Meaford Rotary club decided that they would leverage the work that these Rotarians were doing through CACHA and provide further benefit to the people of Ukerewe Island.  Rotarians from both Meaford and Nansio, along with healthcare leaders on the island began to have discussions about how Meaford Rotary could best provide support to the rural Tanzanian community.  Deliberations led us to the decision that their greatest need was an incubator for newborns at the hospital.
On Ukerewe Island the 5-year mortality rate is 88/1,000 (the rate of children who survive their first 5 years of life).  The Canadian 5-year mortality rate is 5.2/1,000 live births.  Reasons for this include HIV transmission through pregnancy or breast-feeding, persisting treatable diseases such as malaria, pneumonia, diarrhea, neonatal conditions and malnutrition.   A high prevalence of early childbearing with 32% of girls having their first pregnancy by the age of 18 (www.unicef.org) is a contributing factor. 
Healthcare providers on the island estimated that they needed the use of an incubator for an average of 1,000 births a year.  In October, the incubator was delivered to the hospital.  An education program for the nursing staff and physicians was organized and the team is looking forward to providing this service to the newborns on the island.

Contact Us

The Meaford Rotary Club looks forward to extending our relationship with the people of Ukerewe through future projects together.  If you are interested in further information, please contact us through:  https://www.meafordrotary.ca/