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Working to build better community healthcare in Africa

Mary Dawa at the Rhino Camp Refugee Settlement in northwest Uganda

When Mary Dawa and her family arrived at the sprawling Rhino Camp Refugee Settlement in northwest Uganda seven years ago, something critically important was missing: medical services. But slowly, that began to change.

Earlier this year, a team of locally recruited health workers came to provide Dawa and her community with COVID-19 vaccines. While there, they offered other primary and preventive healthcare services too: routine immunizations, dietary help for malnourished children, screenings for other diseases, and guidance on maternal and neonatal care.

These services are part of a bold, community-focused project that seeks to strengthen healthcare systems across sub-Saharan Africa. Amref Health Africa, the continent’s largest health development organization, is leading this work thanks to a grant from The Pfizer Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Pfizer Inc.

“There is a need to believe in our health systems,” says Dawa, who had fled from neighboring South Sudan. “And I am so proud that these interventions worked.”


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