The KFWH 2012 Newsletter
Dear Advisory Boards, Friends of KFWH,Student Members of KFWH,
Another year, and another wish for Hope for all the world’s people! On behalf of the Student Policy Board and the KFWH Board of Directors, Happy Holiday Season!
Our Immediate Goals for the Year 2013!
1. To continue our project/action work for the treatment of
Chagas Disease in the region of Camiri, Boliva.
2. To complete and launch our newly designed website with
Marcia Kalisch, website designer.
3. To establish communication sites that will enhance our interactive
dialogues among villagers, patients, healthcare workers and
kfwh students in the United States.
4. To search foundations for grant funding.
5. To expand our membership through Home Base District.
What Makes Us Different?
- Kids for World Health was founded and defined by the voice of students.
- KFWH provides the opportunity for students to tangibly impact the world powerfully and positively, giving understanding to the impact of action and voice.
- Kids for World Health uses fundraising as an empowerment tool to help others and to spread their mission.
- Students participate in decision-making with regard to fundraising and organizational policy and structure with the help of their advisors.
- Kids for World Health models the educational examples of student engagement and student voice.
- Kids for World Health provides a network for interaction among students, doctors, villagers, health care experts, and educators across the US and the world to support a common mission.
- KFWH provides an opportunity for children to develop a social conscience and to communicate this passion.
- KFWH models the behaviors of human respect, equality, and service both locally and globally.
- KFWH provides opportunities for chapters to increase students’ comprehension of the power of cooperation and coordination and its possibilities for making a meaningful impact on the world.
Our Accomplishments in 2012!
This year was a milestone year for KFWH in the expanding of our mission to Central America. With initial meetings at CDC in Atlanta, KFWH established contact with research doctors and medical staff in the region of Santa Cruz and Camiri. With this partnership, we were able to begin our 2012 action providing leads and inducers for pacemaker surgeries in the treatment of Chagas Disease, a crippling neglected disease effecting 85% of the villagers in the surrounding area of the city. Chagas Disease is no longer limited to South America. A number of cases are now present in the U.S. through mother to child transmission among U.S. immigrants. It is an aim of KFWH to help educate those whose lives are affected both here and abroad.
In addition to this step, we have come full circle in providing a student internship for one of our Founders, Emily Wharton. Emily was the first to work on site at one of our target areas. She is currently working on a documentary film to aid in the support of patients in overcoming their fear of invasive surgeries and will again work abroad for the next semester as part of a Harvard semester abroad program in Argentina. It is thrilling to witness all of our founders as they continue their interest in global studies in various parts of the world. Sam Gruppo and Meghan Marr have worked in Argentina within their school programs and will be sharing their experiences with us. Geoff Miles is serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Cameroon. He has been writing a blog about his work and experience within that country.
Another emergency project in Bolivia, was the treatment of a patient whose life required open- heart surgery as a result of Chagas. He participated in the program that Emily was working on and his prognosis was fatal. KFWH went to work in all chapters, and with the help of the Sandpiper Fund, Inc.,raised approximately $6,000 in a two week period. Reports are coming in about the progress of this villager, and it was with enthusiasm that we were able to symbolize the importance of Life for one as we feel it to be for all people.
Kids for World Health also completed their project in Lwala,Uganda with Project Cure in delivering supplies and equipment to the village hospital where KFWH constructed and completed a pediatric clinic in 2008. Below is a letter from the hospital adminstrator that expresses her thanks on behalf of the villagers from the region.
Warm regards from Lwala Hospital and fiends here including my son- Enock; He is now studying in nursery.
On behalf of the community here and the Board, I am obliged to say thank you for your struggle that has brought us this far. In spite of the fact that some of the most needed instruments were unusable, we still found some useful so there is no reason for us to cry over split milk. We know that your intent was genuine, and that there are some issues to work out with Project Cure.
For Dr. Andrew, he is still the Employee of the Hospital and he is bonded to come back to work here in Lwala after his studies. We are currently offering him paid study leave and we hope to sort out the contribution he made towards the clearing of the donation.You should not worry about this, it will be handled well.
Concerning scholarship for me, we shall always keep in-touch and if God so wishes, I will definitely be glad to come over and study there. This as well, should not put you on tension. I love the inspiration you have for me in particular and more so the love you have for the people here. You will forever be remembered in our hearts. The Children’s ward in so beautiful and children are using it and that to me should be a good motivation for KFWH and you.
Please receive our gratitude and remember, Lwala is a home away from Home. You are most welcome to Lwala any time!
The theater is complete except we are waiting for the instruments to be used in it which the Italians promised to bring by the end of the year.
We are also building a guest house; I am sure by time you come you will be safe and enjoy being in it.
A visiting friend from Spain also helped us rebuild the old children’s ward.
This all we give God glory! We thank you because with the attempt of KFWH, other people have also become interested in helping us out.
I have also witnessed the community attitude change towards us and we are sure will be beneficial to the Hospital.
With those few remarks, I wish you the best and my regards to your Son, and Kids for World Health.
We love you!!!!!!!!!!!”
In brief explanation, our relationship with Project Cure was challenged by the delivery of some items that were of no use due to operational quality and age. We are currently looking to reach an agreement with them as a result.
In continuation, the opening ceremony of our Bodo, Chad clinic in Africa with Dr. Pere Simarro was exciting for all concerned.
In October, Geoff Miles and I met with neglected diseases Director, Dr. Jean Jannin and KFWH Advisory Board members Dr. Pere Simarro, Dr. Pedro Albajar and Dr. Carlos Dias at WHO in Geneva to discuss Chagas Disease and the current status of our target neglected diseases. It was an inspiring and productive meeting as always, and we thank the team who have advised us since our inception.
And finally, our chapter members who make this work possible, have fundraised through talent shows, water jug walks, hand-created notecard sales, pizza and bakesales, and eduaational exhibits! We attended one event in Chatham, NJ, where approximately 1200 students were attending an organized talent show/educational event! The Murray Avenue Chapter sponsored a jug walk where over $1000 was raised in proceeds, demonstrating the distance and difficulty villagers faced in just obtaining water. Mamaroneck High School brought in many to witness the talents of auditioned performers in their staged event while educating the audience on Chagas Disease and KFWH involvement.
Kids for World Health would like to express our thanks for your support of its voice and especially thank the continuous support of The Sandpiper Fund, Inc., Daniel Scheuer Family, for their belief in our work. We ask that you generate interest and suggestions for our organization, begun in 2003 from the voices of children, and join us in whatever way possible to support the world’s families who die each hour of diseases for which the Western world holds the cure. We look forward to working with retired teachers in the community in 2013, who are Friends of Kids for World Health in order to better fulfill our mission and to enhance our programs!
With our best wishes,
Sam Gruppo, Student Policy Board Representative
Kay Kobbe, President of the Board of Directors
Children in line for school in Chad
Celebration for the opening of the KFWH clinic in Bodo, Chad