$2million sought for healthcare operations
Two non-profit organisations that are helping with drone-based health delivery in Malawi and Mozambique are still hoping for well-wishers to help raise the $2million needed for full scale operations this year.
Focusing Philanthropy and VillageReach have been working in Africa for a long time, delivering medicines to remote areas on the continent. In 2015, they introduced medical drones to their inventory of medical transport and since then, their Drones For Health project has made hundreds of flights and delivered thousands of medicines to the people of Malawi and Mozambique.
“VillageReach and Focusing Philanthropy are partnering to raise $2,000,000 to increase equitable access to health products and diagnostics for 700,000 people in hard-to-reach areas in Malawi and Mozambique via drone technology,” said Focusing Philanthropy in a statement. “Using drone service provider Swoop Aero, The Drones For Health campaign will scale up the first national two-way drone delivery service in the world by expanding drone flights from 25 to 105 health facilities in Malawi.
“Drones will both deliver medical products and pick up lab samples for testing, contributing to a reduction in maternal and childhood disease as well as infectious diseases such as Malaria, HIV, TB, and COVID-19. In Mozambique, the campaign will support the government’s emergency response to the COVID pandemic in one of the provinces hardest-hit by the virus.”
Lack of sponsorship has been the bane of many a noble delivery drone project in Africa, with non-profits solely relying on donations for the success of their initiatives.
And when those donations dry out, so do the drones stop flying.
So does the hope for fast healthcare access for millions of people. And when vaccines or medicines cannot get to where they are needed in time, the health of entire communities is at stake. In the words of Focusing Philanthropy, it means that children may fall sick and die from malaria and diarrhoea especially during the rainy season, pregnant women may not survive complications of pregnancy or childbirth, and infectious diseases like Tuberculosis, COVID and HIV may spread faster in the general population.
Every year for the past twenty, VillageReach has been working to ensure that 43 million people throughout sub-Saharan Africa avoided falling on the wrong side of their health with no access to drugs.
Now, they need $2million to stay in business for the year.
“From March 1 to December 31, 2021, Focusing Philanthropy will add a $1 for every dollar contributed by VillageReach until the overall campaign goal of $2,000,000 is reached,” the organisation said. “Donations must be a minimum of $1,000 and directed to Focusing Philanthropy, a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit and free resource to donors.”