Supporters like you have changed thousands of lives through our Action on Fistula program in Kenya. Community outreach is critical to the project’s overall success. In fact, over 80 percent of patients are referred to Action on Fistula directly through outreach efforts.
That’s why we are overflowing with gratitude for our outreach partners at WADADIA (Women and Development Against Distress in Africa). WADADIA’s team members are experts in spreading the word about fistula on the ground. They use radio ads, flyers, and events to raise awareness and educate communities across the country.
Because of WADADIA, we have been able to reach women in rural Kenyan villages—women who would have otherwise suffered in isolation and shame. Through WADADIA referrals alone, over 500 women have received fistula surgery in just three years.
One of WADADIA’s hallmark strategies is to train Community Health Workers—local individuals who raise awareness about fistula in new and exciting ways. Neville Onzee is one such volunteer, and he focuses his work in two counties in eastern Kenya.
Neville is always looking for ways to spread the word in his community about obstetric fistula, and reaches out using everything from fistula rallies to forums to social media. He also helps coordinate reintegration activities for healed fistula patients, to help them return to their communities after treatment. This includes services like support groups and lending circles, as well as skills training such as sewing or hairdressing, to help women earn a living.
“I believe that every woman suffering from obstetric fistula needs to get treatment…It doesn’t matter whether she is living in the darkest jungles of Africa or the richest city in the country. She needs help, and her call for help should be attended to. It makes me happy to meet women who [are] suffering from fistula and have been treated.”
Your donations help WADADIA’s passionate Community Health Workers like Neville reach women suffering from obstetric fistula.
This story originally appeared in the Fall 2017 edition of our newsletter, Transformations.