I first visited Zambia in 2006 to attend a healthcare conference. l fell in love with the beautiful people - they have little in material possessions, but have so much joy for life. It is a country at peace, with a wealth of natural beauty, wildlife, and national parks which have the potential to develop into major tourist destinations. Zambia gained independence in 1964, but landlocked, and surrounded by several countries experiencing political strife, continues to struggle economically.
I was moved by the poverty and devastation caused by the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Having worked in both public health and fundraising, I felt I could make a difference by establishing a foundation to make it easy for people to help. I had seen the worst of poverty in this country working in Baltimore City’s housing projects and public mental health facilities, but I had never seen poverty on the level experienced in Zambia and much of the third world.
By using the twin strategies of developing direct, nongovernmental relationships with trustworthy staff, and directing 100% of donations to our programs we are seeing remarkable progress. The children at the Lubasi Home and Lushomo Home for Girls are thriving. These children are the key to the Zambia’s future!
Founder, Global Partners for Health
The Statistics are Overwhelming
- 710,000 AIDS orphans in Zambia (total population is 12 million)
- Average life span is 38 years
- 1 in 6 adults are infected with HIV/AIDS
- The average per capita income is under $370 a year or approximately $1.00 day – one of the poorest countries in the world
- One of the highest malaria rates in the world with malaria being the major cause of infant mortality
- 75% shortage of medical supplies and healthcare personnel – only 643 physicians in Zambia for a population of 12 million
Many of us believe there is a moral imperative to help. When we know that it is more likely for a 12 year old girl to die in childbirth than to complete primary school we must act. When we know that families live on $1.00 per day and are unable to feed their children we cannot look away. When children and adults are dying from easily preventable diseases such as malaria and complications from HIV/AIDS, as compassionate human beings, we need to help.
There is also a pragmatic and compelling argument. The race for Zambia’s resources – and the hearts and minds of its people - is ongoing. The Zambian people embrace us and it’s in our economic and security interest to win this race. It’s easy to make a difference - the US dollar goes far in Zambia. Sustainable aid – particularly education and healthcare - are two of the best investments we can make in Zambia’s future and our own.