After visiting and restoring a health center in town we learned there were over 50,000 people that have no access to health care in the remote location of Kihara. Kihara is situated in the Rwenzori Mountains where any infrastructure is washed away and residents are cut off from much needed health care due to a routinely flooding river. Last year alone, 15 people died trying to cross the river in search of a doctor or nurse. And hundreds die every year from treatable diseases due to a lack of access to basic health care. After many people told us we were crazy for trying to build in the middle of a remote mountainous area, one year later we opened the Marietta Steinberg Health Care Center in November 2015, named after the late mother of one of our employees. The Health Center has a staff of four and has already treated thousands of people suffering from malaria, dysentery, tuberculosis and other treatable illnesses when immediate care is available.
HEALTH CARE CENTER ADDITIONS
While the health center opening has been monumental for the region, we have realized there is still a need for additional space dedicated to maternity and infant care.
In 2017, we plan to build two additional rooms onto the current health center. The first room will be for prenatal screening, testing, and consultations while the second room will be for delivery and post pregnancy recovery. These facilities are desperately needed, as they will be the sole location for prenatal and childbirth in the village of Kihara.
HEALTH CARE CENTER POWER & WATER
The center currently has no running water or electricity. Access to clean water is critical when treating patients. In order to serve patients correctly, there is a dire need for these additions.
PFF has priced out solar power from a local resource to provide much needed electricity for lighting, sterilization, lab work and the basic needs of the doctor and staff. Research is being undertaken to determine how best to draw water from a nearby well for use by the facility. This water will likely be captured, filtered and pumped into the health center using the solar power already installed at the facility
HEALTH CARE CENTER ACCESS
Due to a fast moving river that flows through the Rwenzori Mountains in the Kihara region, there is need for a suspension bridge to connect the residents on the north side of the Nyamwamba River to the health center. Engineering studies have been done and PFF is actively seeking funding to finish the project. PFF has chosen to work with the foundation, Bridges to Prosperity, to build the bridge and train local engineers on the maintenance and repair of it.