A community supported not-for-profit socio-cultural association

Liykiboomi2018 Cover Web

The Container Has Arrived!

Project Overview


The World Health Organization reported alarming statistics (2010) for Cameroon:

  • Life expectancy for adults is 53 years and the mortality rate for children under 5 years old is 154 deaths per 1,000 live births
  • The top 3 leading causes of disease burden are HIV/AIDS, Malaria, and Lower Respiratory Infections
  • Maternal mortality rate is 6 deaths per 1,000 live births
  • There are 16 nurses and 2 physicians per 10,000 population

Disappointingly, Cameroon spends only 8.1% of her Gross Domestic Product on health services for a total populace of approximately 19 million! Low life expectancy and high child mortality are partially attributed to deteriorating health care facilities and limited access to health care services. Three of the 8 Millennium Development Goals call for a reduction in child mortality, improvement in maternal health, and progress in combating HIV/AIDS, Malaria, and other diseases by 2015. In order to achieve these goals the overall health of the community must be improved. BHCII is a key contributor to the improvement of health services in Bui Division.

Bui Division recognizes forty-nine health centers which fall under 2 major health districts – Kumbo East and Kumbo West, with oversight by 2 district medical officers. The forty-nine health centers comprise: 2 major hospitals located in Kumbo (Banso Baptist Hospital and St. Elizabeth's Catholic Hospital – Shisong), 37 government run health centers, and 10 non-government health institutions.

The goal of the Bui Health Center Improvement Initiative (BHCII) is to identify and provide support for the needs of health centers across Bui Division. The initiative is being implemented in 3 phases: Needs Assessment; Distribution of Delivery Kits and Circumcision Sets; and Distribution of Medical Equipment and Supplies.

What We Did

BFU-USA has a track record of supporting the needs of health centers in Bui. Previous initiatives include completion of the Melim Integrated Health Center, and provision of medical supplies to health centers in Kifem, Kuvlu, Mbiame, and Oku . BHCII is an expansion of our previuos efforts to identify and provide support for specified needs of health centers across Bui Division by July 2012.

Phase I & II

Objectives:

  1. Conduct an assessment of health services and needs in Bui Division
  2. Define BFU-USA's role as a partner in the delivery of health services to over 300,000 inhabitants of communities across Bui
  3. Provide 170 delivery kits and 83 circumcision sets to 49 health centers across Bui Division.

Status:
Phase I was completed in January of 2010. BFU-USA convened a meeting attended by over 50 persons including Health Center Chief of Posts, both District Medical Officers assigned to Bui, Chief Medical Officers of Banso Baptist Hospital (BBH) and St. Elizabeth Catholic Hospital (Shisong), BBH's Chief Administrator, Shisong's Chief Administrator and Matron, the Administrator of the Catholic Diocesan Health Centers, the Project Manager for the Himalayan Institute, Cameroon Baptist Convention's (CBC) Director of the Private Training School for Health Personnel, and CBC's Director of LAP.

Phase II was completed in December 2011. The number of equipment provided and health centers that received them was determined by the Chiefs of Post and District Medical Officers who attended the January 2010 needs assessment meeting.

Outcomes:

  1. A prioritized list of needs was identified, including delivery kits, circumcision sets, adult and infant scales, delivery beds, centrifuges, microscopes, sterilizers, and generators
  2. Established that the most pressing needs include an ambulance service for fast medical response, improved building structure, and a need for medical missions to transfer technical knowledge.
  3. Agreed upon and established an implementation plan for Phase III of the project.
  4. Distributed 60 digital thermometers, 170 delivery kits, and 83 circumcision sets to health centers in Bui.

Phase III

Objectives:
Formalize and leverage our partnership with MedShare, Inc. to provide an estimated $500,000 worth of medical supplies and equipment to health centers across Bui Division.

Status:
Thanks to your generous financial support ($20,000.00 raised), the tireless efforts of BFU-USA members and leadership, and seamless collaboration with local partners and government officials, the MedShare Inc. container with medical supplies and equipment worth $500,000 has finally arrived in Kumbo! The pictures below tell the story; the entire community came out to welcome and help offload the container at the Nso Palace in Kumbo. The arrival of the container in Kumbo marks the culmination of a process that started with the Container Drive fundraisers during the 2010 and 2011 BFU-USA National Conventions:

  • Between 2010 and 2011, as a pre-requisite for entering into a formal agreement between BFU-USA and MedShare Inc., members of the BFU-USA Georgia Chapter volunteered at MedShare, Inc. Atlanta facility.
  • Raised $20,000 between July 2010 and July 2011 to pay MedShare Inc. for crating and shipping medical supplies to Cameroon
  • Formalized local partnership with NSODA in December 2013 to facilitate logistics of obtaining clearance for shipment to Cameroon, extraction of the Medical Supplies Container from the deep sea port in Douala, and manage distribution of equipment to health centers in Bui Division
  • Paid $15,000 to MedShare Inc. in December 2013 and thus entered into a formal agreement to begin process of securing the MedShare donation letter and identifying medical equipment for shipment to Cameroon
  • Obtained formal letter of exoneration from taxes from the Government of Cameroon on July 22, 2014. Based on recommendations from MedShare Inc., BFU-USA paid $3000 to MedShare Inc. for a 40 foot container; the container was loaded by MedShare Inc. and shipped from Oakland CA on January 5, 2015. The container arrived at the Nso Palace in Kumbo at 15:00 local time on May 11, 2015.

Outcomes:

  1. A prioritized list of needs of health centers in Bui has been identified for future reference
  2. Established that the most pressing needs include an ambulance service for fast medical response, improved building structure, and a need for medical missions to transfer technical knowledge.
  3. Successfully delivered $500,000 worth of medical supplies to health centers in Bui Division.
  4. Formalized local partnership with NSODA to facilitate local administrative logistics and the execution of future BFU-USA projects.
  5. Formalized the partnership between MedShare Inc. and BFU-USA, which can beleveraged for future projects.

Special Acknowledgement
As is often the case with logn running initiatives, BFU-USA could not have pulled this off without the dedication and committment of its members, leadership, and wellshers. We would like to especially express our sincere gratitude to the following people for their contribution towards the realization of this initiative:

Ms Lolem Ngong, Mr. Tarbinlam Lafon, and members of Team Power of One for the vision, audacity, and passion to conceive and initiate the BHCII project.

The members of the BFU-USA Georgia Chapter and especially Shey Yungri for working tirelessly as our local liason to coordinate logistics with MedShare Inc.

Mforme Steve Njodzeka Ndzerem (NSODA), Mr. Edward Bulami (NSODA), and H.E. Francis Fonye for assisting BFU-USA in clearing all logistic hurdles to obtain clearance to ship the container of medical supplies to Cameroon.

MedShare Inc. for their generous donation to the people of Bui Division.

Dr. Christian Bime, BFU-USA National President for his integrity and personal committment to continuing the BHCII project and managing its successful completion.