Community Health Initiative - CHI

Community Health Initiative

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Community Health Initiative (CHI)
 
The Community Health Initiative (CHI) of Rotary Club Dar es Salaam Oyster Bay is one of the Club’s key areas of community service. Launched in September 2013 with the first Medical Camp in Kerege near the town of Bagamoyo and going into its fifth year now, the CHI covers an ample range of health-related projects. Aside of the bi-annual organization of Medical Camps, the initiative also covers support for CCBRT Hospital in Dar es Salaam, the Retinoblastoma-Initiative and the dedicated involvement in the organization of the annual Rotary Dar Marathon in Dar es Salaam.
 
Within the six areas of focus of Rotary International - promoting peace; fighting disease; providing clean water, sanitation and hygiene; saving mothers and children; supporting education and growing local economies – the CHI initiative concentrates on two aspects which are especially vital for our country Tanzania: fighting disease and saving mothers and children.
 
Following reports of United Nation’s Agencies, Tanzania ranks 151 out of 188 nations on UN’s Human Development Index (HDI) and 156 out of 190 in Word Health Organization’s (WHO) most recent ranking of health systems. The average life expectancy at birth in Tanzania grew slightly in the past and is now at around 65 years. The infant mortality rate of 35.2%, the child mortality rate under five years of 48.7% and the number of child malnutrition under age 5 of 34.7% are areas of concern. The prevalence of Malaria with 27% or HIV with 6% stresses the health system significantly.
 
With a current population of 53.5 Million, the country’s percentage public health expenditure is around 2.6 % of its GDP. The number of 0.3 physicians per 10,000 inhabitants and an expected annual population growth of 3.2 % - that makes an expected population of 82.9 Million in 2030 – show that there is a significant need of health support for the local community in terms of health infrastructure now and in future. Especially if we consider the existing evidence that even limited health service fees are prohibitive to the poor -  particularly to women, single mothers and children.
 
We see it as our responsibility to give firm support to those who do not have access to medical services. As Rotarians and Rotary Clubs our legitimacy is quality of service we can provide to our community. This is what drives our Club’s engagement in the Community Health Initiative and all related projects at the moment and in the future.
 
In all our efforts as volunteers serving our local communities, the most limiting factor for Rotarians is free time. In every project and initiative, we seek to volunteer and contribute personally as opposed to simply fund projects. Hence, we encourage interested individuals and potential sponsors likewise to join our initiatives!
 
Please feel free to contact us anytime via serviceprojects@rotarydar.org or join us in our weekly meetings.