Jan 25, 2019 7:57 AM
Victoria Gauvin and Akol Aquek
Medical Supplies for South Sudan

Here's the introduction from our Speaker:

Some of you know that I used to work with and became good friends with one of the "Lost Boys of Sudan". Akol Aguek's story is a humbling & incredible one. After everything he went through he put himself through College, got an MBA and then went on to Harvard's Kennedy School of Government for a second Masters degree. There he created some impressive political connections. He is now President of the Bor County Development Association which is a non-profit working to make positive change back-home in war-torn South Sudan. 

 

After one of Akol's trips back home about a year-and-a half ago I learned about a hospital there and how basic supplies such as gloves, scrubs, blankets, etc were not available. Knowing how much gets thrown away in US hospitals I set on a mission to see if I could collect expired but still good supplies so we could send back to their hospital (and save them from going to landfills). For about a year and a half, in some of my spare time I have been working to overcome obstacles to try to secure medical supplies that would have been thrown out (but are still good) with the goal of sending them to this hospital in South Sudan that services about 100,000 people. It is a 200 bed hospital and in need of many, many basic supplies. After many starts, stops, and communications, recently, I had a breakthrough and got connected with an amazing organization already doing this (Partners for World Health, PWH). Rather than re-inventing this, I reached out to see how we could partner since they know customs, shipping, etc. and collect from numerous hospitals.

 

Akol and I met with Elizabeth, the Executive Director, (see CNN video below recently shot about PWH) and we are working to make this happen. PWH is willing to fill a container of supplies they've collected (wheel chairs, hospital beds, and much, much more, many brand new). The container we will ship will have about $250,000 worth of medical supplies....We just need to raise the funds to ship the container, which is $30,000. PWH is even exploring a medical mission for the future to provide lasting education over the longer term.

 

The $30k is to cover the container, shipping, customs, trucking, etc. We are aiming to ship by April 2019. I have started a fund raising effort in conjunction with the Bor County Development Association. Anyone who is interested in donating can do so and get a tax deduction as the Bor County Development Association is a non-profit. Checks can be made out to the Bor County Development Association. This is an exciting opportunity to have direct impact truly helping to save lives.  Thanks for reading and watching the CNN story on PWH (it's very short).