A Thanksgiving Message from WiRED International
Supporting Those in Need Worldwide
By Allison Kozicharow; Edited by Elizabeth Fine
WiRED International’s board and volunteers wish you a happy and healthy Thanksgiving.
This American holiday is about sharing, and this year that must include the sharing of programs and resources to promote good health and to prevent and treat illness. While we give thanks for the blessings in our lives, we also remember the people in need who live in our own communities and around the world. For the fortunate, Thanksgiving means a bountiful meal, but for far too many living in underserved communities this day and every day lead to starvation from food scarcity and to diseases such as COVID-19, malaria and too many others.
While all Americans now have access to COVID-19 booster shots, billions of people have no immediate prospect of receiving even a first time jab. WiRED’s community health workers (CHWs) in Kisumu, Kenya, are also trained as vaccinators. They are ready to administer vaccines as soon as they are available, but to date few people in their community have received one.
Thanksgiving is a time to reflect and plan on how we can use our time, talents and resources to help people who face hunger, dislocation and illness. To everyone who has made our programs possible, and to everyone who has used them to improve their own health and the health of their communities, we at WiRED send you our sincere best wishes during this season of thanks.
Spotlight on WiRED’s Community Health Workers and Vaccinators in Kenya
WiRED’s CHWs are a paraprofessional corps of local people expertly trained using a World Health Organization-compliant curriculum and with proven success in offering a host of services that elevate the health of their community. Along with providing basic clinical services CHWs improve health behaviors such as adherence to HIV antiretroviral therapy, diabetes management and TB treatment completion, childhood immunization and early prenatal care. They offer health education and health surveillance and become the bridge between their communities and the formal health system.
WiRED is grateful for the 12 CHWs who work tirelessly in their communities where they treat an astounding average of 5,300 people every month. Here are their names: