The remarkable Health and Hope project is led by the equally remarkable Dr Taing Saing San, or Dr ‘SaSa’, as he is generally known.
HART has been supporting Dr SaSa since 2005, and Health and Hope since it was founded in 2009. Prior to the establishment of Health and Hope, there was almost no healthcare available in Chin State. Dr SaSa is the first and only qualified medical doctor in Chin State. The story of “Health and Hope” began with villagers donating everything from cows to chickens to send Dr Sasa for medical studies, and continued with the donation of land for the ‘Place of Health and Hope.’
At the heart of Health and Hope’s work is the training of Community Health Workers (CHWs). This is a participatory approach to healthcare, deeply rooted in local communities. Villages from across Chin State and beyond each send one man and one woman to Health and Hope. After receiving comprehensive training at Health and Hope’s residential centre, they return to their villages, where they are able to provide health education as well as essential medicines, bringing relief for illnesses formerly left untreated and helping with prevention. They form Village Health Committees to support the implementation of basic healthcare practices. They supply vitamins to children and to pregnant or lactating mothers.
In 2014, 157 new CHWs were trained, bringing the total number trained up to 838, with 473 villages now benefitting from the activities of a trained CHW.
These CHWs are estimated to save the lives of around 8 out of ten people who would previously have died.
HART and Health and Hope
HART-UK has supported the work of Dr. SaSa since 2005 with major support from Jersey Overseas Aid Commission (JOAC) and Guernsey Overseas Commission (GOAC), together with generous donations from HART supporters. HART continues to be the charitable organisation responsible for administering, monitoring and reporting on the funding from JOAC and GOAC with particular focus on the education of Community Health Workers and building Community Centres. Given Sasa’s expanding vision of services for his people and associated commitments, Health and Hope UK was established in 2012 as a dedicated UK-based charity (Health and Hope UK – Charity No. 1151105) to support Sasa’s work through equipping and strengthening governance, supporting development of fundraising and co-ordinating organisations supporting his work. Health and Hope have raised funds for the Community Health Worker Training, Freedom to Education, Community Building and Food Security Programmes. General financial support for Health and Hope Society should now be sent directly through Health and Hope UK.
For more information please visit www.healthandhope.org.