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Angel Sightings
August 22, 2008

Mom, daughter lead Kenyan village in AIDS recovery

RABUOR, Kenya - Loyce Mbewa-Ong'udi was late. Family and friends milled around her parents' house in the green hills overlooking Lake Victoria, waiting for the daughter from America to return home.

At last the taxi bounced over the ruts and made a sharp turn into the compound of small brick and stucco houses. Loyce sprang out to a shower of greetings in the Luo language, hugs, helping hands for 12 enormous suitcases crammed with anti-AIDS medicines, asthma inhalers, storybooks, pencils and sharpeners, recycled eyeglasses.

The supplies were for the Rabuor Village Project, which Loyce runs. In the crowd, she sought the woman who started it all: her mother, Rosemell Ong'udi.

Read the complete story by Barbara Borst for AP on Yahoo News


Rwanda: Hospital’s Design Keeps Fresh Air in Mind

In the dark corridors and congested waiting rooms of rural hospitals in sub-Saharan Africa, tuberculosis can spread like a rumor in a small town. A patient who comes in with a broken leg might leave with a deadly disease.

Recently, several global health aid groups have been trying not only to contain and treat recalcitrant infectious diseases like tuberculosis, but also to promote new ways of building hospitals in the world’s poorest rural areas.

Read the complete story by Bina Venkataraman for The New York Times


Health gap plagues the rural poor

Volunteers help provide services in neglected areas

Leslie King sounded confident, even cocky.

Forty-eight hours before the first mission of Flying Physicians International, the Ivy League graduate and emergency room doctor talked about the crowds she expected at a one-day health clinic in Elkton.

The tiny town tucked between Interstate 5 and the coastal town of Reedsport is, like so many rural Oregon communities, badly in need of basic medical care.

King hopes to fill that gap with a roving band of doctors, nurses and other volunteers who will drop into hard-to-reach areas to provide preventive maintenance — eye and ear checks, basic blood work, immunizations and dental exams; the things few people would make a special trip for, especially if they lack insurance or their doctor is an hour away.

Read the complete story by Anna Griffin for The Houston Chronicle


Nicaragua: US Fourth Fleet Treads Fine Line

The newly reactivated U.S. Fourth Fleet began its operations in Latin American waters with a humanitarian mission that made its first stop in Nicaragua, before heading on to six other countries of the Caribbean and Central and South America.

Along with the marines and naval personnel on the ship are travelling members of the U.S. Public Health Service and non-governmental organisations like Project HOPE and Operation Smile, and volunteers from France, Spain, Brazil, the Netherlands, the United States and Canada.

Read the complete story by José Adán Silva for Inter Press Service


Medical Teams International Sends Supplies To Georgia

Portland-based “Medical Teams International” will send out supplies this week to help displaced people in the former Soviet Republic Georgia. The non-profit agency will ship medicine and other basic medical supplies, from antibiotics and pain killers to syringes and gowns.

Read the complete story by Christina Neuhaus for Oregon Public Broadcasting