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Paul H

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3 reviews

Review for Adventures In Health Educational And Agricultural Development Inc, Rockville, MD, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

One of my cousins, Pam Sampson of Northampton, MA, died in childbirth in Dec. 2013. She was able to deliver a healthy baby boy but never got to see him, as she died of preeclampsia, a rare condition in which the placenta attacks the mother's body. A healthy 32-year-old before contracting preeclampsia, Pam had a degree in sports management and loved to travel. "We all miss Pam tremendously and always will," her uncle told me.

In the United States, about 10 women die in childbirth for every 100,000 deliveries. In countries like Tanzania, where AHEAD Inc. is active, the maternal mortality rate tops 400 maternal deaths per 100,000 births. Preeclampsia is a threat in Tanzania too, but the cause of death more often is banal, like having complications and no way to get to a hospital because you live in the country. I visited Tanzania with other AHEAD volunteers in 2008 and saw firsthand such dire situations in what otherwise is a captivatingly vibrant society. Now I am on the board of directors for AHEAD, which has been providing transportation to regional hospitals for at-risk expectant mothers, among other grass-roots initiatives that have saved thousands of lives over a period of more than 30 years. Founded by an African American pediatrician and his wife, who has a master's in social work, this organization gets results because of its grass-roots orientation. Their website will open your eyes.

Role:  Board Member
 

Review for Adventures In Health Educational And Agricultural Development Inc, Rockville, MD, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

AHEAD Inc. is an organization dedicated to solving dire problems faced by Africans that are barely imaginable to Americans. While doing this AHEAD also provides flexible opportunities for volunteers to go to Africa and apply whatever skills and knowledge they have to attack these problems.
AHEAD has a 30-year track record of saving lives, for example, through immunizations, and giving people hope through training opportunities. Lately AHEAD has concentrated on reducing the unacceptable mortality rate of mothers giving birth by finding ways to get them to a hospital.
As a volunteer, I worked with youth seeking to learn a trade to make themselves employable. What AHEAD accomplishes on many fronts is extraordinary, but so much more could be done, at the grass-roots level where AHEAD works, if funds were available. For example, less than $100 will give a young man or woman a year's training to qualify for electrical work.
I am a board member now, and I urge you to give a few dollars that will go father than you could imagine by donating to AHEAD.
As those who visit AHEAD at work in Tanzania and the Gambia know firsthand, our planet is like a boat. If we work together we will float.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

build on its people-to-people component that the founders have used so effectively.

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Role:  Donor
 

Review for Adventures In Health Educational And Agricultural Development Inc, Rockville, MD, USA

Rating: 5 stars  

AHEAD Inc. is a nonprofit that makes direct and crucial contributions to the lives of Africans through inexpensive on-the-ground projects: "Adventures in Health, Education and Agricultural Development" (the words behind the acronymn). Started 30 years ago by a savvy and committed African-American couple, Irving Williams, M.D., and his wife Elvira, M.S.W., of Bethesda, MD, AHEAD has saved countless lives through mass immunizations, medical treatment in clinics, water purification, solar cooking and much more. I spent two weeks with the organization's Education arm in Tanzania, East Africa, where AHEAD teaches carpentry, computer and electrical skills to students that enable them to earn certification and enter the job market. Many of them orphans, these young people would have no comparable opportunity without this program, which costs less than $100 per student. About 60 students graduate from the program each year, but many more could be trained if funds were available. AHEAD also pays the tuition for about 100 students to attend secondary school in Tanzania, but again the need is much greater than the available funding. The motivation of AHEAD students, as I witnessed it in the classroom, is indeed awesome. These students are grateful to be in class because they know this is probably their only opportunity to learn a skill in order to advance in life. AHEAD also makes an extra effort to ensure that young women have an opportunity to become self-sufficient. In the Health arena, AHEAD has been striving to provide transportation from the villages to regional hospitals for women about to give birth with complications; the aim here is to reduce Tanzania's unacceptably high infant-mortality rate. AHEAD also operates in The Gambia, West Africa. If you want to give someone a chance to make it in life with only a modest contribution, AHEAD could be your best investment.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Role:  Board Member