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2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Global Links

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Environment, Health, International, International Development, International Relief, Public Health, Recycling

Mission: Global Links is a medical relief and development organization dedicated to supporting health improvement initiatives in resource-poor communities and promoting environmental stewardship in the US healthcare system. Global Links’ collaborative efforts include: -Redirecting still-useful materials away from US landfills to support public health programs in targeted communities throughout the Western Hemisphere -Sharing expertise and technical knowledge with international and domestic partners -Educating partners, volunteers, and the community on issues of global health and environmental stewardship

Results: Since 1989 Global Links has provided 100 countries with materials worth more than $186 million.

Target demographics: Global Links collaborates with officials, administrators and community leaders to ensure our programs support the work of skilled healthcare professionals and help improve the quality of care for their patients. We work with hospital staff in Western Pennsylvania and beyond to develop sustainable practices for surplus collection and recovery.

Direct beneficiaries per year: Thousands of patients who have access to higher quality medical care as a result of Global Links' strategic partnerships. 50+ healthcare facilities in the US with whom we partner to achieve more environmentally responsible operations.

Geographic areas served: Global Links supports health improvement initiatives in resource-poor communities, primarily in the Western Hemisphere. Global Links collaborates with US healthcare institutions and the community to recover hundreds of tons of high-quality surplus medical materials every year that would otherwise be sent to landfills.

Programs: Global Links’ International Medical Aid Program partners with public health authorities to strengthen health systems for measurable impact in the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere. Our Community Partners Program supports fellow nonprofit organizations in the US that benefit from our materials and experience. Our Environmental Stewardship in Healthcare Program educates a compassionate network of healthcare professionals who work to share surplus with colleagues in resource-poor communities and provides a socially and environmentally responsible alternative to sending still-useful surplus materials to landfills.

Community Stories

307 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Volunteer

Rating: 5

In volunteering with Global Links you really do feel like you're are directly affecting peoples lives all over the world. The organization goes above and beyond to try and suit the experience of the volunteer to match their experience and ability. Most one time volunteers go in and pack medical supplies, which is a remarkable experience because you literally are providing essential goods for medical clinics abroad. Everything that is packed is typically shipped out quickly, the equipment that is sent could be used by needy medical personnel only a few days later. Personally, I normally work fixing medical devices and wheelchairs. When a device is finished, the feeling of success lingers, as I know that the product I was working on will be in the hands of someone in need within a couple days. Global Links is also one of the most sustainable organizations I have ever worked with. Everything we use is recycled, or re purposed. It is rare when anything goes to waste. Wheel chairs are fixed by ripping apart severely broken wheel chairs and integrating parts into less damaged chairs. We literally are taking products which easily could be in a landfill and redirect their purpose. Most supplies that come into Global Links would have been thrown in the trash if global links had not stepped in and taken them. This is easily the best non-profit humanitarian group I have ever worked with, in terms of sustainability, effort in recycling, overall competency, and importance of volunteering. Global Links should be considered as a model for other non-profits around the world.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I gather with a few friends for a few hours once a month to sort medical supplies and pack them into cartons for mailing to countries where they are desperately needed. I imagine someone opening the box and finding exactly what was needed at that particular moment, and it is as if I had actually put that item directly into an outstretched hand.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 3

I read your newsletter and am constantly impressed by the wonderful things you are doing to improve healthcare for the poor.

Tracy20

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Global Links provides volunteers with the opportunity to help sort and package medical supplies to send to developing countries. One of the nice things about Global Links is that they have built a strong rapport with area hospitals and they are able to recycle a lot of material that would otherwise be discarded. It feels really good to know that the waste material is limited and is able to be recirculated to those who would otherwise not have these supplies. Global Links provides their volunteers with publications that show actual relief that is gained by their work.

Donor

Rating: 5

When the catastrophic earthquake hit Haiti in Jan 2010, my company looked for the entity to which it made the most sense to donate. We raised $2000 by selling product online for 4 months and donating all the proceeds. We were privileged to have this opportunity to provide a way for our customers to donate to this urgent cause, and know that their donations would be used more efficiently and in a more timely manner than anywhere else they could have donated.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

An excellent organization with a dual impact both locally and globally. Efficient use of volunteer time and educational. Quantitative successes that truly change lives.

bernshen

Board Member

Rating: 5

Although my experience as a volunteer advisor & Board member with Global Links goes back 2 decades, perhaps it will provide some long-term perspective on the organization. In the early 1990's, I was an emergency physician based in Pittsburgh, but with a strong interest in global health (seeing patients, doing disaster work or conducting research in settings as diverse as Nepal, the Marshall Islands, Central America & the South Pole). Kathleen & her co-founder Brenda brought tremendous passion & dedication to their mission, working nights & weekends to build a network of hospitals & clinics who could donate equipment & supplies, to coordinate the complex logistics of delivering the donations around the world, & to monitor & evaluate accountability & effectiveness of the recipient organizations. They led by example & inspired a team of (almost!) equally hardworking staff & volunteers - a really impressive example of executing on an idea to make an important difference in the world.

Donor

Rating: 5

Our organization donates returned equipment to Global Links rather than sending it to a scrapyard for recycling. The value of the hardware as scrap pales in comparison to the value it provides its new users, typically medical facilities in Latin America and the Caribbean. I have been associated with Global Links in one capacity or another for over 20 years and know they put donations to good use; I'm proud to have a small part to play in their work.

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Donor

Rating: 5

I have been involved with Global Links for close to 15 years in several capacities; I can vouch for their effective use of contributions. We are currently donating hardware that would have ended up in a scrap yard to Global Links; while recycling is great, reuse is even better and that is what they are all about. I'm proud to be associated with anything they do and am willing to go the extra mile for them; they are truly great people doing great things.

Donor

Rating: 5

I choose the category of donor because that's what I've done in the last few years. Previously, I've volunteered to help sort and pack to send much needed supplies and equipment to Carribean countries. Recently I have also reached out to friends and family successfully convincing them to become donors as well. Although it didn't take much convincing from me since Global Links' record of service, newsletters and reports are so very factual and compasionate. I know several staff members from their years of work with Global Links and some with other social justice projects. It makes me so happy that I can enthusiastically endorse their integrity, frugality, reliability, professionalism and environmental principles to my friends and family. It is a pleasure to donate to the suture campaign, work in Haiti and much more knowing that every hard earned dollar of mine is going to enable better care to my fellow human beings because of the great work of Global Links.

Chris57

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have made a few trips to India and Africa and three times Global Links has provided me with medical equipment to assist the small clinics visited. I know that this is a very small part of their overall activity but it's clear that they have the resources, and use them, to assist in providing very needed healthcare supplies around the world.

karensgoldman

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Volunteering at Global Links is a great experience for me and my whole family. We feel like we're doing somehting really important and that even our teenagers can help with. Volunteers are instrumental in achieveing the mission of the organization but also learn a great deal, for example, about health care in the developing world, and the abundance of waste that is not recycled on our own healthcare system.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

One of the global concerns that I feel needs attention is health care. While it is obvious that there are serious inequalities in access to and quality of health care in the United States, the concern I am addressing in this essay is one related to the absolute lack of even the most basic care in developing countries. In the world’s poorest nations, most people do not have access to even the lowest quality hospitals, clinics, providers, supplies, medicines and health care equipment. With all of the amazing advances in technology and research in the developed countries, millions of people die each year of causes that are completely preventable by basic things like clean water, inexpensive vaccines, medicines and simple procedures for care. Obviously, enormous efforts are needed on a geopolitical scale to remedy this.
On the other hand, wealthy countries like the U.S. waste millions of pounds of medical supplies every year. Instruments, supplies, medicines and many other things get thrown away before their usefulness runs out because of rules and regulations, lack of attention to recycling opportunities and sometimes just laziness. My sensitivity to this problem has been heightened since I started working at Global Links, a Pittsburgh-based organization that collects and recycles used and expired medical equipment and supplies. I think that if every city had such a program, we would go a long way to helping developing countries improve medical care. Global Links does wonderful work. Every U.S. city should have a Global Links site.

Bridget H.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have volunteered for many organizations, but Global Links is my favorite because of the great, necessary and far-reaching work that they do. Every day they take medical supplies that otherwise would be tossed away and send them to countries where they are desperately needed. Before Global Links existed, millions of dollars worth of supplies were thrown into the trash. Now these resources are being used to save lives! The staff at Global LInks always has an eye toward utilizing volunteers efficiently. A project is ready to go, a staff member will explain how everything is to be sorted and packed, and we all enjoy seeing how much work we can accomplish in just a few hours. I recommend this organization to anyone looking for meaningful volunteer work.

Donor

Rating: 5

I first met Global Links through my favorite mentor who sits on their board. I have many pet causes, but I knew that if my wonderful mentor supported it, then I knew it was worth taking a second look. My next encounter was as a consultant helping Global Links re-design their operations to minimize waste and maximize how they used every minute and every dollar. I was impressed with their desire to make the most of every resource they had to continuously expand their reach and impact. I also appreciated their focus on understanding their customers' actual needs. Rather than exporting surplus medical supplies, they come from the perspective of allowing customers to "pull" what they need and import only what can actually be used. Now, I am a loyal donor and supporter. I have lived in third world countries and have seen the need that Global LInks is helping to meet. I appreciate that they collaborate with host countries--in a professional, respectful way. Because I have worked briefly with the organization, I give confidently knowing that my dollars are honored and used carefully--to bless the lives of patients and health professionals alike in a way that promotes the spirit of re-use and recycling.

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Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I met Global Links about 3 years ago and fell in love with its mission at once. I got to know the staff and organizational culture when I first trained several staff members in process improvement techniques adopted from Toyota and then coached their team through a large-scale streamlining of their entire value stream. It gave me a deep understanding of what they have been able to achieve in filling a perfect gap between waste and need. It also gave me an appreciation for the hard working staff willing to examine their own work with a critical eye and try to improve how they do what they do instead of resting on the laurels of past successes. Now, I am a liaison at St. Clair Hospital and we about to partner with Global Links to become one of their regular donors. I am thrilled to have a chance to work with this worthy nonprofit again!

Bria A.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I came to volunteer at Global Links with interest in their mission. I spent a few months working there and helping to sort medical equipment and supplies that were being sent to those in need. One of the great realizations for me was how much of an effort Global Links puts into their mission to rescue this equipment that would otherwise be sent to the landfill. The millions of pounds of medical supplies and equipment that is rescued and redistributed is life changing to those who are receiving as well as the global impact that is thwarted from the poundage being kept from landfills. Amazing work on so many levels!

Lee_5

Client Served

Rating: 5

GlobalLinks has helped us to assemble and send birthing kits to a hospital in Kenya - by recycling good but disgarded materials such as gloves through Gl;obalLinks we have been able to provide thousands of kits to enable women in Kenya to have health births with midwives.

Hayavadhan T.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

For about six years, I have volunteered with Global Links and have found their organization and mission to be something I appreciate and support wholeheartedly. Last summer, I continued my relationship with them through an internship. Global LInks provides their donors and volunteers with the opportunity to feel as though they are making a significant contribution through hands-on volunteer work and regular email updates. I am continually impressed with their ability to integrate issues like global health and environmental responsibility and not look at any one issue independently. Furthermore, their success as a organization for over 20 years is based on their ability to adapt their operations to utilize new technologies and strategies, which is an effort I have been directly involved with.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering with Global Links for about five years now. I started working with them while I was in high school and was only too happy to have the opportunity to continue to do so when I stayed in Pittsburgh for college. I've found that their mission and vision appeal to a wide variety of people. I have been particularly impressed with their dual commitment to fighting global inequities in health and ensuring the environmental sustainability of their work.

Client Served

Rating: 5

The CEO of global links, Kathleen Hower, has assembled a passionate staff of 23 employees and over 9,000 volunteer hours from almost 2,000 individuals. They do an amazing job of recoveriing medical supplies that would otherwise end up in a landfill and distributing them to countries in-need. Their regional material recovery efforts top 250 tons annually and are distributed primarily in 9 countries including Nicaragua, Guatemala, Jamaica, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Dominican Republic, Cuba and Bolivia. Since 1989, Global Links has provided over $172 million in aid – plus materials to Pittsburgh nonprofits including free-care clinics, animal welfare groups and schools.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Global links is a WONDERFUL non-profit. They provided me with useful medical supplies for my pediatric free clinic.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Global Links partners with Zonta Club of Pittsburgh to provide birthing kits to a hospital in rural Kenya which has few basic supplies . The kits provide basics for a clean birth. Not only has Global Links provide us with hundreds of pairs of clean gloves that would have been disposed of in an American landfill, they have assisted with ways to more effectively develop the project and to safely ship kits. We, in return, have helped with their work in Haiti by providing kits to them. The result--appropriate, targeted use of discarded but useable medical equipment; providing kits both allows mothers to use midwifery services because they have the required materials and provides a way to have a clean birth. Mother, baby and caregiver benefit and we protect the environment by using available goods not getting new ones!! Global Links was incredible in freely offering their considerable experience. Elizabeth Stifel M.D., Zonta Club of PGH

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The people are very friendly and welcoming to volunteers as they come in the door. When we get in, we start almost immediately. It is nice to see the little review video explaining more in depth what it is Global Links does. It really shows the impact we make as volunteers and makes it apparent how important it is for us to pack and organize supplies.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As volunteers with Global Links my wife and I have had nothing but a positive experience each time we are able be there. They stay true to their mission of " Sharing Surplus,Saving Lives" We are always treated well at each of our sessions and made to feel like we are appreciated. The organization is well managed from the top down and they never forget where they came from. We have seen them grow over the years but have done this with a measured expansion with a nod to doing this in a manner where they carefully calculate the true needs of how they help each request. We are proud to be a very small part of this great organization.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a sophomore engineering student at the University of Pittsburgh and am vice president of a club called Engineers for Sustainable Medical Development. Our club has similar ideologies as Global Links does so we have teamed up with them. Both of our main goals are to provide sustainable and appropriate medical equipment to developing countries. Global Links has given us weekly volunteer opportunities in their warehouse fixing wheelchairs and other medical equipment. This has allowed us to get some hands on engineering experience. Also, Global Links has teamed up with our club to set up a service study abroad program for students. We will be able to send a couple engineering students to developing countries to help repair medical equipment and also, bring valuable equipment with us. The relationship my club and Global Links has built is invaluable. They have given Pitt students so many opportunities while still helping people in the developing world. I think Global Links should win this award because they help the medical conditions in the developing world in a responsible, green way but also, they help their community in Pittsburgh like giving a college club a chance to make a difference as well.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I GOT CONNECTED TO GLOBAL LINKS OVER FIVE YEARS AGO. AS A MEDICAL PROVIDER WHO DOES MEDICAL MISSIONARY TRIPS THREE TIMES A YEARS, I AM ALWAYS IN NEED OF SUPPLIES/ MEDICATIONS/PAPER PRODUCTS. OVER THE LAST NINE YEARS, MANY ORGANIZATIONS HAVE CUT BACK ON ACCESS TO THIS PRODUCTS AND AS MEDICAL DIRECTOR IN CHARGE OF SECURING THESE SUPPLIES, I HAVE FOUND GLOBAL LINKS TO BE FAITHFUL CONTRIBUTORS. I AM ALSO GRATEFUL FOR THE OPPORTUNITY TO VOLUNTEER ON SAT MORNINGS TO HELP PACKAGE THESE SUPPLIES. THEY HAVE BEEN INSTRUMENTAL IN CONNECTING THOSE ESSENTIAL SUPPLIES TO THIRD WORLD COUNTRIES. WHAT WOULD WE DO WITHOUT THIS MISSING LINK THAT GLOBAL LINKS PROVIDES? I AM BLESSED TO HAVE MEET THEM AND I WILL ALWAYS SUPPORT THE WORK THAT THEY HAVE BEEN CALLED TO FULFILL. DO YOU HAVE A MOMENT TO ASSIST THEM IN THEIR FUTURE ENDEAVORS? SUPPORT GLOBAL LINKS WITH YOUR TIME AND MONEY, KNOWING THAT IT WILL BE WELL SPENT. THE TWO HOURS VOLUNTEER SESSION IS WELL ORGANIZED AND CARRIED OUT IN EFFICIENT MANNER, GETTING SUPPLIES TOGETHER QUICKLY FOR TARGETED MEDICAL GROUPS. I GIVE THEM TOP STARS.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have worked with Global Links when we needed supplies for Haiti in an emergency situation. They were fantastic to work with. I also worked with them when a 100 bed facility was 'going out of business and needed to have their beds and supplies removed relatively quickly. Again they were wonderful to work with.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a critical care nurse working in Pittsburgh i have been able to organize, as part of our community service commitment, a number of volunteer efforts wherein critical care nurses work with the GL Team packing medical supplies to send throughout the world to countries where they are needed. These GL folks are focused, well informed and dedicated. doing an extraordinary job unselfishly. My unit and my hospital also contribute medical supplies to this effort.

Charity S.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I volunteered with them to clean off IV poles and once again to organize equipment to be shipped. Both times were pleasant, the staff was helpful, the other volunteers were interesting and nice.

Review from Guidestar

Board Member

Rating: 5

Global Links is an Organization that, with a simple formula, is solving complex life threatening challenges in developing countries mainly in Latin America and the Caribbean. I have had the experience of seeing medical facilities and meeting patients similar to the ones Global Links is benefiting with their work, and it is hard to believe that such situations still exist when the scarce resources needed in those places are abundant in other parts of the world. This is exactly what Global Links mends and how it adds value as an innovative organization.
I believe that the supplies being provided and the tailored way in which is being done by GL, are solving real problems and many lives. I am impressed with the passion of the staff and hundreds of volunteers that, without knowing these patients or doctors in far away countries, understand the importance of their work and show enormous respect for them by providing top quality materials that meet the highest standards.
I strongly believe that Global Links is a serious, pioneering and passion-driven Organization that is changing the lives of many human beings.

Donor

Rating: 5

UPMC Shadyside values relationship-based care and practice. Our nurses see themselves as good neighbors in their hospital’s urban community, a part of Pittsburgh that is home to people from many walks of life, educational and income levels, and ethnic backgrounds. Within our community we have the good fortune of partnering with Global Links to extend our boundaries even further. Because of this relationship, both nurses and the communities prosper. Strengthening our ties to our local and even international community’s builds rapport and facilitates understanding of needs and the evolution of patient-centered initiatives. Thanks to the work we do with Global Links our nurses have embraced this interconnectedness and can be found in local, national and international venues.

Donor

Rating: 5

I work at a large medical facility that has chosen to donate products to the Global Links community. As a facilitator of this process at our hospital I have met and spoken to the staff at the organization. The manager of the local facility presented an in-service to the perioperative group explaining the needs of the organization and the products that they can accept. It was very informative and helped the staff to understand the benefits of sending the products that we "discard" to Global Links so that they can recycle it for use in underprivileged areas that would not have access to the products otherwise. I personally met with staff at the facility to help them understand the different types of sterilization used to reprocess items. I also explained about outdates and the event related issues of outdating. We discussed the issues of manufacti=ure outdates versus event related issues. The group was extremly interested in the information and were very receptive to me. It was a real pleasure to visit and tour their facility and see the effort that they put into seperating the supplies, identifying and cataloging them. This work will allow them to be able to let different countries know what they have to send. The result is that supplies, equipment, and instruments that are no longer of use to us can be sent to a hospital that has the need and would not be able to afford theses things. I would like to at some time be able to be a volunteer to visit the countries that benefit from the generosity of these items. All thiese items would be thrown away if Global Links were not a beneficiary.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

GL is amazing! The volunteer routine of sorting and packing supplies is organized so that no time is wasted. At the end of your 2 hour shift, it is very satisfying to see all the sealed boxes of supplies ready to ship. I also volunteer for Shoulder-to-Shoulder Pittsburgh and GL provides medical supplies for our twice yearly mission trips to Honduras. We count on GL to provide us with supplies we couldn't afford to regularly purchase.

Donor

Rating: 5

I have been very impressed with Global Links’ targeted approach and ability to measure results and impacts in the regions in which they work. Their mission addresses the triple bottom line – social, environmental and economic indicators of success. They make the donation process very easy and efficient. Earlier this year I attended a presentation by Global Links about rebuilding Haiti’s healthcare system. The presentation showed the importance and value of items like tables, chairs and beds which many of us take for granted but provide dignity and comfort for those in underserved healthcare communities. Our company foresees an ongoing relationship with Global Links. They are an excellent organization with a life saving mission.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Global Links has been instrumental in helping my program the Medical Equipment Recycling Program in Farrell, PA meet our mission. We take in durable medcial equipment, clean it, refurbish it and then lend it to those who do not have the insurance or means to obtain the equipment they need to maintain their independence in daily living. We also take in items that can be sent overseas. These items go to Global Links who makes sure someone benefits from the items but Global Links also collects in items that my program desperately needs. It has been a beneficial partnership that has allowed both organizations to meet their missions and touch numerous lives in the US and all over the world!! We are honored to work with Global Links and they have gone out of there way to assist us!!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

We did a mission trip in March 2012 to the LaCroix Mission in Haiti . A big part of our mission was medical care. Global Links was a great partner in our mission, supplying medical supplies that were greatly needed. Our medical staff saw many patients. Another important element of the mission was teaching and encouraging the Haitian medical staff, and providing supplies for them to work with.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Global Links is an outstanding organization! I volunteer regularly (about once a month, for several years now) with a group from my church. We sort and package surplus medical supplies to be sent to needy areas. They collect used or surplus medical supplies and ship them to hospitals all over the world that lack a lot of basic equipment and common medical and surgical supplies. Most of the work of sorting and packing is done by volunteers. They save things that would normally be discarded and help out doctors and patients with necessary medical equipment and basic supplies. We've sorted suture, gauze bandages, surgical drapes, catheters of all sorts, all kinds of things (it's different each time!) There are even people who refurbish old hospital beds, wheelchairs, etc. I've collected crutches from people on freecycle and taken them in for Global Links, too. It's very moving to see photos and read letters from people who've been helped by these donations.

Advisor

Rating: 5

I have followed the work of Global Links for several years, and am consistently impressed by their commitment to growing their impact while keeping administrative costs low. Because they share the stories of both the environmental and human impact of what they do so effectively, they are blessed with hundreds of volunteers who donate thousands of hours each year, and an ever-growing roster of hospital and community partners. They are also mindful of their role as ambassadors for those served by their donations of medical equipment and supplies. Global Links actively seek opportunities to engage and educate the community (including hospitals, businesses, corporations and the general public) about their work in order to draw attention to both the medical needs of those in resource poor countries, and to the many opportunities to be a part of Global Links' work. I also have noted their creativity in developing new ways for the general public to participate in collecting and redirecting materials.

Donor

Rating: 5

Excellent organization which aids all of the America's and other countries as needed.

Donor

Rating: 5

I have been working with Global Links for over 10 years and I am extremely impressed with their commitment to help those in need here in our community as well as overseas. My office is the hub for donations from fellow colleagues, patients and friends. We are not only helping the planet by responsibly getting rid of unused equipment and devices, but we are donating these things to an organization whose sole mission is to help those in need. Global Links is structured and organized, dedicated and sincere in reaching the poorest of poor to give them a more meaningful life. As a donor organization, it fills us with pride that we are doing the right thing. Thank you Global Links!

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a volunteer at Global Links, I see first hand the items that are to se sent to needy clinics and I am overjoyed to be a part of this organization. Global Links is not only helping environmentally, but more importantly, it is making a positive impact on the lives of many individuals who are dying for things that most of us take for granted. Global Links staff are always energetic and positive. I love being part of one of the best non-profit orgainization this side of the Mississippi!

Client Served

Rating: 5

Global Links has been supplying my organization for the past three years now. With their help, we've been able to set up clinics in parts of rural Honduras and Panama that otherwise wouldn't have access to medical care. Global Links also hosts regular talks about health disparities across the world that renew my passion for serving central america, and open my eyes to the complexities of the issues we're working together to overcome.

suemakin

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Global Links is a non-profit that specializes in supplying medical equipment and supplies to developing countries. I worked at a mission hospital in Malawi that received sutures and other supplies from Global Links. The uniquely wonderful thing about Global Links is that they only supply what you ask for and need. They do not send just any medical donated junk, but only what you have asked for. This means that they spend a lot of time sorting through what they have to find what you need. Their donated sutures have saved hundreds of lives in Africa.

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Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

My personal experience with Global Links goes back 15 years. Global Links provided surgical sutures to hospitals I worked at in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Malawi. These hospitals were serving the poorest of the poor. Global Links always responded to requests in a specific and useful manner, always coming up with what we needed. Global Links does not send junk, does not serve to unload surplus supplies from pharmaceutical companies, and does respond to real needs and requests. I worked as an American, board-certified obstetrician/gynecologist missionary doctor. The sutures from Global Links helped real people and saved lives.

Client Served

Rating: 5

Recently we treated a patient from the Vaik region of Armenia. He recovered 25 days after cystectomy with ileocystoplasty . In operating on this patient, we used sutures from the Global Links Suture Program, which generously decided to make donations to our hospital 5 years ago. For the past five years we have been receiving sutures and have used them in more than 70 major surgical procedures similar to this one, as well as in more than 2,000 smaller operations. We have never had any complications when using the sutures. All the types of sutures donated were exactly the same as those used in our regular work. We can say that the vast majority of those operations performed wouldn’t have been possible without the donated sutures. That is why we have let all our patients know how much they owe to the Global Links Suture Program for their successful treatment, and they are extremely grateful. This patient, in particular, wanted to express his thanks to Global Links and all US clinics participating in the Global Links Suture Program.
Here are this patient’s words: ”I was informed that our surgeons used sutures from Global Links when operating on me. I want to send my warm thanks to Global Links Suture Program and their suppliers for the great job which they constantly do for patients in many different countries. I will remember their help for the rest of my life.
Victor.

Lois7

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am Lois Weeks, a retired nurse, who, along with a team of American nurse midwives and nurses have been working with the comadronas in Santa Avelina. Today we went to the Puesto de Salud in San Juan Cotzal to learn what resources would be available for our comadronas and the mothers and babies they care for. We were impressed beyond anything we had expected! The doctors and nurses seemed to be very vested in the clinic, the care they are giving, and the improvements that are happening. They have started some very needed programs to teach comadronas and families in the rural areas. They have improved their facilities and equipment, much due to your organization. They (and we) are very excited about the higher level of care they now can give. Their decision to move outside the clinic walls and go to the communities to teach families and comadronas is dramatic. I want to thank-you for your support for this area! We have come to love the people here, and rejoice with them!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

Conocia el trabajo de de Global Links porque los aportes de esta organizacion han tenido un impacto muy posotivo en la atencion de pacientes en el oriente de Cuba con patologias neuroquirurgicas, pero en esta primera visita a la sede cetral de Pittsburgh he visto que detras de todos estos aportes a pacientes de paises en desarrollo hay un impresionante equipo de personas maravillosas consagradas a su trabajo y muchos voluntarios de alma y corazon para estas nobles tareas.
Gracias Global Links por existir y por contribuir en la mejoria de la calidad de vida ya atencion de tantas personas.
Ustedes demuestran en la practica que un mundo mejor tambien es posible.

I learned about Global Links because the support this organization has provided to the western part of Cuba has had a positive impact on the medical care of patients with neurosurgical pathologies. But in this, my first visit to their headquarters in Pittsburgh, I have seen that behind all this support to countries in development is a wonderful group of people dedicated to their work and many volunteers dedicated in heart and soul to this noble work.

Thanks Global Links for existing and contributing to the improvement of the quality life and medical care of so many people. You are proof that a better world is possible.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have witnessed the passion that drives Global Links first hand during my time as a volunteer. It can be heard in the enthusiastic voices of the staff and seen in the dedicated longtime volunteers. It's truly an amazing group of people furthering an amazing cause.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I love being able to not only take usable medical supplies out of the wastestream, but make sure they are well sorted and able to be readily used/re-used by partner clients in Latin America and the Caribbean. This is truly conservation at work. Volunteering at Global Links is always rewarding!

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am the Director of Guatemala Surgery/Common Hope and we provide surgical services to the poor of that country who have no other alternatives. We do about 150-180 operations yearly and when you talk surgery, you talk suture.

We found out the hard way how expensive suture is years ago when our ususal donor closed. Subsequently, we have searched high and low for suture to accommodate our needs and the friendly, helpful and sincere people at Global Links have been wonderful. They understand our situation. I am very impressed.

Alessandra B.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I volunteered at Global Links for some time until 2006 and I have been amazed by it since the beginning.
I liked the seriousness of the working staff and that of my fellow volunteers, I respected the knowledge of the medical consultants and I admired the precision of the job done there.
It is amazing how we can collect life-saving equipments and medicines that we would OTHERWISE THROW AWAY and just redirect them to whom is in need.
But not just somewhere in the world, that it would be good enough already, but to specific and carefully chosen hospital structures where Global Links has trusted people ready to distribute them fairly.
I am looking forward to find the time to go back to volunteer.
The most emotional moment was when I had to pack infants oxygen masks, I couldn't believe that I was so lucky to be the one touching something that would be able to save a little life.
I believe so much in it that even when I stopped volunteering, just for personal reasons, I tried to help in every other way , with donations or just informing people.

socialworker05

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I enjoyed sorting medical supplies while talking with the other volunteers. In the case of the supplies that Global Links sends abroad, one person's trash really is another person's treasure. I did not realize that some hospitals abroad have so few supplies.

Donor

Rating: 5

I was cleaning out my mother's house and had items to donate --
shower chair, walker, canes, etc. and saw an ad for pick up of donated items close to my home. We took the items, they were placed in a truck right away. Everyone was very friendly. We received notification of the donated items afterwards. It was all very simple and certainly served our needs to donate items.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I Know Global Links to have provided the best service to needy foreign countries than any one else in this field

They visit each site before hand and ask the recipients what they need and provide only usable items that are in workign order and adapted to the local electrical system .

I highly recomend Global Links to any person or organization that wants to make a difference

Frank Suatoni MD

Volunteer

Rating: 5

i loved volunteering with global links. The staff is very friendly and the work is fun. The fact that all of the supplies that they recover would have been thrown away and placed in a US landfill is sad, but it's great that they have found a system to retrieve the supplies and get them to people that need them!!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a health care professional it is my pleasure to share with you what an outstanding job Global Links does in providing medical supplies, and equipment needs to the less fortunate. This organization reduces waste by re-cyling gently used medical furniture, equipment and supplies. Hospital nursing unit donate supplies that could possibly discarded into Global Links collection bins and funnel them to those in need. They are dedicated individuals that lead volunteers such as myself by overseeing our work as we sort and pack badly needed supplies. Global Links supports sustainability in all aspects of their work.

Thank you for allowing me this opportunity to speak up for the excellent work of this fine organization.

Janette R. Curran RN BSHCA

J Brown

Donor

Rating: 5

This organization provides such crucial services with great efficiency and focus. It leverages a set of relatively small resources (donated equipment and supplies, money and volunteer support) into huge, even life-saving, improvements to healthcare provided in developing countries. In fact, it goes one step further and has an environmental benefit by taking waste in this country and turning it into resources for another country.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Global links works on both sides of the problem: taking surplus equipment off the hands of the hospital systems and finding a need for it in the developing world. It does this on a shoestring budget with a dedicated and highly competent staff. I have worked with them as a donor, volunteer and beneficiary for my surgical international work in Haiti, Guyana, and Honduras. We have been able to provide care with their help.

The most important reason Global Links deserves this award is that they do an on-site analysis of needs and capabilities. For example, in Haiti they donate beds and chairs, rather than the high tech equipment which requires reliable electricity and service. They know the hospitals and personnel they are donating to. In Cuba, they can donate a mammography center because the clinical resources including personnel can support it.

When I was in Honduras, I saw the opposite too many times. A CT scanner left outside in the courtyard because the donor did not understand that it could not be used. Global Links works from a careful needs assessment to avoid these problems.

Volunteer

Rating: 4

Global links collects technically expired, but not obsolete, medical supplies from hospitals and medical providers, and redistributes/donates them to global recipients in need. It is a crucial service that not only provides vital and life-saving supplies to countries and medical providers worldwide, but it also prevents the unnecessary filling of landfills with products which are still usable. The organizers are passionate and dedicated to the purpose and welcome volunteers in an organized and meaningful way.

Donor

Rating: 4

As a member of the University of Pittsburgh Hillman Cancer Center Research team, we often have extra supplies from studies that are closed or non-expired items in study kits that have an expiration date on the study boxes. Most of these items are lab supplies, syringes, slides, collection tubes, shipping boxes and the like.
To add these items to a land fill would be a crime, especially with the current global medical needs. My supervisors, being community minded as well as enviornmentally friendly, agreed to allow me to seek out an organization that would accept these items. Global Links was the answer to my prayers. Not only have they been extremely helpful in teaching me what items can be donated, but they are physically helpful when I arrive with a car load of boxes!
Thanks to the Global Links organization as well as the staff for being such a large part of the pro-active work to assist the less fortunate while keeping our planet less cluttered with unwanted supplies.

drmramor

General Member of the Public

Rating: 4

Global links is TRULY a global non-profit, bring medical supplies to foreign countries that would only be thrown away here because they are the old models, and have been replaced. At this time in history, I believe this is a great need. We are defending many nations fights for freedom, and casualties are inevitable. Medical supplies from GLOBAL LINKS would be more than necessary - that would be critical!

bennett9999

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Great place to volunteer. It's a green way to help the environment and also to help struggling 3rd World hospitals.

Donor

Rating: 5

Hayley from Global Links has been great to work with. I am the coordinator of the green team at St. Clair Hospital and have worked with her for a few years. We have an active donation program where we are able to donate old medical equipment, supplies, etc.... It is great to see an organization recycle and reuse medical supplies and equipment and to improve health outcomes in other countries.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have led a nursing student community health experience in Managua, Nicaragua for the past 15 years and have directly witnessed what Global Links has done in Nicaragua. In addition to giving me small, portable health care supplies which are able to be independently transported in luggage, I have seen the difference that larger Global Links donations have made. During each of these 15 years, I have taken students to tour the Berta Calderon Women's Hospital, the national reference hospital and a recipient of significant donations from Global Links. I have directly observed the improvements in the quantity and quality of the equipment and the effect that it has had on the work of the staff in the labor and delivery area and the comfort of the patients and the care that they receive as a result.

Purplish

Donor

Rating: 5

Global Links helps in so many different ways: their donations of medical equipment and supplies directly affect and improve the lives of people throughout Latin America and the Caribbean; these donated materials would have otherwise been sent to landfills here in the US. The hospitals, doctors, and equipment manufacturers and distributors in the US benefit by knowing that they have an impact on improving the quality of life in other countries and reducing waste at home. The organization is run by incredible people who are committed to the mission -- you can be sure that your donations to Global Links will be put to good use!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This charity does fantastic work in terms of recycling surplus medical supplies that would otherwise go into landfills. But it does SO MUCH MORE! Using volunteers, it sorts and organizes these materials and matches them with the needs of specific hospitals in the world's poorest countries, shipping them off to save lives there.

I am proud to be a volunteer and donor of Global Links.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Gathering medical supplies and packing them in to boxes; how mundane. But every box I helped to pack served in two significant ways:
First, these were items that were discarded. They would have gone to a landfill further scarring our landscape.
Second, these supplies would SAVE LIVES of patients in desperate need in the very poorest countries in the world. Instead of being stitched up with fishing line or even cotton thread, patients would receive appropriate suture, considerably improving their chances of a good outcome. And studies show clearly that when family members survive there is less inclination to have larger families.

Donor

Rating: 5

I think this is a wonderful organization. I love the fact that so much is recycled and your organization really treats the WORLD population as one big family, which indeed we are.
My daughter volunteered at Global Links and absolutely loved the experience.

Donor

Rating: 5

IN 2004 I DONATED MEDICAL EQUIPMENT FROM MY LATE HUSBAND'S OFFICE WHICH WENT TO CUBA-TO A NEPHROLOGY INSTUTUTE IN HAVANA (AS I RECALL).
MY FATHER WAS BORN AND RAISED IN CUBA, OF QUAKER MISSIONARY PARENTS; IT WAS REWARDING TO ME TO KNOW THAT THIS DONATION WILL BE HELPFUL TO THAT COUNTRY. I ALSO KNEW THAT IT HONORED MY HUSBAND'S MEMORY.