IAHPC is a wonderful organisation which succeeds in fostering international development of Palliative Care on an extremely tight budget, thanks to the incredible amount of work performed by the people working for the organisation. I am proud and honoured to serve as a Board member for IAHPC.
I have been the recipient of travelling fellowships which have enabled me to plan and deliver much needed training programs to eager, highly motivated interdisciplinary palliative care teams. The IAHPC is one organization that I am fully behind because I have seen first hand the conditions that physicians, nurses, counsellors, spiritual care providers, and volunteers must work in. The IAHPC is completely dedicated to supporting professionals from around the world to connect and share information and resources. They tirelessly promote education in the field and support leaders, and people in positions of power to put pressure on governing bodies to change regulations to benefit the most vulnerable people. The IAHPC must be financially support in their work because they bring together people who have the knowledge, the skills, the power, and the motivation to make a difference.
My first contact with IAHPC was in 1993, when the Founder (Dr Josephine Magno from the Philippines) and her initial colleagues, visited me in Washington when I was trying to raise funds for the vision we had for palliative care in Africa. Since then I have watched this organisation grow, assisting people in poorer countries to bring relief to the suffering. I was most surprised to be chosen as the first person to receive their Vittorio Ventafrida Award in 2002, as a recognition for initiating palliative care in Africa and Asia. This brought to me a gift of 2,000$ for my use. At that time our team was struggling with personal debts and growing families. They needed a credit union. The money went into the credit union and started it off. This has been run completely by the employees of Hospice Africa Uganda and gives relief from financial burden to many. Those on our team work very hard and under difficult circumstances to bring relief of suffering and suffer personal losses as they lose patients and support families through to bereavement. IAHPC has supported students from poorer countries to attend our programmes for training like the Diploma in palliative medicine, conferred by Makerere University but owned by HAU. As a Board Member, I am in a position to be part of decision making and to be privy to their accounts. I am quite convinced that this organisation makes a great impression on the spread of palliative care to the poorer areas of the world, and works with enormous integrity.
Review from Guidestar