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The Fistula Foundation

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Health, International, International Development, Specifically Named Diseases

Mission: Fistula Foundation works to heal women suffering from obstetric fistula by funding treatment, surgeon training, and medical equipment. To date, we have funded fistula treatment in 31 countries.

Results: Fistula Foundation is the largest private charitable foundation not accepting government funding supporting fistula treatment globally. Wherever possible, we work to empower dedicated local doctors in developing countries. We fund fistula surgery, surgeon training, the building of hospitals and operating rooms that are dedicated to fistula surgery, as well as “mobile” care clinics in rural regions of the world where no hospitals exist. Would you like to know more? The real heroes are the partner organizations, the surgeons and the patients. All around the world, miracles are happening for young women living places like Ethiopia, Afghanistan and Bangladesh. We invite you to take a moment now to visit our website and to learn how our donors' dollars are being put to work. Learn about the challenges of healing women in war zones and meet dedicated local surgeons who work every day to treat women who are suffering. Why wait? Take the journey with us right now. Let it inform you, and perhaps deepen your own life and perspective.

Target demographics: the one million women worldwide who currently suffer from the childbirth injury obstetric fistula, which renders a woman incontinent until she can receive a reparative surgery, like those our donors help us fund.

Direct beneficiaries per year: 5,680 women received free, safe fistula repair surgeries. We also helped our partners throughout Africa and Asia by funding medical equipment and supplies, by funding surgeon training to expand the pool of surgeons who are able to perform more complex repairs, and by working with our partners to increase patient access to care.

Geographic areas served: countries throughout Africa and Asia, having funded fistula treatment in 31 countries since adopting a global mission in 2009.

Programs: obstetric fistula repair surgeries, patient identification, education and transportation, the training of obstetric fistula surgeons, and providing supplies and equipment to partners when needed to ensure that surgeries are conducted in as safe an environment as possible.

Community Stories

23 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

2 michelejoy62

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

In 2005 I read an article about Fistula Foundation in the San Jose Mercury News (neighbors of the Main office). I was so saddened and touched that I was moved to get involved. As a CNM with high risk maternity skills, I found an orginazation to get my hands-on need to help; a trip to Ethiopia to help ground break a Maternal Center of Excellence to help the midwives prevent fistula with education and equipment. Upon my return, I started donating directly to FF. During my tenure at UCSF School of Med, a few of my colleagues volunteered with surgical services, these are outstanding physicians. My respect for these amazing doctors, Kate Grant, and the tireless work of the many volunteers keeps growing. My #1 donation site annually followed by Planned Parenthood. Women Hold Up Half the Sky! So amazingly told by Nicholas Kristof in the book by that name.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I've been involved with this charity for years. As a Maternal/Newborn nurse and
Women's Health Nurse Practitioner, I know the devastation a childbirth injury and the loss of a child in childbirth brings. I don't know of any other charity that does so much for so little. A fistula repair surgery in the countries served costs less than 10% of what it would in the U.S. I am happy and proud to support this organization.

5

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am a certified wound, ostomy and continence nurse working in Reno, NV, who deals with fistulas in my work. They are devastating for the patient and really difficult to treat, in the best of medical circumstances.
Through reading Nicholas Kristof in the New York Times, I became aware of the Fistula Foundation.
That anyone would even want to take up this cause is amazing, but furthermore, the organization spends 82% of its donations on the actual cause, while only 7% goes to overhead and 11% to fundraising.
I was in San Jose recently and stopped by their headquarters to give them a cheer. They are a dedicated, passionate and lean machine and so worthy of your contribution.

3

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I know for first hand experience that you are making a great contribution working with one of our partner organisations
Brian Hancock. chairman Uganda Childbirth Injury Fund.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Great organisation with honest and transparent people. Thanks to Dr Steve and Lindsey for their keen interest and honest supervision. May God provide more resources to enable us reach more women in all affected corners of the world.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I'm the program coordinator for Beyond Fistula in Kenya. We are involved in the reintegration of young girls and women post fistula surgery. We are so grateful to Fistula Foundation for their support of our program and all they are doing to alleviate the suffering of women in Kenya!!

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

We are the US based sister organization of CCBRT in Tanzania - one of the largest providers of comprehensive fistula treatment in East Africa. Fistula Foundation provides incredible support and resources, and they are always willing to share their knowledge. Their partnership has enabled us to improve the lives of thousands of women; we're stronger and more effective because of the work they are doing, and the work they are supporting.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As a fistula surgeon having worked in over a dozen African countries I have frequently come across projects funded by the fistula foundation. I can say from experience the money goes to projects on the ground to make a real impact on fistula repairs and the lives of countless Women. As well as supporting surgeons work they are actively supporting education programs for safe motherhood promotion.
I rate the organisation very highly.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I first read about the Fistula Foundation in the book "Half the Sky". Even as a physician who chose to practice as a home birth midwife, I was unaware of such birth injuries as fistulas. If a labor wasn't progressing, we transferred to a nearby hospital.

I have donated to the Fistula Foundation for over ten years. It supports truly life changing treatment for so many women in so many countries, isolated and outcast by their birth injuries. It thrills me to be able to contribute to actually giving a new life to a woman in need.

Linley E.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

This foundation provides a service that most women in the Western world would not even understand: my support for the foundation is given because i believe that women around the world can support each other. I work in the area of obstetrics and women's health and the long term effects of fistula are devastating... but so is the effect of simple surgery and recovery. let's help to change lives for good

1 Mal W.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Some years ago I worked as a consultant to the Fistula Foundation, helping Kate Grant increase the effectiveness of the organization's fundraising activities. Afterwards, I continued to advise Kate from time to time on fundraising and governance. Recently I agreed to join the board of directors -- because I am so very impressed with the effectiveness and the efficiency of the organization's operations. I've worked with hundreds of nonprofits over the years. The Fistula Foundation is one of the most impressive organizations I've ever come across.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

As a pelvic health physiotherapist, I have treated only a few women with obstetric fistula because it is relatively rare here in Canada. however this devastating, but treatable, condition is so prevalent in certain parts of the world where women are so vulnerable in so many ways. This charity helps to provide the care for these women to save their lives from unthinkable pain, disability and ostracization. The communication from this organization is sensitive and respectful. I received a postcard personally signed by the fistula surgeon in Kenya to thank me for my donation. I fully support the work of the Fistula Foundation.

Ganesh D.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Many thanks for the great help, a very special thanks to Kate Grant and the entire team of Fistula Foundation.

Everyone at Kathmandu Model Hospital thanked Fistula Foundation for the funds and greatly appreciated their help very much.

Fistula foundation’s help means a lot for all of us here at phect-NEPAL in general and at Kathmandu Model Hospital in particular.
They are doing excellent charity works in the developing world to reduce the sufferings of our helpless women.

Michele104

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I first learned about FF from an article in the SJMercury. It was the first I had ever heard of this injury and an excellent education on fistula and the life impact for those on earth with so little. The article promulgated me into the need to educate others and spread the word about FF.
The ability of FF to bring world leaders in the repair of obstetrical fistula to the remote bedside of an injured woman and to repair her life for $60 is phenomenal.
Living in the neighborhood of FF HQ, I give my time when ever they call. The work they do is God's work.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 3

It was during the launch of Fistula Foundation and Astellas partnership in Nairobi that I noted the amazing work done by the foundation to help hundreds of women access appropriate treatment for fistula. The inspiring and dedicated individuals like Dr. Mabeya and Kate Grant who have put smiles back to thousands of women who had been devastated by obstetric fistula. Keep up the good work and we the advocates of the end fistula campaign shall always be available to offer whatever support needed from us.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I stated my role as a professional with expertise in this field. I am a professional because I am a registered nurse. I am an expert in this field because after a difficult delivery of my first daughter I developed a recto-vaginal fistula...so, I had first hand experience with a suffering shame.

That was thirty-seven years ago, I lived in Vermont at that time...I was blessed with a husband and family to support me and went on to have a successful surgery with a truly gifted physician. Mine is a story of gratitude.

When I came across the Fistula Foundation I was overwhelmed because my sympathy for these young girls and women is deeply intense.

This foundation deserves every star I gave it and more.

3

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The Fistula Foundation has helped the Edna Adan University Hospital in Hargeisa, Somaliland, to complete and equip our operating Theatres. Once this was done, we started to provide surgical repair for the women who needed it. The surgeon was provided by the Fistula Foundation who also covered the cost involved. There are now many women who have been repaired and who are 'dry' and able to lead a normal life. Some have returned to their husbands and have come back to our prenatalclinic for follow upof their pregnancy ! This is the greatest gift we can give to the women who have suffered this terrible and humiliating condition that is an obstetrical Fistula. On behalf of the women who have been repaired and on behalf of our hospital, I wish to express our since appreciation for your support for the Fistula Foundation and for our strong partneshipto help humanity. Edna Adan Ismail, Founder of Edna Adan University Hospital.

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have just returned from Western Kenya where I was able to witness, first hand, the women who have been repaired at Gynocare through One By One. The Fistula Foundation has enabled One By One to offer many more surgeries this year. Thank you to the Fistula Foundation on behalf of the women and girls being helped to regain their lives.

1 kkdvashon

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am president of the Board of One by One at www.fightfistula.org. Fistula Foundation helps fund the fistula repairs we do at our Fistula Care Clinic, Gynocare, in western Kenya. Fistula Foundation pays for the fistula surgery and care, and we identify new fistula patients, provide transportation to Gynocare, and train repaired fistula survivors to teach their communities about fistula and its causes. These Regional Representatives also identify new fistula patients for treatment. We also have fistula educational programs in schools in Kenya. Working with FistulaFoundation has has made it possible to repair over 240 women so far this year and transform their lives. Great cause!

1

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Fistula Foundation has emerged as a dynamic, resourceful, creative funder in obstetric fistula, a condition suffered by the most marginalized and underserved women in the world. As a clinical insider, this organization continues to impress me with their efficient, respectful use of donor funds matched only by their skill at ascertaining and supporting programs and centres that mirror these results for the greatest good of the women served.