On 29 August 2023, Rotary Kenya and the non-profit medical research organization Drugs for Neglected Diseases initiative (DNDi) signed a five-year agreement to collaborate on research and access activities that support the health needs of neglected patients and communities.
During the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) held at the DNDi offices in Nairobi, Prof. Samuel Kariuki, the Eastern Africa Director, outlined the collaboration areas and their significance for Kenyan communities.
‘This MoU is a great step forward in working together to reach grassroots communities as we raise awareness of the discovery and delivery of life-saving treatments for neglected populations. The synergy between DNDi and Rotary will empower communities through various activities, such as education campaigns on NTDs and other diseases, medical camps, and fundraising, among others,’ said Prof. Kariuki.
Rotary Kenya, which operates in Kenya, Ethiopia, South Sudan, and Eritrea, is a constituent of Rotary District 9212 and part of Rotary International, a global non-profit service organization founded in 1905. They focus on seven areas of operation, including disease prevention, environmental conservation, and climate change, all of which have a significant connection to the diseases that DNDi seeks to address.
‘Rotary Kenya and DNDi share some common goals. It is important that we explore partnerships to tackle the complex issues that communities face, create positive impact in the communities of operations, and serve their needs,’ said Leonard Ithau, Governor, Rotary District 9212.
The main areas of cooperation will include:
- Creating awareness of neglected diseases through communication and information dissemination to the public and community leaders.
- Reinforcing and building on existing clinical capacities and addressing site infrastructure needs where necessary.
- Providing on-site training in clinical research and engaging in knowledge and skills sharing in the field of pharmaceutical R&D.
- Engaging in joint fundraising efforts for the benefit of neglected patients.
- Fostering deeper engagement between neglected disease experts and grassroots communities in Eastern Africa.
Through this collaboration, Rotary Kenya and DNDi hope to make a significant difference in preventing and treating neglected tropical diseases by accelerating the development of new medicines and improving access to safe and effective treatments in the region.