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Meet Stephanie Nyirahumure

Community Health Worker, Rwanda

  • Featuring:
  • Stephanie Nyirahumure
  • Published:
  • 5 June 2020
  • Featuring:
  • Stephanie Nyirahumure
  • Published:
  • 5 June 2020

Stephanie is a Community Health Worker, who we met while on assignment for Malaria No More documenting the progress Rwanda has made in the fight against malaria. 

Malaria No More is an advocacy organization that is committed to creating a world in which no one dies from a mosquito bite. They are working tirelessly to mobilize political commitment, secure funding, and support the innovation needed to end malaria within our generation. Malaria No More together with local and global partners are helping to play a critical role in saving lives and strengthen healthcare systems in malaria-affected countries to help combat malaria and other health threats. While in Rwanda, we learnt more about some of the systems and innovations that are being used to help combat malaria.

For Stephanie, being a community health worker has brought her a sense of purpose, empowered her and instilled within her a sense of self-confidence.

Access to healthcare should not be a luxury and yet for so many people it is. In certain parts of Africa, for example, the only healthcare facilities available are clinics or hospitals located in main cities, which are often hundreds of kilometres from villages.

This means that people from surrounding villages have to travel long distances to see doctors or nurses. The journey is long and expensive, and people sometimes need to spend hours waiting to be seen by a healthcare professional, which means they need to take time off work.

It’s often difficult to fully comprehend the full reach of the positive impacts having access to healthcare can have on a community. Families who previously spent their savings on trying to stay healthy are now able to invest in building a house to provide a safe place for their children. Women can work and support their families, and children are able to attend school without having to take time off due to being sick.
Community health workers, like Stephanie, are changing the face of healthcare in Rwanda, which is playing a huge role in the fight against malaria and other diseases. It is also playing an important role in uplifting and empowering women. Mothers previously had to stay home with sick children or loved ones, or spend hours and often days travelling to take their children to see a doctor. This is slowly changing, which has enabled more women to focus on their education or economic pursuits.

In light of the Covid-19 pandemic, we are more aware now than ever before of the disproportionate access to healthcare around the world. We’re incredibly grateful for the individuals and organisations that are working tirelessly to address this and ensure that healthcare is accessible for all.

Watch our film to hear Stephanie's story and learn more about the important role she is playing in her community as a Community Health Worker.

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Learn more about the work Malaria No More is doing and how you can support them here.

Meet Stephanie Nyirahumure

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