by Amref Health Africa

ROME aise – 2020 was especially the year of the pandemic for everyone. Covid has shown the world how health is a global issue, imposing a common front for its protection. Precisely in this very complicated year, a new Italian reality was born, in the context of international cooperation in the health field, which puts into practice the lessons learned in many years of field work thanks to the union of two NGOs very active in Africa. : Amref Health Africa Italia and the Medical Collaboration Committee .

The two non-governmental organizations, which boast over 50 years of experience, have therefore created the new Amref CCM Foundation, to better respond to the increasing health needs, thanks to a higher deployment of skills and resources and a more efficient and effective organizational capacity. The Foundation will therefore continue the action of the two realities, this time united, in the most remote and vulnerable areas of Africa, with the aim of guaranteeing access to health to all the African communities it manages to meet, by any means to its provision.

“In 1968 I too was among those young people, doctors and medical students, who looked at the right to health and the Hippocratic Oath as something universal and dutiful. Our mission that led us to create the CCM, an enterprising, passionate and non-denominational organization. ” explains Ugo Marchisio, doctor, president of the CCM and councilor of the new Foundation, summarizing the value bases common to the two realities that allowed the start of the dialogue and guided the merger process.

“They have been 52 intense years, which have seen a profound change in doing and being actors of international cooperation. We have professionalized, moving by projects, structuring ourselves in Italy and Africa. Always guided by two key concepts: the universality of the right to be treated, also and above all for the poorest and most vulnerable people, and the horizontal gaze with the communities where we operate, which has always translated into true collaboration and commitment to bring the ability to do it alone. My last great satisfaction as President of the Medical Collaboration Committee – CCM is the birth of this Foundation, based on those key concepts we have always supported, first of all the universal right of every human being to health, personal and collective “.

Sharing this vision confirms the commitment of the new Foundation to the poorest people in the world, those who find themselves in fragile and marginalized contexts, especially in sub-Saharan Africa but also in Italy. Together, more communities will be reached, cared for and supported and the union of knowledge and skills will allow them to act with greater force, increasing their impact and efficiency.

“We are facing an unprecedented challenge, which focuses on health. Resisting today, to rebuild in the coming months and years, where Covid has struck, is the task of organizations like ours. Amref has recently published research on the effects of the pandemic on HIV / AIDS, gender-based violence and youth anxieties in Africa. They tell us about a long wave of Covid, on aid services to populations in difficulty, which worries us. For a stronger response we need a more compact third sector world. For this reason – continuing a path that began for us long before the pandemic – we are preparing to carry out a new merger, with another organization. United against industry fragmentation, united for greater impact in strengthening fragile health systems. Covid has accelerated and consolidated our vision of the future of the world of organizations: more “solid” subjects, for more complex challenges and long-term changes. ” – explains Guglielmo Micucci, Director of Amref Health Africa Italy and now at the helm of the new Amref Foundation – CCM which at the time of its establishment has about 60 development programs in Ethiopia, South Sudan, Kenya, Somalia, Uganda, Senegal and Italy, a staff in Italy of about 50 employees in 5 locations – Rome, Milan, Padua, Pisa and Turin. – “The merger operations in Italy can be counted on the fingers of one hand, and of these, two were carried out by Amref.

But, for us, it has long been the most convincing way to develop a sector, which has seen non-profit institutions go from 230,000 in 2001 to 360,000 in 2018, with an average annual growth of 2% (ISTAT). Today the meeting with the CCM gives this new subject a strengthening of skills in the health sector, a greater presence in African territories and in Italian regions. These are just a few aspects that will allow us to be more prepared for complex challenges and ambitious responses ”.

Universality and collaboration, impact and efficiency indicate the path of the new Foundation, born inheriting in its DNA the certainty that the protagonists of change are and will always be the beneficiaries of the interventions themselves and that African operators and the development of their skills are and will always be at the center of the action, so that Africans are to take care of Africa every day.

Amref Health Africa is the largest non-profit healthcare organization operating in Sub-Saharan Africa since 1957, the year of its foundation in Nairobi, Kenya. Amref Health Africa in Italy began its activity in 1987 with the aim of strengthening the international commitment to the health of the weakest.

The Medical Collaboration Committee – CCM was founded in Turin in 1968 by a group of doctors committed to promoting and ensuring the right to health for all, especially the most vulnerable in Africa and Italy. (aise)

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