As a creative consultant, it is not often that I get to work on a project that both pays me and also contributes to the development and well-being of Uganda. I would like to introduce you to such a project.
I met Pratheepan “Deep” Gulasekaram in DC at the Clinton Global Diaspora Forum. He, along with a crew of determined colleagues put their skills together in the wake of the Asian tsunami and built a fully functioning hospital in Sri Lanka. They successfully negotiated a public-private partnership with the Sri Lankan Ministry of Health to complete and ensure the long-term success of the newly constructed Matara Children’s Hospital.
After the completion and hand over of the project that was recognized by Bill Clinton and George Bush Sr., they have set out to build a children’s hospital in Uganda. “Project Heart: Uganda” has already broken ground. The walls and roof are already up and completion is in sight.
After a long talk with Deep last month, I agreed to assist their efforts to connect to members of the East African Diaspora that would bring value to their initiative. Not because they are my clients, but because it is a much needed initiative that will bring value to Uganda’s medical system. Additionally, I wanted to share this project with you as a plea for all of us to help support this initiative to make sure it is successfully launched with as much of our buy-in as possible. After all, it will be our family members that will benefit in the long run. The above video of one such child who was helped by these very same doctors to repair her heart
Here is a project that is reaching out directly for us to be part of its success and the re-invention of Uganda’s medical services & facilities. For once, it is not another aid project that FAILS to request to partner with us. It is a project that we all know could save the life of one of our family members.
On Sept. 24th, “Project Heart: Uganda” is having a fund-raising event in Los Angeles. If you are in California and are interested in meeting Deep and his inspiring colleagues, I am sure they won’t fail to inspire you with the vision that they have for the hospital.
Here are some things you can do to help this project:
- If you would like to attend, please do register at Eventbrite.
- If you are unable to attend, you can still contribute to the success of the project with a small donation on the same Eventbrite event page
- Share the World Children’s Initiative Facebook page and event page within your network and follow them on Twitter for updates on their progress
- Support them on Causes
I look forward to seeing us all rise to the occasion for this initiative. Even if all you do is donate $1.00 (though I secretly hope it is more than that, nearly $3 billion in remittances is sent to East Africa annually-let’s put some of it towards a sustainability initiative). If you’d like more information, I’d be happy to put you in touch with Deep and his team. A new web site with more information is in the works that will keep all of you updated on the project.