In the last of our series on doctors from Burundi, who have undergone the HelpMeSee training at Wenzhou Medical University, meet Anodine Daliko Nishimwe.
Life in Burundi is difficult for many. Eighty percent of the population lives in poverty. Most exist on subsistence farming. Working the land is part of life. Crops are your income and if you cannot see to tend to your land, there is no money.
Eye disease and untreated cataracts are rampant in Burundi and more ophthalmologists are needed to support the current ones who are about fifteen. Training is required, but Burundi does not have an ophthalmology program. After first studying general medicine in Romania, at the “Carol Davila” University of Medicine and Pharmacy of Bucharest, Anodine went back to her country where she worked for about 10 months as a general practitioner at a local hospital and almost a year as a technical advisor in HIV matters into a program founded by the Global Fund through a national program of fighting against AIDS. During that time she was exposed to the real situation about the lack of sufficient ophthalmologists in Burundi, especially with cataract surgeons, which encouraged her to become an ophthalmologist in order to help the cataract blind in Burundi to see again. Those who want to help, like Anodine, must leave the country to study. Luckily Anodine discovered the HelpMeSee Manual Small Incision training program offered at Wenzhou Medical University in China.
Anodine says charities from America and China usually come to Burundi to help, but she wants her country to have enough ophthalmologists. And HelpMeSee is helping those like Anodine, as well as others, with a mission of training many more cataract specialists who can make a real impact to cure the over 60 million blind and severely visually impaired across the world with untreated cataracts.
If we can eventually train thousands of surgeons a year who, in turn, can perform 1,000 additional cataract removal surgeries annually, we can restore sight to millions, not just in Burundi but elsewhere.
It’s time to make your tax-deductible gift now.