Every year IHAN supports at least one program or field project in collaboration with a host country. In 2003, the project was undertaken in Somaliland and it focused on primary health care. With the generous support of many, including Johnson & Johnson, the project successfully accomplished the renovation of the general hospital of Hargeisa and it provided medical treatment for over 1,000 mothers and children of the region. In 2004 it was: The Literacy Project for HIV Orphans will take place in South Africa during the month of July. IHAN in conjunction with Penn State University, and two other NGO’s: Age in Action & HEARTBEAT sponsored fundraising events for this project throughout the year.
IHAN Visits Ghana and Works with OIC International
Earlier this year members of the IHAN Team visited Ghana and worked closely with OIC International. During the trip to Ghana, IHAN members including IHAN President, Sorosh Roshan, M.D., attended the OIC International Youth Summit. There they met with many aspiring, talented youths who are involved with OIC International in Ghana. Established in 1971, OIC International in Ghana provides training in vocational skills and offers counseling, job-placement, and follow-up services to disadvantaged, unskilled, and unemployed Ghanaian youth. OIC Ghana is a nationally recognized organization operating in the Greater Accra Region, the Western Region, the Asanti Region, Eastern Region and Brong Ahalfo Region, as well as Kumasi and Gyedu. Also during the trip the IHAN Team was introduced to several wonderful people including the Azari family and their two award winning children Salar and Kathayoon.
Africa is one of the fastest-growing regions in the world. However, the phenomenon of jobless growth, combined with the world’s youngest population, threatens progress. Youth employment is an economic issue for Africa. The lack of decent livelihood opportunities is one of the driving forces behind violence and organized crime. IHAN’s work in Ghana along with OICI Ghana seeks to strengthen the opportunities of the youth as well as reinforcing community values. The continent is full of an impressive pool of talented and creative youth and individuals. The ultimate goal is to establish and maintain a strong, self-reliant and prosperous Africa. This objective can only transpire by providing jobs to youths and promoting successful models of democracy and development.
In Ghana and across the African continent, young African entrepreneurs are successfully conceptualizing and implementing innovative solutions to key challenges facing their countries. At the OIC International Youth Summit in Ghana, IHAN team members where privileged to be able to listen to several youths speak about their successes and experiences as young entrepreneurs.
Despite having one of the fastest growing economies in the world, the future for many youths throughout the continent is bleak. If jobless growth continues, young Africans will continue to find themselves unemployed or, more frequently, underemployed in informal jobs. Creating employment is the biggest hurdle that African nations will have to overcome moving forward. Many who are working have very low earnings, which often translate to low productivity. Several speakers at the OIC Youth Convention held at Ghana spoke about these very circumstances facing aspiring youth today. Through training in vocational skills, counseling, job-placement, and follow-up services to disadvantaged, unskilled, and unemployed Ghanaian youth, IHAN’s involvement with OIC is making a difference in Ghana.
The economy of Ghana has a diverse and rich resource base and one of the highest income levels in Africa. It is also one of the top-ten fastest growing economies in the world and the fastest growing on the continent. Despite this, approximately sixty percent of Ghana’s unemployed can be found in the 15-24-age group. The Government of Ghana is focusing its efforts on encouraging young adults to take advantage of the technical and vocational opportunities offered in its Skills Training Programs such as those provided by OIC International. At the Youth Summit several incentives were designed to encourage Ghanaians abroad to take advantage of opportunities at home and, in the words of President John D. Mahama, “bring back home the experiences they have acquired over the years abroad.”
One of the main arguments made at the summit was the importance of the private sector and the collaboration between the Ghanaian government to ensure the development of jobs for the youth. Unemployment remains one of the greatest challenges in Africa, especially for the youth and young adult population. In order to enhance productivity, stimulate competitiveness and bring about economic development, the private sector must take the lead in offering a path for training and job development. Indigenous companies and Job creation remedies must be accomplished through the collaborative efforts of both the public and private sectors. In particular, the government must partner with the private sector to train Ghana’s youth in employable skills so that they can gain employment. The Government must also promote entrepreneur training to create jobs and growth for the economy. The Youth Summit brought business leaders and policy makers together and provided perspectives on how the private sector can address chronic youth unemployment on the African continent.
IHAN’s trip to Ghana was both enlightening and rewarding. By collaborating with OIC International of Ghana, IHAN became part of a life changing organization that provides much needed assistance and education to disadvantaged, unskilled, and unemployed Ghanaian youth. Not only are vocational skills, counseling, job-placement, and follow-up services provided to the youth involved with OIC International, but together we worked with the Ghanaian private sector and the government to ensure job development for the Ghanaian youth. IHAN is truly making a positive difference world-wide.
Field Project – Hargesia Somaliland
December 1-10, 2003
In November 2002, IHAN participated in a fact-finding mission to Somaliland. IHAN determined that the Hargeisa Group Hospital, the only public hospital, was in dire need of renovation. The hospital’s infrastructure, medical supplies, and equipment needed to be dramatically improved in order to meet the basic health care requirements of the community.
The needs of the Hargeisa community were great especially because the majority of women suffer from the consequences of female genital mutilation (FGM). There are many cases of pelvic inflammatory diseases, vesico vaginal and rectal fistulas that should be addressed. As a result, IHAN adopted the Hargeisa Group Hospital and its constituents to ensure that their needs are met on an on-going basis.
IHAN aimed to provide a mass immunization for 30,000 children of the Hargeisa community. IHAN also launched a public health training program for local health providers. IHAN’s project team included U.S. trained doctors, nurses and support personnel. This team partnered with Somaliland’s Ministry of Health and the local healthcare providers through the Hargeisa Group Hospital.
IHAN’s Vaccination Programs:
Eradication of common preventable childhood diseases and maternal neonatal tetanus;
Examination for infectious diseases, joint and bone diseases, gastrointestinal parasites and skin lesions;
Education of families and communities about public health issues such as hygiene, waste disposal, clean water and reproductive health;
Expanding the public health network by renovating health facilities and supplying health care providers with the necessary
IHAN project in: Chitravadi Village, Kancheepuram District, Tamil Nadu, India In collaboration with Dr. G. Perumal, December 8-13, 2007
The International Health Awareness Network is a 503C voluntary organization dedicated to improving the health of women and children, especially in developing countries. As a small organization, we work with partners who have dedicated themselves to compatible goals. IHAN will support health education projects, with local collaboration, that are targeted to meet the needs and respond to deserving local issues.
At its recent meeting, the IHAN board decided to support the work of the SVP Trust for Rural Reconstruction in Kancheepuram District, Tamil Nadu India. The Trust was established by Dr. G. Perumal, a retired agricultural extension professor from Madras Agricultural University to work for the benefit of people living in the rural area of his home district. It works in collaboration with the people of this area to improve their lives and living conditions. The project is described below.
We invite you to participate in this undertaking by sending your tax-deductible contribution, ear marked for this project, to:
The International Health Awareness Network (www.ihan.org),
160 West 66th Street, Suite 57 B, New York, NY 10023.
We appreciate your joining with us in this important venture.
PEACE PROJECT OF HWACHEON COUNTY, SOUTH KOREA
Dr. Roshan, the president of IHAN, was invited to participate in the planning committee for the Bell Park of World Peace Project, which was sponsored by Hwacheon County, October 12-15 , 2006 in Seoul, Korea.
The Bell of Peace for Life will be cast out of shells that were actually used in warfare. Empty bullets shells from countries with history of military conflicts will be melted to create 9,999 Kwan and the last Kwan of the Bell will be added finally in Korea, where the last divided nation in the world remains to be reunited. (Kwan is a Korean unit of weight: 1 Kwan=3.75kg)
As we cast the Bell of Peace for Life and construct the park of bells, our paradox will be turned into the strong resolve to construct a global order of peace for life. We hope that all living beings will participate in this project, cherishing in their hearts the reverberations of the Bell of Peace for Life.
For more information, please visit: www.gopeacebell.com.