Health and Nutrition

As World Hope International works around the world to help alleviate poverty, suffering and injustice, the majority of vulnerable communities we serve face dire situations in the areas of health and nutrition. Below, please find details on some of WHI’s Health and Nutrition programs currently in action.

To learn more about WHI’s current health and nutrition efforts, read the 2016 Health and Nutrition Annual Report.

Enable the Children

Many children in Sierra Leone are born with or acquire mental or physical disabilities in their early years of life due to the scarcity and expense of child health services. Unfortunately, due to cultural beliefs and lack of education, many of these disabled children are rejected, abandoned and considered “the devil, a snake in a human body” by their communities. To help families learn to love and properly care for their disabled children, WHI’s Enable the Children (ETC) program has provided much-needed therapy and support services to over 1,000 children living with disabilities in Freetown, Sierra Leone. ETC helps families provide at-home care to children and works to provide specialized equipment, surgeries, training and other health and caregiving services to improve the lives of these disabled children.

Learn more here.

Maternal and Child Health


World Hope International Helps Babies Breathe

Sierra Leone ranks as the worst country in the world for under-5 mortality: Nearly 182 out of every 1,000 children die before their fifth birthdays. Of these deaths, nearly 30 percent occur on the first day of life, resulting in 11,200 newborn deaths each year. The leading cause of newborn death is birth asphyxia/trauma, which accounts for 31 percent of newborn deaths each year.

Delivering babies at health facilities often come with a high cost and are usually far away from the women who need them most. This had lead to a prevalence of at-home deliveries throughout the country, particularly in rural areas. During deliver, mothers are usually joined with only a Traditional Birth Attendant (TBA) to support them. TBAs generally have no formal training and are often illiterate, which means that when a moment of crisis occurs, they often don’t have the skills, training and tools to respond in a way that may save the newborn baby’s life.

To reduce the number of newborn babies that die from birth asphyxia in Sierra Leone, World Hope International, in a partnership with the American Academy of Pediatrics and Children’s Prize Foundation, is training and equipping Sierra Leonean health workers in newborn resuscitation. WHI will train 2,150 caregivers from 42 chiefdoms in five districts over the course of one year, with the ultimate goal of reducing neonatal mortality in hard-to-reach areas.

The key concept of HBB is the “Golden Minute,” which says that within the first minute of life, babies should be ventilated with a bag and mask if they are not breathing well on their own. The HBB training materials are pictorial-based and designed for even the most uneducated birth attendants, including those who are illiterate, to perform basic neonatal resuscitation. A realistic newborn simulator with a bulb suction and bag-mask ventilator allow for a hands-on approach to learning.


Support for Hospitals


Functioning, clean and safe hospitals are vital to a country’s health advancement. Since 1996, World Hope International has been involved in numerous efforts to improve hospital conditions in the countries in which we work. From providing infrastructure developments and generators to Zimba Mission Hospital in Zambia to building and financially supporting the Wesleyan nursing school in Haiti, to financing salaries and supplies and equipment at Kamakwie Wesleyan Hospital in Sierra Leone to keep staff employed, World Hope International believes in the importance of improving hospitals to improve the overall health of an entire country.

Currently, WHI’s hospital improvement work is focused around our Ebola prevention and treatment efforts in Sierra Leone. For example, WHI, in partnership with General Electric and Project HOPE, provided four Clinics in a Can(CIC) to remote regions of Northern Sierra Leone. Retrofitted with solar power and operated by Kamakwie Wesleyan Hospital and the Sierra Leone Ministry of Health, these 20-foot CIC’s operate off the grid and provide much needed healthcare access to more than 10,000 people.

In addition, WHI, with funding from UKAID, was able to transform and help re-open the Makeni Government Hospital in Sierra Leone, which was originally declared unsafe and shut down in December 2014 due to poor infrastructure and a lack of infectious disease education among staff. Please visit the Ebola section of this website to find out more about our Ebola efforts.

In 2016, WHI coordinated the delivery of medicines and supplies to 38 health centers in Sierra Leone. One of these deliveries involved two technologically advanced ultrasound machines that were donated by General Electric (GE) to Kamakwie Wesleyan Hospital and Masanaa Hospital. WHI also drilled 16 borehole wells in health centers and hospitals to provide access to clean water.

West Africa Ebola Outbreak / Post-Ebola Efforts

World Hope International was instrumental in the fight to end the 2014/2015 Ebola (EVD) outbreak in Sierra Leone. WHI has been operating in Sierra Leone since 1996, fostering an expansive network of rural communities, which helped to tackle the outbreak at a local level. As one of the largest US-based NGOs working in Sierra Leone during the outbreak, WHI partnered with the Ministry of Health, CDC, UNICEF, UKAID and others to fight the disease on many fronts – from turning trucks into ambulances, to setting up isolation units, to flying a Registered Nurse from the US to Freetown to train health workers, to helping with burials and delivering food, to providing care for shunned survivors, to creating and maintaining Community Care Centers, the team on the ground worked tirelessly to fight the disease.

In November 2015, Sierra Leone was declared Ebola-free and since then WHI has been working to provide assistance to Ebola survivors. This includes continuing to train healthcare workers on proper sanitation and infectious disease techniques to prevent another outbreak. Additionally, in partnership with the Ministry of Health and Sanitation, World Health Organization, with support from the Sierra Leone Association of Ebola Survivors Bombali, Case Management and Psychosocial Pillars from the DERC, WHI opened EVD Survivor Static and Mobile Clinics in the Bombali District of Sierra Leone, which provides acute care and ongoing management to EVD survivors.

Learn more about World Hope International’s Ebola efforts

HIV/AIDS Prevention

In Sierra Leone and Haiti, World Hope International has worked extensively with HIV/AIDS prevention. In both countries, with support from the Presidential Emergency Plan For AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), WHI created a network of partnerships with community-based organizations (CBOs). These networks of partnerships helped to effectively implement HIV/AIDS prevention programming, provide counseling and testing services through mobile and freestanding clinics, extend care to orphans and vulnerable children, and provide care and support to people living with HIV/AIDS. WHI is also working to make HIV test kits available at all health centers to test for HIV in malnourished children, as HIV infection can often be a cause of malnutrition.


Support Health and Nutrition