Tumani means hope
The Tumani Community Wellness Center opened in December of 2019. With very little assistance or hope available to them prior to the center opening, these people were in great need. 20% of the island population is HIV positive. Islanders now have a place to be tested for HIV, receive counseling, obtain ARV medicines, and receive other medical services like dental, labor & delivery and general medical treatment.
Over 15,000 people in the Tanzanian islands of Lake Victoria now have access to healthcare.
A Fisherman Finds Hope
Yaro is a fisherman by trade around the islands. He was concerned for some time about his HIV status, but did not know what to do even if he could get tested. The counselors at the Tumani Community Wellness Center helped him through the process and conducted the test.
When the results came back, Yaro tested positive for HIV. He was not ready for this news and thought his life was over. He thought all hope was lost.
The counselors spent time talking to him about the medications and how to care for himself. He began his antiretroviral treatments (ARV) and now, four months later, he is doing well following the treatments. Yaro serves as a peer counselor helping others in the islands to seek the care and counseling they need. He has hope for the future and has found purpose in helping others find the care they need, too.
A Mother's Distress
A mother came into the clinic in great distress. All she would say over and over was, “My baby! My baby!” The medical team assembled quickly. The child had a high fever and looked gravely ill. A blood test revealed that the child was suffering from severe malaria. Treatment was promptly initiated.
Thankfully, the baby responded to treatment, and within the first six hours there were already signs of improvement. The child was fully healed by the third day and was discharged home with the mother.
The mother told her relatives with joy, “If it were not for this hospital, my child would have died.”
The timing of care was everything. Without this clinic, the family would have either had to try to find passage to the mainland or more likely would have tried to continue to care for the baby at home. According to the medical staff at the clinic, that would have been fatal.