A Story of Hope

Dr. Deborah Martin with new friends

Dr. Deborah Martin with new friends

Dr. Gabriella Nanci and Dr. Deborah Martin first travelled together to Ghana on a short term medical mission in 2010.  They found the rural villagers put so much love and care into their sick family members, but many of their conditions would have been prevented with basic access to medicine and preventive care.  Shortly thereafter, Dr. Nanci returned to Ghana, and working with local villages, conceived a project to bring sustainable healthcare to the remote areas of this struggling country.  A U.S. non-profit was formed, and "Yonkofa," which means “friendship” in the local Twi language, was chosen as the name.  

Building plans were developed, the land for the first clinic was donated, and in the rainforest village of Yiwabra, The Yonkofa Project was bornBuilding clinics in rural villages, supported by Yonkofa and staffed by Ghanaian professionals, adds local jobs, improves trust for healthcare providers, and promotes a sustainable healthcare system.

 
Dr. Gabriella Nanci with children during a malaria screening campaign

Dr. Gabriella Nanci with children during a malaria screening campaign

YONKOFA MEANS FRIENDSHIP

When the village elders first dedicated the land to The Yonkofa Project, we felt as if we had been handed the keys to the community. The elders trusted that we were there for the reasons we said: that we would complete the project and that the villages would benefit from our healthcare.  What we realize now is that we were not given the keys to the community, we were the community’s key to a larger community, the global health community. Since “Yonkofa” means “a coming together in friendship” I think we have done exactly that. Thank you for being part of this journey.

Gabriella Nanci, MD  

President, The Yonkofa Project