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Kenya Vaccination 1987–89

Upon gaining admission to the Public Health Program at New York University, Dr. Roshan proposed a project centered on childhood vaccination and health awareness in the villages of Nairobi, Kenya. Collaborating with Nairobi University, a joint educational endeavor was orchestrated, drawing the participation of 15 dedicated students.
However, despite the unwavering support of colleagues and the backing of organizations such as the National Council of Women of the USA, represented by luminaries like Lady Dorothea Hoppfer, acquiring the necessary vaccines proved an insurmountable challenge. “Following a chance encounter with Lady Hoppfer, I was astounded by the swift and decisive action that ensued.” Dr. Roshan recounts.
In a testament to the power of collaboration and determination, within hours, inquiries from the Mission of Kenya in New York and UNICEF materialized, offering not just the requisite vaccines, but also logistical support, free of charge. After successfully securing the vaccine for 10 thousand children, we eagerly prepared for the exciting adventure ahead.
Our program, a fusion of the University of Kenya and American sessions. Joined by local doctors and a notable female politician, herself a trained nurse, we embarked on a mission of immunization across five villages, aided by a UNICEF vehicle equipped with proper refrigeration. Inhabitants of the sixth village asked the politician for the American team to come to their village too. The village had no road to allow the UNICEF vehicle and the truck of the Nairobi Television to enter the village. The villagers offered to make a road as we approached the center of the village.
Our clinics, held outdoors and beneath the shade of trees, provided essential medical care to thousands of women and children, addressing ailments like psoriasis with medication sourced from pharmacies in Nairobi. Experiences such as these are profoundly transformative, instilling within us a deep gratitude for life's blessings and a steadfast belief that giving back is not merely a choice but a moral obligation.

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