Education and health are inextricably linked; illness is a major barrier to academic success. If a child is sick, her concentration is impaired, which could result in her failing to perform to her fullest potential. Accounting for all the factors that affect education, Universal Promise designed the UP Health Education Initiative.

In partnership with the Addo Clinic and MDF Instruments, a Universal Promise volunteer team visited an impoverished community giving its residents full medical work-ups. The doctor, nurse practitioners, and local health workers were invited and welcomed into homes where they administered full physical exams, including the measurement of blood pressure, weight, temperature, and blood sugar. They also screened for HIV, tuberculosis, breast cancer, drug and alcohol abuse, mental health, and medication adherence. 

By insisting on this private arrangement, and not a public forum in the community center, this unprecedented model eliminated the embarrassment and shame that comes with health issues, provided residents with a better understanding of disease, shed light on the treatment they should expect to receive, and discussed how to respond when treatment falls below expectations. 

To augment the medical visits, the medical team held health education sessions at the community center on nutrition and exercise, family planning, sexual health, childcare, and hygiene. Each day the crowd was so big that we had to hold the teaching sessions outside.

Without exaggeration, this now annual initiative did save and will save lives. 

Addo Clinic Renovation

After UP's extensive communication with Addo Clinic Nurse Jenny, who responded to our request for a dream list for renovations, UP's committed donors raised enough funds to double the size of the Addo Clinic pharmacy, renovate and double the size of the waiting room, construct a shaded waiting space outside, build a waiting room for the new dental office, and more. As a result of this initiative, we will dramatically expand our impact on the Addo community from hundreds to thousands of lives.

I still have to pinch myself. I will always remember how Universal Promise made the impossible a success. Thank you to your donors, who so willingly took on this challenge. From the moment the first brick fell until the final days of construction, I went through so many emotions of gratitude. What a pleasure to see our patients enjoying the open space, shaded area, and wheelchair ramp to enter the clinic. I wish I knew stronger words than “thank you” to express our deep appreciation of Universal Promise.
— Nurse Jenny

1) site of expanded dispensary 2) laying of dispensary floor & installation of electricity 3) dispensary exterior (roll-up door followed) 
4) renovated medical storage area 5) new privacy & security window for medicine disbursement 6) demolition of former waiting room
7) mid-construction of new waiting area 8) mid-construction of check-in & enlarged waiting areas 9) new private check-in desk
10) partial view of enlarged waiting area 11) construction of unprecedented wheelchair ramp 12) finalized wheelchair ramp
13) shaded area underway 14) final view of shaded waiting space to protect patients from scorching sun 15) wider view of clinic