Amref Wins $1 million Grant from the Rockefeller Foundation to Boost COVID-19 Response

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(Photo: Kevin Gitonga/Amref Health Africa)

May 14, 2020 – The Rockefeller Foundation announced a $1 million grant to Amref Health Africa to provide essential medical equipment to health workers, to strengthen efforts to fight the spread of COVID-19. Amref Health Africa partners directly with the Kenyan Ministry of Health in the country’s official preparedness and response plans against COVID-19. The $1 million grant will allow Amref to procure 100 hospital beds, 300 infrared thermometers, 10,000 masks, 10 ventilators, 5,000 PPE kits, 20 patient monitors and 10,000 face shields.

This will supplement the work we are already doing to slow the spread of the virus including training health workers, preparing laboratories to test for COVID-19, reaching communities with education on how to protect themselves and prevent the spread of the virus in their community, and providing water and sanitation as well as sanitizer.

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The grant is a response to data showing that the average readiness in Africa to respond to the virus is at 66% and the most significant gaps are in rapid response teams, infection prevention and control, and community educational outreach. The thread posed by COVID-19 is expected to be devastating to the continent’s already over-burdened health systems.

Amref Health Africa, Group CEO Dr. Githinji Gitahi said in response to the grant, “We appreciate the grant from The Rockefeller Foundation which will play a vital role in managing the COVID-19 pandemic in Kenya. To efficiently stop the spread of the virus, we must prioritize the protection of health workers, increase public communications and community ownership to strengthen awareness and sustain behavior change.”

The grant comes after The Rockefeller Foundation announced a $50 million commitment for COVID-19-related programs worldwide.