It’s hard to believe that, this coming April, The Denan Project will have completed twenty years of service helping some of the poorest communities on our planet. From our simple beginning in a two-room abandoned building in Denan, Ethiopia, we have grown into an organization that is currently providing free, quality medical care to roughly 50,000 desperately impoverished people each year in three remote locations; the harsh desert of Ethiopia, the high Andes of Peru, and the steppes of Mongolia. Thousands more are the beneficiaries of our programs in education, water, agriculture, and micro-loans/economic development.
Today, the village of Denan where we first started has grown from about 20,000 people into a good-sized city with a population of well over 100,000. Due to your incredible support, our tiny health post has increased from a paid staff of one to a fully functioning 44-room hospital with a staff of more than 40 highly qualified professionals. The refugee camp, which once held nearly a third of the town’s population, no longer exists and Denan now has hotels, taxis, electricity, and a thriving local market. A paved road now links Denan to the rest of the Somali Regional State.
The Denan Project’s mission has always been to help communities become self-sufficient. With that in mind, our Board of Directors has decided the time has come to end our support for the Denan community as of September 2024. Happily, our longtime partner in Ethiopia, The Organization for Welfare and Development in Action (OWDA) has agreed to take over our operations in Ethiopia at that time. OWDA has substantially grown in financial capability and in size and scope over the last two decades and will be able to continue supporting Denan’s programs and community outreach. The Denan Project will continue to fully support our programs in Denan until September.
While we are closing our relationship with Ethiopia, our critical and life-changing work will be ongoing in the remote, impoverished, and under-served areas within Peru and Mongolia. In these communities, we will continue to fund dental clinics, hospitals, and health posts, as well as provide access to education, and the promotion of economic development. These make a real difference in the lives of people who, without our help, would have scant or little access to these life-changing services. With your help, we will continue to run and expand these critical development projects, and hope we can continue to count on your support.
As always from our very start, The Denan Project continues to be run completely by dedicated volunteers. All Board members and supporters pay their own expenses when visiting our projects. All incidental costs such as printing and accounting expenses are covered by our Board of Directors. This guarantees that every penny donated goes to our beneficiaries. There are very few NGOs that can make this claim.
For the past almost 20 years we have improved the lives of tens of thousands of desperately poor people and helped to make their future a little brighter. I am incredibly grateful for your past support and we humbly ask that you consider The Denan Project in your 2023 charitable giving plans.
Thank you again for your continued thoughtfulness and generosity.
On Behalf of All Our Volunteers, With Deepest Gratitude,
- On average, we treated 2,600 patients per month in our hospital, which now has 44 rooms and a highly-trained local staff of more than 40. As always, all services continue to be provided free of charge. To date we have provided free, quality medical care to more than half a million people in this all-but-forgotten Ethiopian region.
- In addition to medical care, we continue to support programs in agriculture, water, education, micro-loans, economic development, and supplemental feeding.
- The hospital programs related to anti-female genital mutilation, anti-malaria, anti-polio, pre- and post-natal care, and in- and out-patient TB and vaccination all remained ongoing, in addition to a variety of health education programs.
- We repaired and refurbished our water tanker, allowing us to provide critical emergency water to the people of Denan during the drought, in addition to our hospital.
- We continued to provide ambulance service to those in remote locations, as well as patients needing specialized care at advanced medical centers.
- Our micro-loans continue to boast a perfect repayment rate and remain an important source of economic development for the community.
- While there is still unrest in parts of Ethiopia, we are grateful that it has not reached our region and operations.
- Our health center treated approximately 3,000 people during the year.
- We completed the construction of a much-needed new roof for our health center. All labor was provided free of charge by the community.
- We continued to support economic development in the area, establishing micro-loans in two villages for the raising of cuyes (guinea pigs) and for the growing of quinoa and tarwi (a local legume)
- We continue to support education programs in the local preschool, primary school, and high school.
Tariat, Erdenemandal of Arkhangai Province and Chandmani of the Gobi Altai Province Mongolia:
- The three hospitals we support serve remote areas with a combined population of 41,000 people.
- We finished furnishing the operating rooms and dental facilities in the Erdenemandal and Tariat hospitals and provided a portable x-ray machine and an autoclave.
- We opened a dental facility in Chandmani in the Gobi Altai, the poorest province in Mongolia, bringing dental care to these distant communities for the first time.
- We continue to provide fuel for doctors traveling by motorcycle from far-flung hospital outposts, enabling them to furnish medical care to remote herder encampments and bring critical outreach for the dispersed and isolated population of the region.