A mission trip in January 2019 by five MANU volunteers to Northern Uganda, made possible in part by
the generous support of Northwestern Medical Group in Chicago, was very successful.
Upon arrival, the group was lodged at the orphanage of Saint Claire near Aber Hospital. Soon the team was rounding with the hospital’s staff and evaluating further unmet needs at the facility. It was particularly helpful to visit and collaborate with other aid groups working at Aber. By discussing their various missions and goals, the aid groups vowed to be synergistic in their efforts to help Aber Hospital to meet immediate and long-term objectives.
MANU team members also visited an orphanage in Ngetta and were pleased to provide some funds for the children living there. It was a heartwarming experience with lots of hugs!
Father / Doctor Sam Okori, one of the founders of MANU and Superintendent of Aber Hospital, was gracious, as always, in developing the itinerary for our trip and assisting and supporting us throughout our visit. We are also grateful to the wonderful Sister Hellen Akongo, who assisted as nurse and interpreter. And hats off to our two drivers, Lemech and Paul, who transported us everywhere in SUVs.
We brought with us several suitcases and boxes containing MANU-donated medical supplies and medications. These will be used by Aber Hospital and outlying health centers. At the health centers we visited—Bala, Teboke, Minakulu, Aloi and Iceme—we were expertly assisted by Doctor Joan from Aber Hospital and several interpreters, nurses and aides. We set up day clinics at each facility, with a nurse and medical assistant to initially see patients and two doctors to evaluate and treat patients. A pharmacy, with a pharmacist and assistant, was set up to dispense medications. In addition, MANU started a pilot program at Aloi Health Center, providing year-round medications to the center’s ten poorest patients. The program is proving to better control these patients' medical issues.
Each day, our team saw 100 patients who waited several hours in 100-degree heat for us to arrive. The MANU group purchased medicines from a city pharmacy every day to supply each clinic. The patients and staff were truly overwhelmed with appreciation for our visits.
- A CT scanner for Aber Hospital.
- A lab analyzer to measure Troponin in Aber's Emergency Room / Triage Center to help rapidly evaluate if a patient has had a heart attack.
Loyola Stritch Magazine recognizes alumnus Dr. Kevin E Hunt with article about Spearheading Foundation MANU. For the past 10 years, the small but impactful organization MANU has been steadily improving the health care in the region. Click here to read Dr. Hunt's experience in Northern Uganda.
The Emergency Center at Aber Hospital in Northern Uganda was one of those dreams, that is now a reality.
The Emergency Center was inagurated on January 15, 2017. The Apostolic Nuncio to
Uganda, Most Reverend Michael Blume, gave the official blessing of the Emergency Room / Triage Center.
8 volunteers for MANU came from the US to provide services at the center.
The MANU volunteers did rounds with staff at Aber, assembled new medical equipment, provided by MANU, and spent time in the new Emergency Room / Triage Center assessing further resource needs. We held a wonderfully attended CME conference at Aber Hospital. Further, We worked with Father / Doctor Sam Okori, Medical Superintendant of Aber Hospital; Sister Hellen Akongo, Nurse; and Doctor Charles at Aber and at the health centers as part of the MANU team. In, addition, the MANU team set up clinics in Iceme and Aduku health centers providing care to hundreds. MANU brought hundreds of medical supplies and medication with us.
We are proud of the work we accomplished and appreciate all the generosity of our donors and friends. We will be planning future projects and missions soon.
"It is with great joy that we are here today for the dedication of the
Emergency Department/Triage Center at Aber hospital. And we
are honored to be here as the Papal Nuncio gives his blessing to the
We realize and understand the importance of and the great need for quality healthcare. We know that those of you that care for patients at Aber want to be equipped with the tools necessary to provide that care. We care deeply about you all and the wonderful people of Uganda. We hope you know how much we and so many others in the United States want to help support you in your efforts to give the best care possible. We are so happy to be here as you begin a new phase of healthcare at Aber with the opening of the Emergency Department and Triage Center."
"I would like to thank the Papal Nuncio Michael Blume, Bishop Franzelli, Father Doctor Okori, the volunteers here from throughout the world and the people of Uganda for participating in this dedication.of the Emergency Room at Aber Hospital.
I thank the Lord for bringing Father Sam and I together 10 yrs ago in Chicago when we traveled here & discussed a few dreams to help improve the health care in Northern Uganda.
With our foundation Medical Aid to Northern Uganda ( MANU ), donors and our team members here today on this mission, we are here to see a dream come true.
The ER was one of those dreams that is now a reality. Working with the doctors, nurses and staff at Aber this past week including spending time in this new Emergency Room, the MANU team experienced first hand the dedication and uplifting morale of the Aber staff. We are proud to be of service to you and be a part of this wonderful day."
We are excited to announce the opening of the Emergency Center in Northern Uganda during our
upcoming trip planned for January 8th through January 18th, 2017.
We have organized an excellent team, to travel to Lira in Northern Uganda this coming January, for setting up Emergency Center at Aber hospital and treat patients. The Emergency Center is in the final phase of completion as we finish furnishing and equipping it. The center was build and made possible with the funds provided by the generous contributors of our donars. We are very proud of this accomplishment and thank you all for your continuous support.
We will be meeting the reverent Dr. Samuel Okori, M.D., currently medical supervisor at Aber hospital and a founding member of Medical Aid to Northern Uganda. He will work with us on our mission, along with sister / nurse Helen Akongo.
The travelers from USA are :
- Dr. Kevin Hunt, M.D. Chicago, Illinois
- Nicole Schreiner, PharmD, Wisconsin
- Jeanine Krueger, RPh, Wisconsin
- Sue Rohan, Nurse, Wisconsin
- John Fawley, First responder, Wisconsin
- Rebecca Abisdris, Nurse, Chicago, Illinois
- Niki Gierczak, Medical Assistant, Wisconsin
- Mark Krueger, support staff, Wisconsin
- Steve Schramm, support staff, Wisconsin
- Sydney Schramm, support staff, Wisconsin
In addition to opening the Triage/ Emergency Center, we plan to treat patients, bring urgent medical supplies, buy necessary medications to treat patients, and participate in an educational seminar at Aber Hospital. We appreciate your continued interest and support and we will continue to update you about our mission trip and future activities.
The Emergency Room / Triage Center construction is steadily moving at the Aber hospital in Northern Uganda
and is almost complete. The MANU board and the team are really excited to see the beautiful tile being installed in the unit.
It is wonderful, and will allow durability and easier sanitation for the unit.
We are sending our final funding installment to pay for completion and would appreciate donations to help equip the unit and help with finishing touches and maintenance. As always we are grateful for your continued support and interest in our projects to help to improve the health of the people of Northern Uganda.
Following are some of the latest pictures from the ongoing construction of the emergency center at Aber hospital :
Click here to listen to the podcast on Christopher Closeup radio show of an interview with Dr Kevin Hunt and John Fawley.
We wish pleasant Greetings to our MANU friends, donors, and interested parties.
We will be welcomed to Northern Uganda by the wonderful Ugandan people. Our manugiving team will consist of 8 volunteers from the USA.
The team includes:
- Kevin Hunt, Physician
- Sue Rohan, Nurse
- Rebecca Abisdris, Nurse
- John Fawley, First Responder/Triage
- Nicole Schreiner, Pharmacist
- Jeanine Krueger, Pharmacist
- Mark Krueger, Pharmacy Technician
- Niki Gierczak, Medical Assistant
- Father / Doctor Samuel Okori, Priest / Physician
- Sister / Nurse Hellen Akongo from Lira, Uganda
We are planning on bring several suitcases of medical supplies and medication.
We will also purchase additional medication as needed in Uganda.
We will be visiting several outlying village clinics, setting up day clinics
to get several hundred villagers into the medical system.
Several of us are speaking at a Medical Education Conference at Aber Hospital.
We will have a foundation stone ceremony for the start of the much-needed Triage Center Building addition, which will be built onto Aber Hospital in the next several months, thanks to the MANU donations.
We will provide updates on the ceremony, a trip summary, and pictures highlighting our trip and progress. As always, we appreciate you interest and wonderful donations.
Thank you for all your support over the last seven years. We have accomplished a lot in helping
the people of Northern Uganda achieve and realize better health. The MANU board and volunteers are working
hard to accomplish our goals and objectives.
We are planning to build a Triage-Emergency room addition on to Aber hospital in Lira district. This addition is badly needed as patients have no specific area in which to be triaged when they come for acute care. This new facility would allow an efficient central area to see patients and establish prompt acute care. After intake and treatment initiation, the patients would be transfered to a hospital bed for future care. This triage center would have areas for medical and surgical patients. Aber hospital could service Trauma victims more rapidly and get surgical patient to the operating room more effectively.
We are excited to have the site chosen, the building plan proposal and we are waiting for the final bids to build the Triage center and begin construction in early 2016 or sooner. The Triage center will cost approximately $45,000. We are 3/4 towards this goal.
Proposed floor plan for the Triage center.
MANU's board has decided to take another 2 week mission trip to Northern Uganda in Januaray of 2016. We are planning this trip to server the needs of the people and help facilitate the building of the Triage center at Aber. We plan to meet medical staff and offer our assistance and expertise in whatevere way possible.
We appreciate your interest and contributions to this noble cause. The people of Northern Uganda continue to struggle with inadequate healthcare and the mortality rate is high. We can make an impact to help these desperate people and saves lives. We intend to be there with them in any way we can.
We wholeheartedly thank you for your interest and donations.
Dr. Kevin Hunt and pharmacist Nicole Schreiner were interviewed by Tony Rossi on the “Christopher Closeup” radio program, produced by The Christophers, a Catholic media organization. They describe the emotional impact of MANU missions: for example, how the medical team encountered a group of pregnant women, suffering from malaria and lying on a dirty floor; and how the team soon delivered mattresses, medications, and medical care. Click here for the full podcast and compelling interview.
In May 2013, a 10-day, return trip to Lira Diocese in Northern Uganda was eye-opening, exciting, and encouraging. Thanks to the team members who traveled at their own expense and volunteered their many talents to a population in tremendous need.
Our team: Reverend Samuel Okori, M.D.; Kevin E. Hunt, M.D.; nurses Hellen Akongo and Susan Rohan; pharmacist Nicole Schreiner; radiation technician and EMT David Duritza; photojournalists Don Klugman and James Daley; volunteer Carmen Lang; and pre-med student Brianna Skrzypcak. Don and James documented our trip on video, skillfully capturing the medical, political, and social situation in the impoverished region.
We carried with us several suitcases of medical supplies and a battery-operated defibrillator. Generous donations from MANU supporters enabled our team to purchase a full array of medications from the Lira pharmacy each day. Then in make-shift clinics across the diocese, we evaluated and diagnosed patients and dispensed medications to the hundreds who lined up every morning hoping to receive treatment. After our visit, a large container of additional medical supplies was shipped from the United States to Aber Hospital, run by the Catholic Diocese of Lira.
We treated cases of hypertension, diabetes, chest pain, infection, asthma, malaria, intestinal distress, HIV, post-traumatic stress from the LRA rebel war, and more. Our tireless team was dedicated to making the most of every moment.
In May 2010, Father Samuel Okori appeared with Dr. Kevin Hunt on “The Bonnie Hunt Show” in the U.S. to discuss their experience of working together in Father Okori's home country of Uganda, where they administered free medical services and provided medications to hundreds of impoverished Ugandan patients. These patients struggle daily from lack of access to even the most basic health care services.
After the television program, which included live video from the visit to Uganda, many Americans were inspired to take action. Jo Boudreau of Aurora, Illinois (USA) wrote a personal letter to Dr. Hunt, enclosing a donation and indicating her desire to learn more and possibly get involved. Jeanine Krueger, a pharmacist from Green Bay, Wisconsin (USA), emailed Dr. Hunt and Father Sam also inquiring about volunteer opportunities. Father Okori responded to both inquires and in the ensuing months began preparations for a second medical mission to Uganda.
Soon the volunteer team grew to include Nicole Schreiner, another Green Bay pharmacist. Following a laborious planning and immunization process and 24 hours in flight, the group met up with Father Okori in Northern Uganda. Everyone went to work immediately in the hopes of helping Father Okori begin to realize his dream of bringing improved medical care to his homeland.
For six days beginning at Aber Hospital on January 10, 2011, the group joined local physician Emmanuel Ocen and Cecelia Kambabazi of Isingiro-Mbarara working at scattered sites across Ngetta, Aduko, Aloi, and Minakulo. Team member Jo Boudreau was able to spend a day at the Lira Babies Home to work with orphaned children.
Overall, the team saw more than 1,200 patients and provided 3,000-plus prescriptions. Illnesses ranged from chronic hypertension, diabetes, asthma, and peptic ulcer to acute respiratory and intestinal parasitic infections. Some patients were aware of their conditions but were unable to purchase proper medications to maintain health. Others were not even fully aware of the severity of their illnesses and had dangerously high blood pressures and blood sugars.
Determined efforts began to raise awareness of issues such as HIV, family planning, basic medical care, and appropriate vaccinations. Unfortunately, without ongoing medical attention, the team recognized that some patients would suffer serious adverse consequences, such as heart attack, stroke, or premature death.
For Jo, Jeanine and Nicole the experience was life changing. They felt so welcomed. Jo remembers being deeply moved by the true kindness of the Ugandan people. She was in awe of the many villagers who went out of their way to express appreciation. Although the medical team members were pleased to do what they could, they wished they could do so much more.
Nicole was able to return to Uganda on MANU’s 2013 medical mission. Jo and Jeanine have been inspired to share their experiences with family and friends back home in the U.S. They too hope to one day return to Uganda and offer their services again. All consider it a true honor to serve the people of Uganda and especially to work with Father Doctor Okori, as he strives to provide a better standard of health care to his beloved people.
Medical Aid to Northern Uganda was originally formed following a first, two-week mission to Northern Uganda in 2007 by Dr. Kevin Hunt and Fr. Samuel Okori. This fact-finding trip revealed the tremendous need for basic health care and education in local villages, where people were suffering from 20 years of rebel warfare and isolation. Poverty and disease were rampant. Fr. Okori and Dr. Hunt committed to joining forces in gaining international support for improving conditions in Fr. Okori’s home country.