Malawi first lady partners Merck foundation to build healthcare capacity

Merck Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Merck KGaA Germany, has announced its long-term partnership with the first Lady of Malawi, Monica Chakwera, during its first video conference summit of Merck Foundation First Ladies Initiative.

The summit was attended by 13 African first ladies to discuss their joint efforts to build healthcare capacity and strengthen the response to COVID-19 in the country and Africa at large.

Appreciating the programmes of the foundation, Chakwera said, “I am very happy to be appointed as Ambassador of Merck More Than a Mother. I will be fully supporting this campaign as The First Lady of Malawi, as a woman, this cause is very close to my heart. I will work in collaboration with our ministries to sensitize our communities, particularly in rural areas to better understand infertility hence to break the stigma around infertile women and to empower them through access to information, education, health, and change of mindset.

“Moreover, I am looking forward to building healthcare capacity in the country, through the programs of Merck Foundation, as it will contribute to the social and economic development of Malawi.”

Dr. Rasha Kelej, Chief Executive Officer of foundation and President, Merck More Than a Mother, stated, “We are very happy to partner with the first lady of Malawi, and underscore our long term commitment to build healthcare capacity, empower girls in education and break the stigma of infertility in Malawi. We are also very proud to appoint the first lady of Malawi as the Ambassador of Merck More Than a Mother.

“We are going to work very closely with her and the government of Malawi to make history together by providing training for the first specialists in many fields such as fertility, sexual and reproductive medicines, oncology, diabetes, endocrinology, and respiratory and acute medicines with the aim to improve access to quality and equitable health care in the country.”

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