Duke Engineers for International Development (DEID) partnered with the Ugandan-based nonprofit Bringing Hope to the Family to construct a clinic in Kanyegaramire, Uganda. I was a project leader for the initiative and designed the clinic throughout the academic year under supervision of my Grand Challenge advisor, Dr. Schaad. I oversaw fundraising efforts for the clinic, and coordinated a team of 8 undergraduate Duke students that travelled to Uganda over the summer and worked alongside members of the community to construct the clinic. Under direction of Bringing Hope to the Family staff, the clinic will provide free maternity services to women in the area, aiming to boost maternal and child health and lower the high rates of death during childbirth in this region. I also spent time surveying for a future bridge construction project nearby.
Relation to my focus on clean water access
Gaining engineering experience in a low income country and working with local engineers and community leaders taught me a lot about implementing projects in the developing world. Uganda is a country that faces unique challenges with infrastructure and clean water access, and the opportunity to live and work there for 2 months allowed me to interact with many people in different villages and roles around the Kyenjojo district and learn about possible ways to address these challenges. I was able to conduct some preliminary research on water access during my time in Uganda, and this experience lead to the emergence of objectives for a future research project in this region that I will undertake as a Grand Challenge Scholar.
Supervisor: Dr. David Schaad
Start date: September 2016
End date: August 2017
Hours to complete: 320 (summer), 240 (academic year)