Help us extend essential care across Tanzania

by Kupona Foundation
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Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania
Help us extend essential care across Tanzania

Happy Holidays from Kupona Foundation!

Since we launched our Year End campaign on Giving Tuesday, our supporters have raised over $7,500 to unlock access to high quality care for hundreds of people living in poverty in Tanzania. Thank you for the part you played in making this happen. If you haven’t yet made a donation to Kupona this holiday season it is not too late to give.

While you were flexing your giving muscles, I was in Tanzania, seeing the impact of your support first hand. While I was there, I met a young girl whose story really left a mark. Jane* is 15-years-old. She developed obstetric fistula when she was 14-years-old after being sexually assaulted by a man in her village. She was then forced to marry the man who attacked her. Not long after, she became pregnant. When the time came to deliver, her husband refused to take her to the hospital. Her baby boy did not survive, and she was left with an obstetric fistula: a debilitating condition that left her with chronic incontinence.

Jane is so young, and yet has experienced more trauma than anyone should have to face in a lifetime. There are clearly many complex issues at play here, but the fact that she is with us and receiving treatment, counseling and eventually family planning education from the team gives me hope that we can change the course of her future. 

Jane’s story is just one example of the hundreds of lives rebuilt at CCBRT every day. In the past 12 months, for the first time, our fistula program has served over 1,000 women, reinforcing CCBRT’s position as one of the largest fistula treatment programs in the world. Your support has enabled us to unlock access to high quality, comprehensive treatment for record numbers of women living in shame and isolation across the country.

There are still thousands of women and girls like Jane living in isolation, unable to access the restorative treatment they need. We are doing everything we can to reach them, but we need your help.

If you haven’t done so already, please consider a gift to Kupona this holiday season. It only takes one donation to shift the course of a person’s future. Your donation could be the one that changes everything.

Thank you for your continued generosity. Wishing you a wonderful holiday season, and a happy and healthy 2017.


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Amina and her mother. Photo credit: Sala Lewis
Amina and her mother. Photo credit: Sala Lewis

When Amina was born, her mother Rebecca was devastated to see that the baby girl was born missing her leg. As Amina grew, it became obvious she would need a prosthetic leg if she was going to participate in activities and go to school with her peers.

“The doctors advised me to bring Amina to CCBRT,” her mother Rebecca says. “When we arrived, I was amazed by the reception and care that we received.”

The team at the CCBRT Disability Hospital informed Rebecca that Amina would need to be fitted for a prosthetic, and they would create a custom prosthetic leg for Amina, free of charge. At first, the little girl did not feel comfortable using her new leg, so her mother brought her back to CCBRT for rehabilitation clinics. Amina is now comfortable using her limb and is learning how to move on her own. An active toddler, she is now playing with other children, and will go to school in a few years.

“We will keep coming to CCBRT for rehabilitation and new prostheses as Amina grows,” says Rebecca. “Since coming to CCBRT, I am less worried about my daughter’s future, and I have more time to cook for my family, and work at my part-time jobs. I’m speechless. I could not afford to buy a prosthetic leg on my own. All I can say is thank you.”

This is the impact you support.

It’s more than a prosthetic limb or a clinic. It’s a child’s mobility restored, a future that is made brighter with the promise of education, and healthy development. It’s a mother’s ability to return to work, providing additional income for her family. It’s an impact that ripples out from one thriving family to touch a community.

This Giving Tuesday, we hope you will empower us to reach even more lives.

We’ve made great progress with your support, but there are many more children like Amina, and mothers like Rebecca. We have more lives to change, and we cannot do it without you.

Thank you for your generosity. 

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Ismail and his mother. Photo by Sala Lewis
Ismail and his mother. Photo by Sala Lewis

“When Ismail was a baby, I suspected he had a sight problem.” ~ Mama Ismail

Her instincts were correct, and she relentlessly sought treatment for her infant son even after multiple doctors told her Ismail’s sight was fine. Finally, Ismail was diagnosed with severe pediatric cataract, a condition that impacts thousands of children in Tanzania every year. If the cataracts were left untreated, the little boy faced a lifetime of impaired sight and limited opportunities.

Mama Ismail took her son to CCBRT where a surgery successfully removed his cataracts. He returned eight years later when he was experiencing difficulties with his sight. The CCBRT doctors told Mama Ismail her son had also developed glaucoma, a serious but treatable visual impairment that builds up pressure behind the eye. Following a procedure to treat the condition, Ismail was given glasses specially made for him at CCBRT, and he is back in school.

Thanks to your generosity, and the dedication of his mother and attending medical team at CCBRT, Ismail’s story has changed from a narrative of limitations to one of possibility.

Throughout this year, your generosity and dedication changed the lives of thousands of people, giving them access to the high quality healthcare they needed and deserved. You provided life changing treatments and surgeries, allowing a boy with clubfoot to run and play; giving a girl with cataracts restored vision so she can succeed in school; repairing a cleft lip so a baby can eat and grow to her full potential. You stood with us throughout the year, touching roughly 1 million lives.

This Giving Tuesday, on November 29th, we’re asking you to stand with us once more.

You can change a child’s story today with the gift of healing.

Join us on Giving Tuesday to change a child’s story with the gift of healing. Before we ring in 2017, we can change even more lives, but not without you. Please consider making your Year End donation one week from today as we stand with people like Ismail and with our team on the ground as they bring high quality healthcare and restored hope to people and communities in Tanzania.

Thank you,

Abbey Kocan

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Meet Sharifa. Photo by Maddie Johnson
Meet Sharifa. Photo by Maddie Johnson

Meet the individuals your generosity has helped.

Every October, we mark four days of awareness. Days like World Smile Day and World Sight Day call attention to the challenges facing marginalized communities. At Kupona, we make it our mission to introduce you to the individuals within these communities who face these challenges every day, and to show you how your generosity has put them on the path to a brighter future. 

October 7th - World Smile Day: Meet Sharifa

At 11-months-old, Sharifa’s mother Lucy brought her to CCBRT for surgery to correct her cleft lip/palate. 

“My husband and I are farmers, and have two other children,” says Lucy. “It was a two-day bus ride to come here, and if CCBRT’s services were not free, we would not have been able to afford Sharifa’s procedure. When I gave birth and first saw Sharifa’s cleft lip, I knew something was wrong, but was not familiar with the condition. I was concerned because she was not feeding, and worried she might not grow. No one explained the causes to me, but at the hospital, they insisted the condition needed surgery. Two nurses told me to take the baby to CCBRT. I am hopeful this surgery will allow Sharifa to fit in with her peers, and perhaps she will soon be able to feed herself. I hope she will one day be a doctor like the doctors and nurses we have met at CCBRT.”

Thanks to your support, and the support of partners like Smile Train, Sharifa was one of 397 children who received cleft lip/palate surgery free of charge at CCBRT in 2015.

October 11th - UN International Day of the Girl Child: Meet Fatuma

When a girl has access to high quality healthcare and an education, her potential is limitless. For Fatuma, two surgeries to release her burn contracture scars will enable her to go back to school. When she was six, gasoline inside her house ignited when a candle fell into it. Fatuma cannot speak because she was born with a hearing impairment, so her mother shared her story with us.

“When the fire started, my daughter could not hear us urging her out of the burning house. She suffered extensive burns. For two months, she was treated in a government hospital, but the doctors could not release the scarring preventing her from extending her arms and fingers. They advised me to take her to CCBRT.

Fatuma underwent two rounds of surgeries at CCBRT. She is still healing from her treatment, but she can now fully extend both arms and has more mobility in her fingers.

I plan to send her to a school that can support deaf children. Because she cannot speak, it will be important for her to write so I am happy that she will be able to do this now.”

Last year, CCBRT treated 70 burn patients. 67 were children. The burns program is one of the most under-funded programs at CCBRT. Your support is critical to enable the availability of treatment for children like Fatuma.

October 13th - UN World Sight Day: Meet Goodwin

"My name is Goodwin and I am seven-years-old. I was born with cataracts on both of my eyes. When my teacher noticed I couldn’t read the blackboard in class, and my parents saw me bump into things, they knew I had a problem with my eyes. My parents brought me to CCBRT for an operation to remove my cataracts. When I woke up after my operation, my eyes were covered with bandages. I worried that I would never see again! My nurses removed the bandages, and I could finally see things clearly. I’m excited to go home, and to go back to school!”

Goodwin was one of over 7,800 people who received treatment for correctable blindness or visual impairment at CCBRT in 2015. Your support, and the support of partners like WonderWork, make this possible!


These are only four of the 1 million lives CCBRT’s work touches every year. Global numbers can be overwhelming. It can be difficult to realize the power we all have to make a change. This month, as you see the campaigns surrounding these international days of awareness, know that your support of Kupona and CCBRT is making a difference. Individuals like Sharifa, Goodwin, and Fatuma are receiving life changing treatment thanks to you. And we are grateful!

Meet Fatuma, courtesy of CCBRT
Meet Fatuma, courtesy of CCBRT
Meet Goodwin, courtesy of CCBRT
Meet Goodwin, courtesy of CCBRT
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Photo credit: Sala Lewis
Photo credit: Sala Lewis

At Kupona, we’re passionate about opportunity. In our 2015 Annual Report, available now, you’ll find stories of individual lives changed, figures that depict the scale of our collective impact, and testimonies from members of our community, encapsulating a year where we embraced opportunities to unlock potential like never before.

Your support is saving lives

In 2015, your donations, and grants from institutional partners helped to provide life changing surgical and rehabilitative care for 7,800 people with visual impairments, 397 children with cleft lip/palate, 619 new patients living with clubfoot, and 920 women suffering with obstetric fistula.

“I’m so happy CCBRT is here. Before, there was nowhere for people with disabilities to go. Now there is a place for parents and children to find treatment and comfort. I think CCBRT is the best hospital, especially as a disability hospital.”

~Monica, mother of baby Nelson, who was born with clubfoot


We’re shining a light on a silent tragedy

Since 2009, Kupona supporters have contributed over $1.3million to the treatment and prevention of obstetric fistula in Tanzania. In May, with support from our friends at Johnson & Johnson, we co-hosted our first Twitter chat on International Day to End Obstetric Fistula with CCBRTUNFPA and Fistula Foundation. We made over 3.8 million impressions as we shared our vision of a world without fistula and just some of the lessons we’ve learned from CCBRT’s high impact programs

On the same day, we launched the Drawing Out Obstetric Fistula exhibition at the New York University Kimmel Center, shining a spotlight on the experiences of women living with and recovering from obstetric fistula.

We’re excited to announce that the Drawing Out Obstetric Fistula  exhibition, originally scheduled to close on July 4th, has been extended until December 31st, 2016. We’ve been thrilled by the response to this project, and we couldn’t let it close just yet. Thanks to our friends at Johnson & Johnson, the UNFPA-led Campaign to End Fistula, Fistula Foundation, and New York University for their continued support. You can visit this powerful collection on the 6th floor of the NYU Kimmel Center on Washington Square South in NYC.

The exhibition is a beautiful reminder that there is dignity and value in every person’s story. Not only does the artist capture the transformative power of a successful surgery, but also the inherent stigma-busting power of a woman who is unafraid to tell her story as someone living with or having lived with a fistula.”

~Zack Langway, Kupona supporter

Lives and communities have been changed by your support. You are the driving force that makes this progress possible. Thank you for standing with us as we empower the people of Tanzania with access to life changing, high quality healthcare.


Kind Regards,

Abbey Kocan

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Organization Information

Kupona Foundation

Location: Saratoga Springs, NY - USA
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @KuponaFdn
Project Leader:
Susana Oguntoye
Executive Director
Washington , DC - District of Columbia United States
$25,580 raised of $30,000 goal
294 donations
$4,420 to go
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