This NGO is providing health facilities to 1.8 million patients and the number is only growing. Here's how
In a developing country like Pakistan, a community with high quality healthcare, sound education system and infrastructure, safe drinking water and proper sanitation facilities seems like a far-fetched dream.
A few visionary individuals joined hands in 1979 to turn this dream into a reality for the most vulnerable population of Pakistan.
Health And Nutrition Development Society (HANDS) believes there is a lot of untapped potential in the country which can be unraveled through the provision of basic amenities.
Founded by Professor A. G. Billoo (recipient of Sitara-e-Imtiaz, the third highest honour and civilian award in the country), with some of his students in 1979 in a remote village of Dur Muhammad located in the outskirts of Karachi, HANDS has served for 41 years as one of the largest non-profit organisations of the country, with an integrated development model and disaster management expertise.
With a network of 35 offices across the country, it has access to more than 30 million population of 21,000 settlements in 59 districts of Pakistan.
HANDS is striving for a 'healthy, educated, prosperous and equitable society'.
To work towards this goal, the organisation is providing health facilities to 1.8 million patients, shelters to 20,000 homeless families, 8,000 water and sanitation schemes, education to 150,000 students and self-employment opportunities to 20,000 people every year, and these numbers are only growing.
What has HANDS been doing in the past?
During the last 25 years, the organisation has run 768 projects with an average of 60 projects per year, directly benefitting more than 39 million persons with basic amenities like health, education, livelihood, sanitation and more.
HANDS believes in the development of communities with strong local participation, and has gained thousands of community-based volunteers, with more than 7000 community-based organisations stepping forward to help.
With strong support from development partners and philanthropists, like US Aid, UK Aid, OXFAM, provincial and federal government, HANDS has been able to expand services to 59 districts across the county.
Currently, the organisation is working on various public-private partnerships in the health sector in collaboration with Sindh government in Pakistan, operating over 34 health facilities in Malir District of Karachi.
In 2018-2019 session alone, around 3.26 million people benefited from their health initiatives.
What's in the pipeline?
For the future, HANDS is working on developing 25,000 model villages and settlements which will have all the basic amenities for a resourceful society.
With plans on achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) well before 2030, HANDS has set benchmarks based on the current status of local national health, education and poverty indicators (as stated in nationwide surveys).
Cross-cutting segments in the organisation's portfolio includes development, environment, climate change, urbanisation and information technology complete with knowledge solutions.
The strategy also covers actions to increase HANDS's capacity, efficiency and effectiveness in areas through technology development and knowledge management using Sustainable Development Models and institutional arrangements.
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