Providing Children's Healthcare in Somaliland During COVID-19

Raised toward our $50,000 Goal
147 Donors
days left
Project ends on June 30, at 11:59 PM CDT
Project Owners

Loving Our Global Neighbors: The Friendly Neighbor Epidemiologist

The Need

In Somaliland, the 4th poorest country in the world with a population of 4 million, there are over 250,000 children in need of surgical care and most of these children go untreated. Compounding on all of these factors is the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic is estimated to double the number at risk of starvation (120 to 256 million), push an additional 42-66 million children into extreme poverty and increase wasting by 50%, with the poorest countries impacted the most. 

Families around the globe are having to make choices between food and healthcare because of poverty, impacting a child’s health.  

What if we could do something about that?

That's where you come in to help. Our goal is to meet the acute COVID-19 needs for Somaliland families and the ongoing need of children in need of surgery in the country. How do we meet that goal? We meet the need - together - equitably and sustainably with our in-country partners through the provision of PPE, testing kits, ventilators, and surgical procedures for children.

About Dr. Emily Smith

Emily Smith, PhD, is an Assistant Professor of Epidemiology in the Department of Public Health at the Robbins College of Health and Human Sciences at Baylor University. Her research interests include pediatric global surgery, health economics, and poverty in low-income countries. Currently, her research takes place in Uganda, Nigeria, Ghana, Somaliland, and Latin America. Dr. Smith received her Ph.D. in epidemiology from the Gillings School of Public Health at UNC-CH and an MSPH from the University of South Carolina. 

About Dr. Edna Adan and the Edna Adan University Hospital, Somaliland

Edna Adan was born in Hargeisa, the daughter of a prominent Somali medical doctor, and was trained as a nurse in the 1950s in the United Kingdom at the Borough Polytechnic, now London South Bank University. In 1980 Edna Adan started building a hospital in Mogadishu, Somalia. However, due to the beginning of the Somali Civil war, she was forced to leave the country before it was completed. She was the World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Nursing Advisor during 1986. From 1987 to 1991, she was the Regional Technical Officer for Mother and Child Health. She founded and directs the Edna Adan University Hospital with a goal of training 1,000 midwives in her country.

A personal note from Dr. Smith

Thanks for stopping by! I’m a wife, mom, and global health epidemiologist here at Baylor. If you sit by me on an airplane, I will likely show you all 639 pictures of my family I took in the last month - and brag on the incredible students I get to teach. I love coffee, books, nature, hammocking, and joy. I also love the work I get to do and appreciate your partnership.

Choose a giving level


General donation

Your donation will go towards the general needs of the project.


Food, lodging, transportation

The biggest barriers for families needing surgery for their child is poverty, namely not having enough money for food and transportation while in the hospital. Your $50 will provide food, lodging, and transportation for these families.


Adult and child pulse oximeter

Your donation of $75 will purchase pulse oximeters needed for COVID-19 care and surgical care for children.


PPE, gloves, COVID-19 tests

Your gift of $100 provides COVID-19 testing kits, N95 respirators, masks, and other PPE to the front-line healthcare works at the Edna Adan University Hospital.


Children's surgery

$200 will provide life-saving surgery for children in need in Somaliland.


New outpatient/maternity ward

Your donation will go toward a new outpatient area of the hospital to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 to others in the hospital. To date, a new COVID-19 isolation clinic has been constructed outside of the hospital from generous philanthropic donations. This new clinic will be the site for all COVID-19 testing and treatment of infected individuals with minor symptoms. Those with major symptoms, however, will need to be inpatient and housed within the existing hospital medical wards. These medical wards are directly linked to the current maternity wards where women stay during labor and delivery, placing these mothers and their children at great risk of contracting COVID-19 during the delivery and post-delivery stays. These funds will be used for the purchase of renovation and development supplies (e.g., cement, windows, toilets, wash basins/sinks, new beds) and labor costs. Full costs of the new outpatient/maternity ward is $33,000.



Your donation of at least $5,000 will go toward purchasing additional ventilators for the Edna Adan University Hospital.

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