Supporting Students in Healthcare – The Mafunzo Project – Year 13

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$25,000 $25,000
Project Code: COD-PAN-SSH-P13


The Democratic Republic of the Congo is a really difficult country to live in. Life expectancy is low and trained health professionals are rare, particularly outside the capital city. Training general practitioners (7 years) and nursing staff (4 years) in one of the worst-affected areas will bring about long-term benefits to this African nation. The project co- funds medical/nursing students in their second year of study onwards, once students have proven their commitment and reliability. Funding covers 80% of the cost of a year’s tuition, leaving students to also contribute to the cost of their education. 

Why support this:

DRC needs more locally trained healthcare workers to rebuild the nation and serve its people. We like that students are only chosen after their first year, and that they continue to contribute to the cost of their education as it demonstrates their commitment (20%). We are excited to see results, as some of our earlier trained doctors and nurses are now working in DRC, making a difference in the lives of traumatised women in particular. More than twenty doctors and 26 nurses have graduated from the program. 


$25,000 for one year. $330 provides training for a nurse for one year and $1,280 will train a doctor for a year. It takes four years to train a Nurse and seven years to train a Doctor. The modest budget for this project will provide 80% of the training costs for 12 nurses and 16 doctors for one academic year. 

The Need:

This is a nation fraught with political instability, riots and senseless violence. Rape and sexual abuse has been a tool of war, and there are many traumatised communities trying to rebuild their lives. The training hospital specialises in the treatment of traumatised women. DRC has 0.11 physician per 1,000 people (compared to Australia’s 0.25) and 0.5 nurses per 1,000 people (compared to Australia’s 10). The need is huge. The country still suffers political instability and all suffer as a consequence. 

Expected Life Change:

  • Committed and competent medical staff will be released to attend to people’s healthcare needs, with subsequent improvement in the health of the entire community
  • The traumas of war can begin to be healed, leading to restoration at a personal and community level
  • Students will be trained in a vocation that will provide income and skills to look after their own people


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