The Mukujju Health Center IV in Uganda takes care of a community where most mothers receive maternity services in an underserved and risky environment. This environment exposes both mother and infant to risks such as persistent sicknesses, avoidable disabilities and injuries, or even death. Patients in the health center suffering from other diseases are also exposed to high risks simply because of lack of reliable energy that could facilitate their efficient treatment. This is partly because the health center experiences hydro-power outages.
On 13 July 2019, the IEEE Uganda Section SIGHT members met in Kampala, Uganda to plan the implementation of their funded SIGHT project. The project includes setting up, installing and operationalizing a solar energy system (PV) to provide dependable and sustainable energy to facilitate the
provision of healthcare services at the Mukujju Health Center IV. The team knows that reliable energy means sufficient lighting to reduce the risk of maternal and infant deaths during childbirth. It also means a variety of other necessary equipment will be able function efficiently. And both healthcare workers and patients will be able to charge their phones to communicate during any emergency.
The facility, 300 kms away from Kampala, was chosen for the following reasons:
- The project will provide an opportunity for participants to impact an underserved and disadvantaged rural community.
- This project will enable IEEE Volunteers and the entire IEEE Uganda SIGHT to connect with rural communities, identify and appreciate the real challenges faced, and therefore design corresponding technological solutions.
- The project provides an opportunity for volunteers to develop the expertise and passion to work outside a lab or urban environment.
This project is being funded by IEEE SIGHT for a little more than $10,000 USD, with additional collaboration from the IEEE Uganda section, IEEE Uganda SIGHT, Mukujju Health Center IV Management, and the Mukujju County local government.