Cape Town – A project designed to end cervical cancer in Africa is among 100 proposals in the running to receive a $100 million (R1.5 billion) grant from the MacArthur Foundation.
Mothers2mothers (m2m), made up of three affiliated non-profit organisations and headquartered in Cape Town, has proposed improving their services to include HPV prevention education and vaccination, and early identification of cervical cancer.
They said that as part of their project they would partner with Village Reach, an NGO that has increased access to health care
for over 35 million people in
sub-Saharan Africa, working
with governments to ensure that vaccines, medicines and other health supplies reach underserved communities.
If successful, m2m will initially focus on reaching over 10 million adolescent girls and boys in Kenya, Lesotho, South Africa, Uganda, and Zambia - five countries where m2m operates that have some of the highest rates of cervical cancer in the world.
Organisation chief executive Frank Beadle de Palomo said cervical cancer was the leading cancer among women living with HIV.
Their model was based on peer-approach, providing care and support to stay on course.
That they had made it to the top 100 was an achievement in itself, Beadle de Palomo said.
“We are competing against competitors from around the world, including against universities with lots of funds.
“What we are doing makes
sense, and its successes can be traced.”
Beadle de Palomo said that if m2m were to win, the resources would benefit millions of those living on the continent as it would not be taken elsewhere.
MacArthur last week announced the Top 100 in its 100&Change competition for a single $100m grant to help solve one of the world’s most critical social challenges.
The foundation said each proposal was evaluated using four criteria: impactful, evidence-based, feasible and durable.
“MacArthur seeks to generate increased recognition, exposure,
and support for the high-impact ideas designated as the Top 100,” said Cecilia Conrad, chief
executive of Lever for Change and MacArthur managing director, 100&Change.
“Based on our experience in the first round of 100&Change, we know the competition will produce multiple compelling and fundable ideas.
“We are committed to matching philanthropists with powerful solutions and problem solvers to accelerate social change.”