A message from CEO of Merck Foundation, Senator Rasha Kelej, on the partnership with The New First Lady of Malawi to build healthcare capacity and strengthen COVID 19 response in Malawi and Africa at large


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We are very happy to partner with The New First Lady of Malawi H.E. Mrs. MONICA CHAKWERA and underscore our long-term commitment to build healthcare capacity, empower girls in education and break the stigma of infertility in Malawi. We are also very proud to appoint The First Lady of Malawi as the Ambassador of “Merck More Than a Mother” and welcome her as a new member of Merck Foundation First Ladies Initiative-MFFLI.

We are going to work very closely with The First Lady of Malawi and the Government of Malawi to make history together by providing training for the First Specialists in many fields such as; Fertility, Sexual and Reproductive Medicines, Oncology, Diabetes, Endocrinology, and Respiratory and Acute Medicines with the aim to improve access to quality and equitable health care in the country. Merck Foundation will enroll the Malawian doctors, selected by the First Lady office and Ministry of Health, to their various training programs for the next 10 years.

Merck Foundation will continue their important program “Educating Linda” together with Malawi First Lady to sponsor the education of 20 best performing girls in their secondary schools till they graduate.

Moreover, Merck Foundation celebrated three winners from Malawi for their “Stay at Home” Media Recognition Awards from Southern African Countries to raise awareness about COVID 19 in the country.

I am thankful to H.E. Mrs. MONICA CHAKWERA, The First Lady of Malawi for attending Video Conference Summit of Merck Foundation First Ladies Initiative (MFFLI) along with 13 African First Ladies to discuss joint efforts to build healthcare capacity and strengthen the response to COVID-19 in the country and Africa at large.

I am looking forward to working with The First Lady of Malawi, H.E. Mrs. MONICA CHAKWERA to further advance healthcare capacity and promise to improve access to quality and equitable health care and create a strong medical army in Malawi.

Kind regards,

Dr. Rasha Kelej
CEO of Merck Foundation
President of Merck More Than A Mother
One of the 100 Most Influential Africans (2019, 2020)




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