Comprehensive Approach

VHW GeogreRuppa

"We were all impressed not only with the outstanding facilities but also by the tremendous community partnership and support you have generated." — Dr. George Rupp, President & CEO, International Rescue Committee

We deliver world-class, community-driven medical care and local development initiatives from what has rapidly become the premiere health facility in all of Burundi. To treat the root causes of disease and illness, we couple clinical programs with community development initiatives in response to needs defined by community members. Focus areas include food security, education, livelihood skills, gender-based violence and environmental protection. 

Clinical Programs


In the past four years we have implemented comprehensive clinical programs and served the needs of over 50,000 patients. Our well established HIV, TB, malnutrition and chronic disease programs continue to grow and achieve outstanding patient outcomes.

Our clinical programs offer a broad range of services, including primary care, child survival, women’s health, specialty clinics, counseling and inpatient treatment. The heart of our health outreach is our growing Community Health Worker program that allows us to reach a wider and wider area. In 2012 we will significantly expand our infrastructure with the construction of our state-of-the-art Women's Health Pavilion and a TB isolation ward. 

Food security programs

Food Security_3

Food is medicine. That’s why the Food Security Program was our first community development initiative. When we began, community members’ diets were often completely limited to cassava, which doesn’t only lack key nutrients – it’s also toxic when ingested in large amounts. Today, we offer agriculture education, seeds and seedlings, demonstration gardens, land for community garden cooperatives and home garden visits.

Education programs

Education is a developing area of focus in our non-clinical programs, and is also a community-defined priority. Our initial efforts include collaboration with local and national education officials, as well as an after school tutoring and activity program, teacher training, language programs in both French and English, and adult education in computer skills. 

Our work recently inspired the "Books for Kigutu" campaign to provide designated financial support and resources to our educational programs.

Economic Development

In addition to providing compassionate health care to those who need it most, our community development programs aim to address the root causes of illness, from poor nutrition to infrastructure. To that end, poverty is the single greatest determinant of health. Our Economic Development programs work to provide opportunities, skills training and support to the people of Kigutu so that they may lift themselves from poverty and thus improve their health and the health of their families.