You’ll often find Virginie, one of Village Health Works’ exceptionally dedicated volunteers, in the demonstration gardens.
Or you might find her in the garden shed she’s been using to grow mushrooms. In the evening, it’s a bit harder to pin her down - she’s often running all over campus, from the gardens to the kitchens. One of her many areas of expertise is allocating different nutritious foods to each of the patients’ families, paying careful mind to the nutritional needs of each individual patient. She orchestrates this careful allocation each and every night, just before dinner. She’ll stay at the kitchen for hours if she finds that any of the patient’s families are unfamiliar with the foods she distributes from the Village Health Works gardens, and then will proceed to demonstrate the most nutritious ways to prepare them. Virginie works with the clinical team, the food security team, the agronomist and many others across the Village Health Works campus to ensure that each patient eats several full, nutritious meals per day.
Since the very beginning of Village Health Works, 10 years ago, Virginie has been one of our greatest supporters. She first came to be a part of our community when our co-founders, Deo and Dziwe, were providing clinical services from a tent they had set up on the hill that would soon become home to the VHW campus. One of her children was sick, and thankfully the child was able to receive a simple treatment and recover quickly. Virginie would become the first person to give birth on the Village Health Works campus, in the grass underneath the tree that many call the “hope tree.” She has worked tirelessly every day since then to ensure that all who come to VHW in need are well cared for, embodying the compassion, dignity and sense of community on which Village Health Works was built and on which continues to grow.
Virginie, VHW Food Security Volunteer & Leader