At Response-Med, we are fortunate that almost all work that we do has a tangible impact on the lives and environments of those that we engage. But every once in a while, a special project and partner come along that ignites our passion even more and the work we do becomes a simple labour of love.

The dōTERRA Healing Hands Foundation is certainly one of these partners, and the Sanaag Specialty Hospital in Somaliland is without a doubt one of those projects. I have just returned from the dōTERRA Evolve convention in Utah, USA and it was incredible to connect with our partners in person again and to have the opportunity to see how committed they are to improving the lives of their farmers, harvesters, and distillers – all of whom contribute to dōTERRA’s essential oil production.

The convention was full of fascinating people, innovative products and interesting projects. Their proactive approach to sustainable welfare has inspired me to find more ways that Response-Med can support underprivileged communities through bespoke healthcare practices in Africa.

We are aware, now more than ever, that we need to work alongside local partners as much as possible. It is only through the collaboration of public services, donors, development agencies and the private sector, that we can deliver real impact. Operating in silos with different objectives does not serve the vulnerable in the best way and certainly doesn’t allow for sustainable impact.

There is both a need and an opportunity to upskill local community members, not only in the medical space, but also to provide basic education. Women are the stalwarts of the community and empowering them through education and training will ensure the sustainability of aid initiatives while uplifting the community in general.

Sanaag Specialty Hospital team would consider ways in which to develop local staff using options such as volunteer specialists and working with partners like the Edna Adan University. The transfer of skills and experience into the local community ought to be in a structured and continuous way to retain high standards of service delivery. dōTERRA has committed to helping the Sanaag Specialty Hospital achieve its mission by providing continuing education courses and hosting several medical specialists who can provide skills transfer.

I am passionate about understanding the communities we work with. It is critical that insights and perceptions on the ground are fully incorporated into the planning of any project so that buy-in is gained from true grass roots level and carried through into the actual operations that are implemented.

dōTERRA has demonstrated their commitment to helping the staff of the Hospital further develop their careers and to ensure service provision is in alignment with international standards. We are fortunate to have a brilliant team of doctors, nurses, and support personnel to see through the Hospital’s vision. Response-Med is proud to be partnered with dōTERRA and we look forward to doing even more together as we continue to grow and develop our people, services, support and impact throughout Somaliland.