Frederick O., a Vanderbilt medical student, has drummed up support from numerous global health experts, high school, college and middle school students in the US to raise funds to build and run a clinic in the rural village of Lwala, Kenya where he grew up. The clinic provides care for a village with HIV prevalence of over 25%. In its first 5 months of operation, over 5,000 patients have been seen.
Many women and children who would otherwise have to travel many kilometers away to seek healthcare can now get care in the village where Frederick has established this clinic. In 2008, the clinic will start providing antiretrovirals to the people of Lwala and its surrounding villages.
Fred himself is an AIDS orphan, having lost both of his parents to AIDS. His father, who always dreamed of having a clinic in the village, died a couple weeks before the groundbreaking ceremony of the clinic.
The story of Fred and his brothers has been widely shared. Fred's story is one of resilience in the face of AIDS and shows the power of young Africans to make a difference in the lives of fellow Africans.
All of Frederick's hard work has been completely voluntary. For years he has been going out of his way to make a difference in the lives of the people of Lwala: the children, the women and the AIDS patients. For his tireless efforts, Fred is truly an inspiration and a hero.
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