UPDATE—Read the 2/10/22 story and see a video: “Everything old is new again: Old medical supplies find new life in Africa”
As the faculty advisor for the JMU supply chain club (the Student Chapter of the Association for Supply Chain Management), in August, 2019, Dr. William J. Ritchie formed a partnership between the club and a local nonprofit, Mihret Medical Supply, Inc. The goal was to gather donated medical supplies, store, and ship the supplies to Africa. To provide an incubator for the growth of the project, the Interchange Group, Inc. donated 2500 sq. ft. of warehouse space and logistics for the calendar year 2020. The project resulted in the shipment of two 40' containers filled with hospital equipment to Ethiopia and Congo in Fall 2020.
While some COVID-19 impacts have been experienced due to understaffed vehicle and shipping companies, the first container for 2021 should be shipped in late September or early October to Bahir Dar University in Ethiopia, for use in the Fifas Mewucha Hospital. “Once completed,” says Dr. Ritchie, “I believe that this shipment will help to forge a lasting relationship between JMU and Bahir Dar University.”
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