Abbie Trayler-Smith

Muzenge, Bururi, Burundi

Candice Bazirubuza (54) is one of thousands of 'distributors' of medications that combat Neglected Tropical Diseases. She says: ^We are all distributors because we have all taken the medicine and we are now recovered. First I was sick, and when they cured me I wanted to help others. I am very thankful. I am happy that somebody cares about me. When I was ill I couldnt do any of my daily activities such as work in the fields or look after my eight children. I saw how the distributors cared about me and how they saved a lot of people, maybe more than 1000. Now I'm strong enough to work I want to help others.^ In every village of Bururi, Rutana, Cibitoke and Bubanza Provinces a small team of local volunteers make up a distribution team for the Drug Administration Campaign for Neglected Tropical Diseases. They check off members of the population, measure them to decide what drugs to give and the dose, administer them and keep a tally of numbers in order to help the health authorities reach all parts of the rural population. Four provinces in Burundi are severly affected by Neglected Tropical Diseases such as Onchocerchiasis (River Blindness), Schistosomiasis (bilharzia) and STH's (Soil Transmitted Helminths). Each year thousands of local volunteers give up their work for up to 2 weeks to distribute of medicines in their villages for The Distribution Campaign for Neglected Tropical Diseases run by the Ministry of Health. Onchocerchiasis is the world's second-leading infectious cause of blindness and causes serious itching and inflammation of the skin. It is spread by flies that breed by water. Schistomiasis is a form of worms, a chronic ill

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Abbie Trayler-Smith
Muzenge, Bururi
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