At The Pollination Project, we think about the word “health” holistically, encompassing physical health, mental health, and inner transformative practice, as well as considering critical elements within the social determinants of what makes someone “healthy.”
Over the last ten years, The Pollination Project has funded 884 health-related projects in 66 countries. Here is a snapshot of three projects focusing on health from three different perspectives:
Nzayisenga Emmanuel, Youth Mindfulness (Rwanda)
Nzayisenga Emmanuel founded Youth Mindfulness: Rwanda to support young people who grew up in the shadow of a genocide that deeply shattered the people. From being lone survivors in their entire families and witnessing brutal murders of loved ones, to hiding in dark places for over 3 months and witnessing unspeakable violence, many Rwandans were left with wounds and psychological trauma that left them with permanent mental distress. The program received seed funding to teach children and young adults the techniques to support their personal development in the practice of mindfulness. “We believe that all young people have within themselves the capacity to be peaceful, kind, resilient and mindful, and that with the practice of mindfulness, yoga, and meditation, these strengths can awaken.”
Anna Beserra, Aqualuz (Brasil)
In Brazil, Anna Beserra received seed funding to develop Aqualuz, a device that helps solve the problem of microbiological contamination of water from arid regions, which cause diseases such as diarrhea in children. Aqualuz acts as a water purification from the familiar Brazilian cistern, however with potential for future application to other countries with a hot climate. It works by using sunlight to disinfect the rainwater and make it fit for consumption. It is a technology with many advantages, especially when compared to competitors, such as clay filter, chlorination, and water boiling, the main being, the durability and ease of maintenance. Her work has now received global recognition and is being replicated in many other countries.
Miracle Adesina, Mental Health Support Project (Nigeria)
Miracle Adesina is a healthcare professional who was troubled by the disinformation he saw spreading throughout Nigeria and surrounding countries. Part of the problem, Miracle felt, was that critical health messages were not available in many of the 70+ indigenous languages throughout Africa. Miracle received a seed grant to translate factual, empowering public health messages from the World Health Organization over social media and WhatsApp. The first person Miracle shared the translated materials with was his grandmother, who only speaks Yoruba. “I saw how this empowered her, gave her practical things she could do to protect herself, and protected her from all the misinformation spreading in her village.” Now, the infographics and translated messages that his team created have been shared with hundreds of other changemakers who are working on COVID-19 related projects.
Here is a complete map of all grants made in this area over the last decade.