GTM was established in 1996 in collaboration with the Västerbotten Association for the Neurologically Disabled (VAND) of Northern Sweden, the Swedish Organization of the Handicapped International Aid Foundation (SHIA), and the Ministry of Health of the Government of Ethiopia. A nationally recognized and respected organization, GTM provides medical care to thousands with no government funding.
GTM provides rehabilitation and medical healthcare services to people with epilepsy, post-polio paralysis, hearing impairment, and visual impairment. Its comprehensive eye care service includes the control of trachoma. As part of the effort to prevent and control trachoma, GTM is involved in the provision of safe, clean, and adequate water supplies as well as environmental sanitation, following the World Health Organization’s recommended SAFE strategy (S = surgery, A = antibiotics, F = face washing, E = environmental sanitation). Services for the communities also include health education and vocational skills training for the hard of hearing and people with visual and physical impairments.
Rainbow for the Future has collaborated with GTM since 2005. Projects include constructing an X-ray facility, providing funds for purchasing and installing an X-ray machine, and renovating and rehabilitating a Grarbet medical ward to meet standards so it could be upgraded from clinic to hospital status. Another project is supplying potable water through 20 hand-dug wells.
GTM is addressing the water and sanitation problems of disadvantaged rural communities residing in the Rift Valley Region.
In 2008, we provided funds to renovate a space in the Butajera clinic to accommodate an X-ray machine. The follow-up project in 2010 was the Grarbet Hospital Upgrade and X-ray Machine Installation. This project was partially funded by an Alberta Government Community Initiatives International Development Fund grant. The purpose of the funding was for the purchase and installation of an X-ray machine. GTM also renovated a patient ward to accommodate patients who can afford to pay for medical interventions and therefore subsidize those who cannot. This upgrade allowed the Butajera clinic to achieve the status of hospital and so made securing materials and equipment easier.
Water is essential to good health. Dr. Redda Tekle Haimanot has been caring for the health and wellbeing of thousands who pass through his clinics in Butajera and Ziway. High fluoride level in groundwater is a particular problem in the Rift Valley Region, the target area of the projects. Approximately 7.5 million Ethiopians in the Rift Valley area suffer from problems related to high fluoride levels. Nearly 80% of children are affected by dental fluorosis. Moreover, many suffer from debilitating skeletal problems later in life. (UNICEF, 2007)
Recognizing these facts, GTM is addressing the water and sanitation problems of disadvantaged rural communities residing in the Rift Valley Region, by mobilizing funds from donors and individuals. GTM works towards minimizing and preventing blinding diseases. Through the provision of comprehensive eye care as well as adequate water supply, it strives to prevent the transmission of eye diseases including trachoma. Grarbet Tehadiso Mahber is digging wells throughout the region so all may have access to water and improved health. By 2013 there were 7 hand-dug wells providing clean water to communities. As well, funds were used to buy the hand pumps for the wells to be developed going forward. By 2015 there were 3 more wells developed, serving more than 1,000 more people.