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GTN Pilot Projects in Uganda

In Lugazi, Uganda, the 140-bed Kawolo General Hospital is the only sub-district referral facility in an area with a population of 450,000, and it accepts referrals from 53 affiliated clinics and small hospitals. The staff includes 12 doctors (including interns) with only two specialists – a surgeon and a gynecologist. They are experiencing growing demand for reproductive health services and are continually working to control what had until recently been a high maternal mortality rate. 


Located on the busy Kampala-Jinja Road, they receive large numbers of accident victims, including many women and children. They are on a power grid that is very unreliable, and until this solar project was funded, they required frequent use of a fossil fuel generator.

  • This pilot project is providing reliable power and connectivity to allow telehealth support for physicians at the hospital by GTN’s international volunteers and eventually by consultants at the major medical center in Kampala.

  • It also provides infrastructure to allow the hospital’s physicians to offer consultations for health workers at two of its affiliated clinics (at Busabaga and Najjembe) and the small hospital in Nyenga.

  • In Kyangwali, Uganda, COBURWAS School provides education and housing for children and young adults in far-western Uganda near the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo. The school is located in the Kyangwali settlement with its 120,000 refugees. One nurse provides care for 816 students and 43 staff with no physician back-up. This project is solving power and connectivity issues and will allow the school nurse to access telehealth consultations by doctors at Kawolo General Hospital and by GTN’s international panel of physician volunteers.

These pilot projects to provide solar power, improved Internet connectivity and access to GTN’s telehealth services for five sites have been funded by Rotary Clubs and Districts, along with IEEE Smart Village and a Global Grant from The Rotary Foundation.

Some additional grant funding went to support a pilot project for a sixth location in Uganda, the Kiyindi Landing Site on the shore of Lake Victoria. 


Requirements for Rotary grants include completion of a detailed community needs assessment. The needs assessment for Kiyindi concluded that power, Internet and telehealth were not the greatest priority. Therefore, the funding for that site instead supported projects focused on water, sanitation & hygiene, economic development and micro-lending.


We are grateful to the following Rotary Clubs and Districts that contributed funding or other assistance that made these projects in Uganda possible:

  • Rotary eClub of Silicon Valley Smart Village (members on six continents)

  • Rotary Club of Los Altos, California, USA

  • Rotary Club of Branson-Hollister, Missouri, USA   

  • Rotary Club of Mengo, Kampala, Uganda 

  • Rotary Club of Kololo-Kampala, Uganda

  • Rotary Club of Mukono, Uganda

  • Rotary Club of Lugazi, Uganda

  • Rotary Club of Hoima, Uganda


  • Rotary District 9214, Uganda 

  • Rotary District 5170, California, USA

  • Rotary District 6080, Missouri, USA

Volunteer doctors provide an invaluable service for organizations like these. Help them save lives.

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