It is with a great deal of excitement that we are proud to announce that Jason was selected yesterday as the winner of the first ever Gerson L'Chaim prize. The grant gives $500,000 to help us complete the new hospital ward, buy needed orthopedic equipment (Jason does unique developing world surgeries for multiple types of fractures, allowing people to walk immediately instead of spending weeks in traction), and expand the lab facilities at the medical school. Below is the announcement video and the official press release. We are grateful for this gift and hope to steward it well.
LONE SURGEON SERVING MILLIONS WINS INAUGURAL $500,000 GERSON L'CHAIM PRIZE
Dr. Jason Fader of Burundi: Only Full-Time Surgeon Outside Capital City, in Nation of 10 Million People
Dr. Jason Fader--a son of medical missionaries, and on a team of American physicians in Burundi, the world's hungriest nation--will bolster his work with $500,000 from the first-ever Gerson L'Chaim Prize for Outstanding Christian Medical Missionary Service.
"Because of this prize, hundreds of people will walk, thousands will receive care, and tens of thousands will be helped by the doctors we will train," Dr. Fader said.
The L'Chaim Prize, the largest ever in clinical care, is from the African Mission Healthcare Foundation (AMHF)-founded by New York entrepreneur Mark Gerson and his friend, Dr. Jon Fielder, a medical missionary serving in Kenya.
"Missionary doctors are the untold humanitarian story of our era," said Gerson, who underwrites the prize with his wife, Rabbi Erica Gerson. "Forsaking every comfort and convenience, they bring skilled, compassionate care to the continent's poor. Across Africa, Dr. Fader and his team are a link in a string of unsung heroes."
With the L'Chaim prize, Fader and his colleagues--serving with the agency SERGE--will:
■add critically needed hospital beds at rural Kibuye Hope Hospital
■create Burundi's first postgraduate medical training
■expand lower-limb fracture care in a nation that travels by foot
"It's hard to overstate the effect," Fader said. "In one of the world's poorest countries, a prize of this magnitude, in one hospital, is far reaching."
In Burundi--called the world's hungriest nation by the World Bank--only 13 surgeons serve 10 million people. Fader and his on-the-ground team, however, have trained doctors, increased surgical procedures, and upgraded and expanded medical facilities. Every team member raises his or her financial support and has learned both French and Kirundi. Since 2013, the team has served at the Kibuye Hope Hospital, the teaching hospital for Hope Africa University Medical School.
"To move forward, to provide higher volume and better quality care, and to train more national healthcare workers, we have to expand the hospital," said Fader, who intends to serve in Burundi "for many years to come."
Across Africa, medical help is the most endangered species. Since missions and agencies peaked in the last century, the docs still on the job, and their African colleagues, operate on shrinking support despite a rising tide of complex medical challenges-from AIDS to surgical problems to cancer. Fielder and Gerson, with friends and supporters, formed AMHF to bolster Africa's medical heroes and their institutions.