After becoming a mom, the importance of ensuring I am creating a better world for the future has become more of a priority. One of the things I love about working for IKEA, is knowing that our mission is to “Create a Better Everyday Life for the Many.” It makes me proud to know that everything I do, and every decision I make is somehow connected back to making a better everyday life.
In November of 2019, I travelled to Eswatini Africa to witness the work of Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) supported through the IKEA Foundation. Eswatini has the highest incidence of HIV in the world. Tuberculosis is also at crisis levels. MSF is providing HIV and TB treatment, health education, and infrastructure for the community.
The people working for MSF are incredible individuals. Nombulelo provides health education to teach the community about HIV self-testing, HIV risks and prevention. Although these types of discussion were considered taboo in the past, through the work of MSF, communities are now able to protect themselves and make good choices.
The project has also set up community health clinics in urban centers that are easy to access and where people are already going – like shopping areas. Many patients must walk 2-3 hours each way to receive medical help, so these community clinics make health care much more accessible for most of the population.
At the end of our trip we asked the MSF staff and local hosts how we can help. The only ask was to share their stories and share our experience in Eswatini. I am committed to share my experience and what I have seen. And I am committed to change the world with my actions.