Washington, D.C.
November 12, 2008

Thank you, ladies and gentlemen.
Thank you, Dr. Frazer and Representative Payne.
And Thank you, Julius and Africare for putting together such a memorable evening.

It’s an honor to be here tonight to celebrate what will be the legacy of President George W. Bush: his historic and unprecedented commitment to the people of Africa.

For more than twenty years, I’ve traveled to underserved areas in the developing world, often conflict nations, with World Medical Missions – not as a senator, not as an official representing the U.S. – but as a single volunteer equipped with the tools of medicine and surgery, with a goal to touch individual lives.

Africare Honors President George W. Bush

2008 Africare Award Dinner

Nov 12 2008







Press Release




CONTACT INFORMATION                                                                            FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Tina Musoke, Media Relations     

Office: (202) 328-5311

Email: [email protected]



Africare Honors President George W. Bush

 at 2008 Africare Award Dinner

Pays tribute to significant contributions to development assistance on the African continent.


Washington, DC, November 12, 2008-- Every fall, more than 2,000 international, government and corporate leaders gather in Washington, DC, for what has become the largest annual event for Africa in the United States. The Africare Bishop John T. Walker Memorial Dinner pays tribute to leaders in humanitarian fields pertaining to Africa — and supports Africare's work.


This year, President George W. Bush was the recipient of the Bishop John T. Walker Distinguished Humanitarian Service Award at the event held on November 12 at The Hilton Washington Hotel in Washington, DC. Given annually at the Africare Dinner, this award recognizes the work of an individual or individuals who have made a significant impact on alleviating human suffering in Africa. Prior recipients include President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, former Presidents Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter, then-President Nelson Mandela, former UN Ambassador Andrew Young, women’s rights advocates Dorothy I. Height and Graca Machel, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, and philanthropists Bill and Melinda Gates.


“We are pleased this year to have the President of the United States, George W. Bush, as the recipient of the Bishop John T. Walker Service Award,” Julius E. Coles, President of Africare remarked. “I cannot think of a more deserving person for this award given the tremendous increase in development  and humanitarian resources that President Bush has provided to the continent of Africa to improve the quality of life for the people of Africa.”


Since taking office in 2001, President Bush has transformed the way development assistance is carried out on the African continent by creating partnerships with African governments, businesses and civil society organizations to promote economic growth. The President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief has committed over 60 billion dollars to fight global HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. In addition, his administration has facilitated $34 billion to diminish debt, over $14 billion to invest in economies, nearly $4.5 billion to fight poverty and $10 million for clean water on the African continent.


The theme of the 2008 Bishop Walker Dinner was “Clean Water--Life’s Lifeline.” With 340 million Africans lacking access to safe drinking water and more than 497 million having no access to proper sanitation, the dinner highlighted the need for clean, safe water on the African continent and Africare's commitment to delivering safe water and improving sanitation conditions.


Among those who attended the dinner were U.S. First Lady Laura Bush; Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, Jendayi Frasier; Dr. Dorothy I. Height; the Honorable Andrew Young, the Honorable William Frist, MD; Mrs. Thurgood Marshall and actor Dave Chappelle.



Africare is a leading non-profit organization specializing in African development and aid. It is also the oldest and largest African-American led organization in that field. Since its founding in 1970, Africare has delivered more than $710 million in assistance and support — over 2,500 projects and millions of beneficiaries — to 36 countries Africa-wide. Africare has its international headquarters in Washington, DC, with field offices currently in some 25 African countries.


The Bishop Walker Dinner plays an important role in enabling Africare to both broaden awareness about its work in Africa and to raise critically needed funds to deliver life-saving services. Africare is committed to working with Health and HIV/AIDS; Food Security and Agriculture, Emergency and Humanitarian Aid; and Water and Sanitation. The 2007 Africare Bishop Walker Dinner had over 2,000 attendees and raised over $1.1 million.


The Africare Dinner is named after the late John T. Walker, the first African-American Episcopal Bishop of Washington, DC, and long-time Chairman of Africare. Bishop Walker loved Africa and the great energy and beauty of her peoples. He dedicated years of his life to his vision of what he knew Africa could become. Bishop Walker passed away on September 30, 1989.







New Hope through Healing Hands website is Live!

Go to www.hopethroughhealinghands.org

Nov 10 2008

We are very excited to announce that the new website for Hope through Healing Hands is officially live!

Go to www.hopethroughhealinghands.org website today for updates on the latest news, interesting blogs, and informative articles on global health issues to deepen your interest and engagement in issues that affect "the bottom billion." We are working hard to create change through issues like clean water, maternal health/child survival, HIV/AIDS, Malaria, and sustainable development. Join us today to learn more about what you can do to make a difference in the lives of our neighbors.

We look forward to hearing from you,

Jenny Eaton Dyer, Ph.D.



Commentary: Why it's good to have former senators in charge
By William H. Frist

NASHVILLE, Tennessee (CNN) -- Now is the time for a new beginning. And how it is approached may well turn on the often overlooked fact that both the president-elect and the vice president-elect are products of the U. S. Senate.
America shines at her best in times of challenge, and never in my adult life have we seen more challenge coming from more dimensions. I encourage Republicans to rally behind this president-elect and openly express support for the call for change throughout our legislative and executive branches.

FGHL Blog: Tommy Dollar - Letter from Sierra Leone

Princeton in Africa Fellow

Oct 14 2008

Thank you so much for e-mailing me. I have now been in Freetown for over a month, and am fully integrated into my job at Africare. Although I work in the Freetown office, I have been "upcountry" (outside of Freetown) to see our project sites twice since I arrived. As the Public Health Intern, I'm working on several projects involving HIV/AIDS education, school feeding, and hygiene and sanitation.

Education, Children's Health Linked

Tennessee Faces Infant Mortality Challenges

Oct 12 2008

October 12, 2008



Tennessee Voices

As chairman of a global drive on children's health, I devote much of my energy these days to improving the survival odds for millions of children in the developing world.

It pains me to tell you that we have a lot of work to do to improve those odds for our own children here at home. And, counterintuitive though it may seem, I believe the place to start is with our education system.

A good education can help lay the foundation for a healthy life. A new report from a national commission describes large disparities in infant mortality in Tennessee and across the nation. The report by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Commission to Build a Healthier America, of which I'm a member, finds that babies born to mothers with less education are less likely to survive their first year of life than those born to more-educated mothers.

This gap in infant mortality by mother's education is larger in Tennessee than in any other state. Infant mortality rates are highest among babies born to mothers who did not graduate from high school — 11.7 deaths per 1,000 live births. For children born to mothers with a college degree or more, the rate is 4.9, a more than twofold difference.

Interestingly, this disparity is not merely a matter of extremes. Infants in the middle experienced shortfalls in survival, as well. For example, those whose mothers have some post-high school education have a death rate of 8.0 per 1,000 live births. In other words, we have a sliding scale of infant mortality that corresponds with maternal education. More years of education for mothers translate into better rates of survival for their children.

This pattern holds true across the nation. The commission has established a national benchmark of 3.2 deaths per 1,000 live births, the lowest infant-mortality rate seen in any state among babies born to mothers with 16 or more years of schooling. That's a rate we know is achievable — and the rate we must strive to achieve for all families.

But how to get there? First, we need to acknowledge that there is much more to good health than health care. In many ways, where and how people live, learn, work and play have more impact on their health than medical care.

As a doctor, I know firsthand that this is true. Poor health rarely occurs in a vacuum. It is shaped by many factors, including education and family income and the resources and opportunities they provide, like access to nutritious foods and adequate housing.

Provide opportunities

Take education, for example. Every child should have the opportunity to an excellent education. Poor education can lead to limited job options and lower income, which, in turn, can limit a family's chances to live in healthy homes and neighborhoods. That's a big part of why we have such a wide disparity in infant mortality rates in this country. If we addressed education and other social issues as part and parcel of health, we wouldn't have so much illness that required so much medical care, including an enormous amount of emergency care.

We spend more per capita on health care than any other country in the world, and yet our health is not nearly what it should be. Nor will it be, until we start focusing more on health than we do on illness. We need to pay more attention to what it means to be born healthy, grow up healthy and maintain good health as adults.

The fact that none of us is as healthy as we should be shows that all of us — employers, educators, public officials, religious leaders and others — need to come together and identify community-based solutions for improving health.

These solutions should be practical, affordable and grounded in evidence. They're out there, but we need to determine which ones will work best for our communities and put them into action. Providing opportunity is what we in the U.S. do best.

We need to give all children the opportunity to see their first birthday and develop into healthy adults. We need to mobilize our energy and our people here in Tennessee, and we need to do it now, before we write off the health of the next generation.



Oct 09 2008






Cliff Bryant

Physicians for Peace

Dir. Communications & Marketing


[email protected]







Norfolk, Va. (10/9/2008) — Physicians for Peace, a Norfolk-based international non-profit organization focusing on medical education in the developing world, honored Former Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, M.D. with the  Charles E. Horton Humanitarian Award for Global Health during the organization’s Celebrate the Nations 2008 Gala on October 4 in Virginia Beach, VA. Sen. Frist, M.D. served as the keynote speaker for the event.


 “To receive an award bearing Dr. Horton’s name is a tremendous honor,” Frist said.  “Medicine can serve as a currency for peace throughout the world, bringing hope to those in despair and forging new alliances in even the most remote corners of the globe.  Physicians for Peace is a shining example of that principle, and I’m grateful for their tremendous work.” 


Frist’s work in the field of global health aligns with the Physicians for Peace mission to foster medical diplomacy. As Frist recently wrote in the Yale Law and Policy Review, “Health is a unique vehicle that crosses boundaries in times of war and distress, and in times of suffering and turmoil. Working to improve the health of our fellow man sends a message that speaks to our common humanity and serves as a vehicle for peacemakers.”


Frist, who devoted 20 years to practicing medicine as a cardiothoracic transplant surgeon before entering public service, represented the state of Tennessee in the United States Senate from 1995 to 2007, and served as Senate Majority Leader during the final four years of his tenure. 


Since retiring from the Senate, Dr. Frist has worked with many charitable organizations, including Africare, Samaritan’s Purse, Save the Children and The ONE Campaign. At least once a year, he travels as a doctor to sub-Saharan Africa as part of World Medical Mission to do surgery and care for those stricken with disease. He is the Chair of the nonprofit Hope through Healing Hands, which promotes improved quality of life for communities around the world. The organization’s motto, “Using Medicine as a Currency for Peace,” echoes the mission of Physicians for Peace.


Speaking at the Physicians for Peace Gala, Sen. Frist expressed the core message of the evening. “Health and health care is the lifeblood of our future,” he noted.  “It touches every life—our grandparents, our parents, and our children.  It is intimate, and personal; it is built on trust; and it is fundamental to long-term economic growth – of a family or of a nation.”

The Charles E. Horton Humanitarian Award for Global Health is given in honor of the late Physicians for Peace founder, Charles E. Horton, MD.  Horton, an internationally recognized humanitarian, founded Physicians for Peace in 1989 and served as its leader until his death in late 2006. Through Horton’s leadership, the organization has touched the lives of tens of thousands of patients and medical professionals in more than 50 countries around the world. The award was given last year to Professor Jeffrey D. Sachs, noted expert on global development and Director of Columbia University’s Earth Institute. 


“Sen. Frist’s commitment to addressing the developing world’s health crisis is the embodiment of Dr. Horton’s vision and passions,” noted Physicians for Peace President and CEO Brig. Gen. Ron Sconyers (USAF, Ret.). “His passion and compassion is an inspiration to the Physicians for Peace family, and indeed for humanitarians the world over.”  



Physicians for Peace is an international private voluntary organization that mobilizes healthcare educators to assist developing nations with unmet medical needs and scarce resources. Through effective, hands-on medical education and training, clinical care and donated medical supplies, Physicians for Peace creates long-term, sustainable, replicable, and evidence-based projects to help partner nations build medical capability and capacity to help themselves. Volunteers for the 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization have conducted medical missions in more than 50 countries. More information is available at www.physiciansforpeace.org.


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