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When Isabelle Kamariza visited a public hospital in Kigali, Rwanda, she noticed patients carrying plates as they moved through the hospital wards. When someone announced there was food in one of the wards, the patients would run in that direction, hoping to get something to eat.
In Rwanda, meals are not covered by the national "Mutuelle" health insurance. Even with their medical bills paid, many patients find themselves lacking food and relying on their families to bring their meals.
Isabelle set out to change that.
She founded Solid’Africa, an organization that believes nutritious food is a crucial part of patient recovery. Their mission is to provide nutrient-rich meals to patients in Kigali's four public hospitals.
On a normal day, Solid'Africa's Gemura program feeds 400 patients three meals a day, but the COVID-19 pandemic is forcing other organizations to stop providing similar services, so Isabelle and her team are filling the gap by increasing the number of patients they serve. They are now feeding more than 750 patients each day.
Isabelle is also a recipient of an honorable mention by Fast Company’s 2020 World Changing Ideas and is also an Arrell Food Innovation Awards 2020 nominee.