About Us

Our mission is to save lives and relieve human suffering.  We strengthen healthcare in sub-Saharan Africa, providing better access to care and improving the quality of local health systems.

Our Strategy

Touch Foundation strengthens local health systems in sub-Saharan Africa. We apply a three-phase strategy for scaling solutions to the most pressing global health challenges.

Much of our work to date has focused on designing and implementing programs in the Lake Zone of Tanzania and demonstrating impact.  Successful solutions are then scaled up to a regional/national level​. Ultimately, we aim for our solutions to be adapted and replicated in other countries facing similar challenges to achieve broad, transformative impact.


Our Three-Phase Approach

Learn more about our strategy

Board of Directors

Our Board of Directors brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to Touch Foundation, providing strategic guidance, and helping us create opportunities for growth. Their leadership is invaluable to our work.

LOWELL L. BRYAN Chairman

CELIA FELSHER President and CEO

KEVIN J. CURNIN

CLAUDIO BRAZ FERRO

Claudia Joyce

MBAGO KANIKI

STEVEN KELMAR

Dana Kirchman

ROBERT H. NIEHAUS

Michael Patsalos-Fox

Stephen Redwood

Sean William Ryan

CHARBEL TAGHER

TOM TELES

Fr. Dr. Peter Le Jacq, MM Volunteer

Kerry Cooperman Secretary

staff

Touch employs a team of highly skilled professionals who are committed to improving healthcare and promoting health access in sub-Saharan Africa. Our team brings a wide range of expertise, with private and public sector backgrounds spanning from management consulting, clinical medicine, public health, and non-profit organizational management. Together, we address the multifaceted challenges facing health systems in sub-Saharan Africa.
Learn More About our Staff

Massimiliano Pezzoli Executive Director

Noah Leff Chief Operating Officer

careers

At Touch, you will join a team of highly mission-driven professionals with diverse backgrounds and experiences, including management consulting, non-profit management, and clinical medicine. You will work closely with team members across all levels and functions, becoming an integral part of our commitment to strengthening health systems in sub-Saharan Africa.

Touch Foundation, Inc. provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment and prohibits discrimination and harassment based on race, color, religion, gender or gender identity, national origin, sexual orientation, age, disability, or veteran status.

Financials

Touch Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. A summary of our most recent financial statements is below. Audited financials and 990s are posted as they become available.

Touch has earned four stars from Charity Navigator based on our efficient use of funds, commitment to transparency, and organizational accountability and a gold rating from GuideStar based on our fiscal transparency.

Frequently Asked Questions

1What is Touch Foundation?

Touch Foundation is an international 501(c)3 non-profit organization (TIN 20-1469976) dedicated to saving lives and relieving human suffering in sub-Saharan Africa. For over 15 years, we have been improving access to care and supporting healthcare workforces in sub-Saharan Africa. We work holistically, strengthening the diverse building blocks of the health system – all of which need to be functional to enable effective delivery of care.

Learn more about our strategic priorities and approach.

2What is Touch’s Mission?

Our mission is to save lives and relieve human suffering. We strengthen healthcare in sub-Saharan Africa, providing better access to care and improving the quality of local health systems.

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News


We established our Healthcare Technology Management (HTM) program over 2 years ago with one of the largest hospitals in Tanzania and our oldest partner, Bugando Medical Centre (BMC). Since then, the program has been improving infrastructure and introducing new practices with BMC’s Engineering Department, so engineers are better able to serve the hospital. As the program continues to expand, we asked the staff about their work and how their experiences on the job has changed since HTM began.

 

A hospital’s ability to properly treat patients rests on the usability of its equipment, technology, and generator power. This is where the ever-critical engineers come in. Hospital engineers both fix and upkeep all hospital technology and equipment, spanning from defibrillators to oxygen plants. In doing so, they ensure that patients can get the procedures they need in a timely and safe manner.

We’re excited to introduce you to some members of the team!

The first face you see when walking in the door of BMC’s Engineering Department is Mary Fidelis’. She’s been working as a secretary there for 32 years. “[I] make sure that all the jobs in the Department are completed on time,” she explains. “So when the jobs are sealed, I [work to] make sure that the clients are also happy.”

 

The job tracking system introduced by the HTM program helps her manage work orders efficiently, giving full visibility and control of maintenance activities and ensuring faster turnaround on assignments, so clinicians do not have to wait very long for equipment to be ready to go. She also points to the new workshop (get a tour here!), saying that the more convenient working space has made “the environment [more] conducive and attractive.”

 

Next, pictured here is Emmanuel Silas, who’s been on the team for almost 4 years as a biomedical engineer. “Our aim is to save the [lives] of our patients, you know. So that’s why I chose to be a biomedical engineer.” His real passion is for upkeeping and fixing cancer treatment equipment. Testing the safety and performance of each machine, which he’s doing in the photo at the top of this news story, is key for making sure that equipment is ready to go.

 

Now, meet Nziza Rufuto¸ who’s been working as a biomedical technician at BMC for 4 years. “I like when I manage to work on something that becomes a help to someone who is in need,” she says, “when I manage to do that – that’s when I’m happy about my job.” With the HTM program’s introduction of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), Nziza says that “you know exactly what you are doing, and you measure what you’re doing and you know where to improve…” Apart from tracking and identifying bottlenecks, KPIs motivate staff by making work more visible and opening space for further growth.

Nziza will be saying goodbye temporarily to the Department this year when she leaves to pursue a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical and Biomedical Engineering. Her plan is to return to BMC’s Engineering Department with enriched skills after completing her studies (learn more about Nziza’s here!).

 

Next up, Dianes Moses, also a biomedical technician. Dianes has played a critical role in implementing the Work in Progress room. This room is one of the new workshop’s core elements where the engineers’ work is organized and monitored with visual management boards like the ones in the picture. Like Nziza, she’s also pursuing her degree in Biomedical Engineering. We wish them all the best in their studies!

 

In this photo, Senior Biomedical Technician, Everest Magoti, explains how the KPI board works. Magoti has been with the Department for over 20 years, specializing in maintaining ICU and operating theater equipment. When asked why he decided to pursue this career those many years ago, he said there were two reasons: “Of course, [the] first [was] to help the people and [the] second [was] to make long-living medical equipment.”

 

Finally, Jumanne Seleman, the head of Mechanical Section, has been with the Department as a mechanical technician for 15 years. A champion of KPIs and job tracking, Seleman and his team record and monitor the performance of BMC’s Oxygen plants, ensuring that minimum oxygen purity and pressure levels are maintained to efficiently serve the hospital.

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