As idealistic as he was, H.E. Benjamin Mkapa wanted to see the Mkapa Foundation lasts from generations to come, and jointly with the Board of Trustees several strategies of resource mobilization were adopted to ensure long term sustainability of the Foundation. Amongst the strategies is the establishment of an Endowment Fund.
Commenting on the Endowment Fund, the Chairperson of the Benjamin W. Mkapa Foundation Board of Trustees, Dr. Adeline Kimambo, said the aim of establishing the Fund was to enable it to be a sustainable source of funding that would allow the Foundation to fulfill its responsibilities.
“This Endowment Fund will be a strong innovative finance tool that will provide BMF with a sustainable and long term source of income. This Fund will help the institution to have the financial resources that it will invest, and our goal is to reach an Endowment Fund of Tanzanian Shilling 33 billion ($ 15 million) by 2025/26 ,” said Dr. Kimambo.
She said the Foundation had been all along financed by various development partners including the Norway Government that provided the initial financial support to establish the Foundation in the first five years, and follow on donors, which include the Global Fund to fight against AIDS, TB and Malaria; Irish aid; Abbott Fund; USAID; UNICEF; UK-FCDO(DFID); UNFPA; UK Comic Relief and Walter Reed. She appreciated their continued trust on BMF to work with them in attaining the national development goal and pleaded them to continue their support towards the Endowment Fund.
Dr. Kimambo said the Fund would support implementation of the Foundation’s five-year Strategic Business Plan ( 2019-2024) and beyond, as such complement the donor financed initiatives through the Insitution. .
“The financial resources which will be mobilized towards the Endowment Fund will be invested in perpetuity to generate fixed income streams that will be used to attain the UHC targets, which was the fundamental drive by HE. Mkapa. All investments that are to be made will follow the investment principles, and we will ensure that the funds are used for the intended purposes,” said the board chair.
She said the Fund would focus on several areas such as provision of scholarships on health related studies, hiring health professionals (Mkapa fellows), supporting emerging diseases response such as COVID-19 and enabling peripheral health facilities to have better infrastructure, medical equipment, and medicine. In addition the Fund will support community based organizations that have continued working with the community on attending public health challenges.
For his part, President Samia commended the Foundation for coming up with the idea of setting up an Endowment Fund and promised that the Government would contribute to the Fund.
“The Government supports the establishment of this Fund, and it is my promise that the Government will contribute,” said President Samia as she was cheered by the participants in the occasion.
President Samia said the Government would continue the existing partnership with the Foundation in implementing its five-year Strategic Business Plan that aligns well to the National Health Sector Strategic Plan V.
Earlier, the Benjamin William Mkapa Foundation Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Ellen Mkondya Senkoro said since the Foundation’s establishment 15 years ago, BMF has touched more than 20 million people, especially those living in rural areas.
She said the Foundation has employed about 9,000 health professionals cumulatively and made it a civil society organization that employed many workers in the post-government health sector.
Similarly, she said the Benjamin Mkapa Foundation has managed to build and renovate 537 health facilities across the country and enable more citizens to access health services in their areas.