MCEH trainee from Zanzibar, Tanzania

Fatma is the firstborn in a family of five. She was born in 1969 in Pemba in Zanzibar Island, Republic of Tanzania. Both her parents are associated with healthcare; her mother is a retired gynecologist and her father a nurse. She too joined the medical profession is currently employed with the Ministry of Health as a national eye care coordinator for the Zanzibar Islands and mid level eye care worker. She has trained as a cataract surgeon in Malawi and has a post graduate diploma in community eye health from the University of Cape Town.

Fatma has collaborated and coordinated, both locally and nationally in her country, on several eye camps, outreach screening and surgical programs. She is keenly involved in planning, clinical teaching, management, supervising and conducting staff training at Primary Health Care Units Centers. She is married and has a son.

Despite all her commitments and engagements, Fatma seized the opportunity to fulfill her dream of obtaining a Mastersí in Community Eye Health (MCEH) when she chanced upon the LVPEI/UNSW program. She promptly applied for it and was selected.

At LVPEI, she soon felt so much at home that she didnít miss Zanzibar much. The excitement of an impressive work environment and the sizeable exposure contributed immensely to her skills and knowledge. Thanks to the training, she has upgraded her capability in areas such as community assessment, planning, project management, epidemiology, biostatics and research. She is so enthused with the experience that she plans to continue with her studies and pursue a PhD.

Inspired by the LVPEI model, she has plans to make suitable changes to the eye care program she works with back home in Tanzania. She is also eager to continue communicating with LVPEI in different ways in terms of sharing experiences, case studies, research, etc., and plans to send more students to the institute.

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