Cool Causes We Think Are Cool: Partners in Health

Dye mon, gen mon.

Beyond mountains, more mountains.

This Haitian proverb has long intrigued and inspired me. When coupled with the poignant response of George Mallory — who perished on his attempt to climb Mount Everest — to a question regarding his desire to climb it: “Because it’s there,” I realize that humanity possesses an incredible, unfathomably powerful desire to conquer the seemingly unconquerable. In the words of JFK, “We choose to go to moon… and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard [Mercy me this is practically a quotes post now].” Perhaps no greater manifestation of this innate human drive to do the things that are all but beyond our power exists than the non-profit organization Partners in Health (PIH). This organization and its founder, Dr. Paul Farmer, were the subjects of one of my favorite books (written by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Tracy Kidder), Mountains Beyond Mountains. * The book traces (or rather… Tracys) the organization’s battle to overcome a seemingly insurmountable mountain, the deplorable health conditions in some of the poorest areas of the world. Partners in Health has established community health centers and clinics throughout Haiti, Peru, and West Africa and have provided lifesaving medicinal care in these areas where healthcare is scarce at best. Having treated and prevented such tragedies as child and maternal deaths, cholera, tuberculosis, HIV/AIDS, cancer, and Ebola, PIH has saved countless lives. They have overcome numerous mountains on their quest, yet are never satisfied. They see more mountains ahead; they look ahead to higher peaks — to safeguarding more lives — and they fight onward and upward. If you would like to support the organization, you can donate here. All donations from now until the end of the year will be doubled, and 94% of all donations go straight to helping those in desperate conditions and severe need.

*Fun Fact! This book inspired the Arcade Fire song of the same sub-name [“Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)” to be exact] and led to my eventual discovery of the organization in the song’s phenomenal interactive music video.


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