Meet Dr. Itengre (center)

Dr. Itengre is a medical doctor who worked at an obstetric fistula repair hospital in Niger for 6 years. He moved to his home country of Burkina Faso to start a fistula repair clinic and skills-training center for women suffering from obstetric fistulas – one of the worst conditions women in the developing world can experience because of the lack of medical care. Dr. Itengre operated on a woman named Sarata who was married at 16 and became pregnant. She delivered at home with no medical assistance, resulting in a fistula and the stillbirth of her baby. Because of the constant smell of urine, her husband divorced her. She lived as a social outcast for 9 years and was forced to beg for money. Two weeks after Dr. Itengre performed the fistula surgery, all issues related to her fistula had been remedied. She then began a one-month stay at a facility that provides emotional support and income-generating skills. At her 6-week follow-up appointment, she reported, “I am really thankful for your help. Now I can go back to my village and live a normal life. I have learned some skills that will help me make money. I am still young, so I hope I can find a new husband and begin a family.”

With SowHope’s help, Dr. Itengré built and runs a dedicated fistula clinic that is able to perform more than 300 obstetric fistula surgeries per year in addition to vocational training.