The light Magazine

Dr. Rasha Kelej partners with Kenya’s First Lady to upgrade healthcare

Written by: George Kalisa
Saturday, May 18th, 2019, 12:45

Dr. Rasha Kelej the CEO of Merck Foundation met the Kenyan First Lady, H.E Margaret Kenyatta on May15 in Kenyan capital Nairobi during which the duo discussed partnership opportunities particularly building healthcare capacity.


Merck Foundation is a philanthropic organization with a mission of improving the health and wellbeing of people along advancing their lives through Science and Technology.   


Key health areas at the centre of the talks include Oncology, fertility and diabetes.  


“It was an honor and to meet and hold talks with the Chief Executive Officer of Merck Foundation, Dr. Rasha Kelej. I am looking forward to partnering in the training of more oncologists and experts in diabetes and infertility management (…),” H.E Margaret Kenyatta told local media.   


Dr. Kelej had introduced her services in in the strongest East African economy at least two years ago by providing Kenyan medics embryology training on fertility specialty and reiterated her commitment to continue rolling out the programme nationwide to enhance easy access to quality and on journalists and equitable fertility care.


Besides, she has underscored her organization stance to break infertility stigma hence bringing hope for a happy life to many Kenyan women who have for long suffered in silence.


“I am proud and elated to meet Her Excellency, The First Lady of Kenya, Madam Margaret Kenyatta to discuss Merck Foundation’s commitment to improving the health and wellbeing of people of Kenya by improving access to quality and equitable healthcare in the country by training more doctors in the fields of Fertility, Cancer and Diabetes care through nationwide programs. Also, to work closely to break the stigma of infertility in Kenya and other African countries,” observed Dr. Rasha Kelej who is also the President of Merck More Than a Mother.



At least 100 Kenyan women mostly the childless and infertile have gained financial independence through starting own businesses with the support of Empowering Berna project under the flagship global programme ‘Merck More than a Mother’ in Africa.


Other activities by Merck Foundation include a two-year Oncology Fellowship programme in partnership with the University of Nairobi expected to build the capacity of Cancer care.


To raise awareness on the threat of non-communicable diseases such as Diabetes, Cancer and hypertension Merck Foundation partnered with journalists and artistes. At least 150 Kenyan journalist have received basic and internationally accepted reporting skills and best practices during the first-ever Health Media Training, local media reported.    


To achieve the organization’s mission Dr. Rasha Kelej has so far partnered with several First Ladies on the African Continent including those of Sierra Leone, Zambia, Burundi, Senegal, Botswana, Chad, Ghana, Central African Republic, Kenya and Niger.

Leave a comment

What Other people say: