Brian Samuriwo initiative brings health, hope to the elderly Brian Samurio greets elders at a Health Expo for the Emakhandeni/ Luveve constituency recently

Raymond Jaravaza, [email protected]

TIGHT budgets often leave residents of Emakhandeni and Luveve, especially the elderly and vulnerable, grappling to secure essential healthcare but a beacon of hope has emerged. Stepping away from the predictable political rhetoric that pervades election seasons, Brian Samuriwo, a denizen of Luveve and Zanu-PF candidate for the Emakhandeni/ Luveve constituency, chose action over words.

Through the Brian Samuriwo Foundation, a non-profit organisation dedicated to empowering both the elderly and youths, a transformative initiative has been launched — a free medical health check and medication service that is sowing the seeds of a healthier and brighter future.

Beyond political promises, Samuriwo understands the challenges the elderly face in trying to access healthcare. His initiative, driven by genuine compassion, offers tangible solutions. A dedicated team of doctors and pharmacists is setting up temporary medical centres in the neighbourhoods on a rotational basis. This innovative programme provides not just health checks but also essential medication, bringing relief to residents burdened by ailments like diabetes and hypertension.

“The foundation empowers youths with skills to be self-sufficient through various programmes that we run in both Luveve and Emakhandeni suburbs but we decided to do something for the elderly as well. The medical services programme runs on a rotational basis whereby we set up a centre in each suburb on given days so that residents can access free health checks and also receive free medication.

“We have a team of four doctors and a pharmacist on site and the programme is open to everyone. We will continue running the programme even after the elections,” explained Samuriwo in Emakhandeni suburb where over 50 elderly residents had gathered at Easy Pick shops to access the medical services.

The Brian Samuriwo Foundation extends its support beyond healthcare, lending a helping hand to bereaved families by providing firewood, water and food.

“I was raised in Luveve and some of the elderly women and men I’m seeing here today are my parents and this is a way of giving back to the community that raised us,” said Samuriwo when his team had moved to Mudamburi Shopping Centre in Luveve suburb to offer the free services.

Dr Tinashe Sanyatwe, one of the foundation’s doctors said diabetes and hypertension are among the most common health concerns for the elderly.
Among those benefiting from this vital service is Chipo Marinda, a hypertensive woman who knows the peril of missing medication due to financial constraints.

Dr Stephen Dzamara (left) attends to Chipo Marinda while ZANU PF Luveve Makhandeni aspiring Member of Parliment Brian Samurio looks on, recently

Chipo, a second-hand clothing vendor often struggles to afford the US$20 required for her medication.
“I’m not ashamed to say that sometimes I default on taking my BP medication when I fail to get money to buy the pills. It’s a reality that I have to live with, money is hard to get these days and US$20 for the medication is a lot of money for someone like myself who is not gainfully employed.

“I was diagnosed with the condition in early 2020 and I’m still adjusting to living with BP. When I heard that Samuriwo was bringing doctors for free medical check-ups and medicine, I was one of the first people to come here early in the morning. The doctor said my BP is stable and I was given free medication that will last a month so I’m very relieved,” said Marinda.

Janet Masuku, a 73-year-old who is diabetic and has battled the condition for over two decades, said the programme was assisting many people.
“I have not been to a check-up in a long time and I’m so happy that a child who grew up here in Luveve brought doctors and nurses to assist us for free. I have been given my medication and I really want to thank Samuriwo for the good job he is doing for us elderly people,” she said.

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