Many IMA staff members, like Patrick Shatshi, approach their jobs as a way to pay it forward.
Shatshi started out as an unskilled worker. With his fourth baby on the way, 28-year-old Shatshi joined the Access to Primary Health Care Project’s construction team to build the health center in his village of Kibulungu, one hour by motorcycle from the provincial capital of Kasaï in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Shatshi was determined to be a part of his community’s effort—with the help of ASSP and funding from the UK’s Department for International Development—to construct a much-needed health center. It was also important to him to be on the team that constructed the health center where his wife, Clarisse, would safely give birth to their new daughter. He succeeded!
The construction on his health center was completed in August 2014 and his wife gave birth in October. The health center of Kibulungu serves a population of more than 14,000 people and provides care to more than 700 people in need per month.
Since joining the ASSP team almost three years ago, Shatshi has continued, along with many other unsung heroes, to strengthen the remote communities around him. Those communities may be barely accessible through jungle, by nearly impassable road and across rivers with canoes hewn from logs as ferries.
Shatshi’s enthusiastic and tireless drive earned him a promotion to mason, the highest level on the job site before entering management. With his new skills, he now builds the infrastructure that ensures health, healing and well-being for his community.