RMF – Organizational Concepts

1. Friends helping Friends

Friends made it possible to start our work in the tsunami relief efforts in Sri Lanka in the beginning of 2005, and this concept is one of our mainstays: we are friends helping friends by creating a global network of friends. This means, i.e. that we take the ethics of being a friend seriously, treating each other with respect and dignity, acknowledging that everyone has something different to contribute to create the big vision, and also that we are one human family and friends are everywhere. It also includes the way we treat the people in need we are supporting, treating them as friends, with the dignity and respect they deserve.


2. Keeping it personal

We know the people we are working with, here in the U.S. and internationally. And we know the children and their families we are supporting. We follow up with updates, photos and reports very frequently. Real Medicine Foundation grows with its members, we grow “from the inside out”; building the structures of our work around people we trust and allowing them to introduce new people they trust. That’s how our global network of “Friends helping Friends” keeps growing.

We also always connect with other established organizations on the ground where we have our projects to make sure our work gets implemented and followed up on. We hire local personnel and work with local volunteers; and have our U.S. team members visit our projects as well to learn about the needs and successes first hand, to train, to supervise and to give support.


3. No pre-conceived notions, listening to what is needed

We are using a creative approach: rather than go in with preconceived notions, we approach each situation by asking, "How can we help?" In this way, we can respond effectively and appropriately with customized services designed to best meet the immediate and long-term needs of the specific individuals and communities we serve, and with the resources we have available.

Our global network of "Friends Helping Friends" enables us to directly connect with those in need, carefully access how to make the greatest impact, and cooperatively deliver the highest-quality support. Whether we are providing medical/physical, emotional, social, or economic support, our goal is to empower with real solutions that heal, give hope, and rebuild lives, both now and in the future.


4. “Real” Medicine

We provide humanitarian support to people living in disaster, post-war, and poverty stricken areas. We believe that "real" medicine is focused on the person as a whole by providing not just the medical/physical, but also emotional, economic, and social support, in a culturally sensitive way, embedded in the community of the people we are helping.


5. Comprehensive, Integrative Healthcare Projects

Reviewing our work of the last four years, the best way to describe it is that our projects have grown into “Comprehensive, Integrative Healthcare Projects”. We often start out with a primary healthcare clinic, which often serves as a hub for our activities. We add maternal-child healthcare; we add HIV/AIDS care where needed; we always focus on prevention and healthcare education to empower our patients to be partners in their care. We provide food where the poverty is so extreme that people don’t have enough to eat. We help to put children back into school where we can. We add microfinance projects if we have the funding. And, based on today’s Best Practices Modern Medicine, we also include proven effective holistic methods such as Acupuncture, Plant Based Nutrition, Therapeutic Bodywork, Homeopathy and Yoga. 

Programs addressing some of the developing world’s most important issues, such as Maternal and Infant Mortality, Malaria, HIV/AIDS, Malnutrition and Literacy are part of Real Medicine’s commitment to treating the whole person and providing sustainable integrated solutions.


6. Accounting transparency

Mentored by a Senior Advisor of GTZ, Real Medicine Foundation’s accounting follows the rules of this globally highly regarded, successful and effective organization, and is completely transparent. We receive the originals or scans of every single receipt, invoice, and expense. (GTZ is an international cooperation for sustainable development, operating worldwide. GTZ provides viable, forward-looking solutions for political, economic, ecological and social development in a globalized world. Currently, they are implementing some 2,300 development projects and programs in 126 countries, having their own offices in 67 of these countries.)


7. Long-term support – We Don’t Leave

Real Medicine Foundation was founded in May 2005 inspired by lessons we learned after working for months in the tsunami relief efforts in Sri Lanka. We established a children’s clinic in an area devastated by the tsunami. While in Sri Lanka we realized that most organizations going into crisis areas to provide aid for immediate need, tend to ignore that people’s lives remain shattered long after physical trauma is no longer an issue. Real Medicine Foundation was created to provide longer term, sustained support in disaster, war-torn and poverty ravaged areas in addition to immediate physical aid. This long-term support addresses physical, emotional, economic and social needs, helping heal the ‘whole person’ and the ‘whole community’.

Follow our story, meet our teams, and learn more about our work at realmedicinefoundation.org

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