A Note from Our CEO and Board Chair
Dear friends and admired partners,
2022 marked a decade since the official launch of the END Fund. It was a reflective and sentimental time for us both, as it also marked a decade working collaboratively as Chair and CEO in service of this transformational mission to see an end to the suffering caused by neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). We remember well when the END Fund was just a vision and a hypothesis (and some even called it a crazy one!). We believed there was room for a whole lot more people to join the movement to end NTDs, as donors, champions, collaborators, and thought partners, and that if philanthropists who may have not even heard of NTDs were given a clear, effective, and efficient way to support the best frontline organizations working on disease elimination, they would jump at the chance.
We are astounded to reflect that since 2012, over 6,400 donors have invested through the END Fund, in turn supporting local partners to deliver over 1.5 billion NTD treatments in over thirty countries and provide tens of thousands of people the surgery they need to prevent blindness and disability. There are also now tens of millions of people who live and will raise families in communities where these diseases are no longer present. Our hearts couldn’t be filled with more gratitude for all of you—our supporters, collaborators, and treasured friends—for helping to make this possible.
And while it’s astounding to reflect on the past decade of progress, we actually find ourselves even more enthusiastic and optimistic about what’s ahead. More and more communities and entire countries will be able to stop mass treatment for NTDs as they prove that disease transmission has been interrupted. Innovation in digital tools, precision disease mapping and surveillance, and expanded lab capacity will help accelerate and bring efficiency to our work. The incredible leadership inside of Ministry of Health NTD teams across so many countries gives us optimism and confidence that the goals outlined in the World Health Organization’s (WHO) 2030 NTD Road map are indeed achievable if we remain focused and entrepreneurial in our approach.
The END Fund has only been able to achieve what we have to date because all of you as partners and supporters have openly shared your insights, suggestions, and critical feedback to help us learn and evolve to the changing needs in our sector. We look forward to this coming year of continued collaboration and open communication, and especially to celebrating many more disease elimination milestones together.
2022 impact highlights
treatments value at (USD)
health workers trained
“2022 was a big year for us, and for the entire sector. We celebrated the tenth anniversary of the END Fund and the launch of the Kigali Declaration on NTDs, a country-led advocacy movement that will provide a platform from which to encourage and celebrate more commitments to ending NTDs by heads of state. The END Fund’s 10th Anniversary Learning Summit showcased the successes, learnings, and collaboration of many of our partners in government and program implementation. It demonstrated the evolution of the END Fund and our ecosystem of partners, gave us insight into what is possible by 2030, and promoted our vision of greater African leadership against NTDs.
We were also proud to launch the Accelerate Resilient, Innovative, and Sustainable Elimination of NTDs (ARISE) Fund in 2022. Through a country-centric approach, it will invest in national NTD programs’ own resource mobilization strategies and strengthen the leadership and capacity of decision makers who represent communities affected by NTDs.”
— Dr. Carol Karutu, Vice President, Programs
Our impact stories
Our Fund Model
The END Fund manages a portfolio of investment funds to control and eliminate the most prevalent NTDs. Currently, the END Fund offers four funds as investment opportunities for private philanthropists, foundations, corporations, and others.
Expanding Treatments to Reach Everyone at Risk
Beatrice Mugata watched each year as her three grandchildren, whom she cares for, received deworming medication in school. She lives in Bungoma County, a district just north of Lake Victoria in Kenya. This county has been targeted for annual, school-based deworming campaigns for years. She noticed her grandchildren’s energy levels improved, and they were able to help her more with chores around the house. But, she wondered, if they all lived in the same area, ate the same food, drank the same water, why wasn’t she also getting this medicine to kill the parasites living in her area?
The Ten Year Journey of Ending NTDs in Ethiopia
The END Fund began working in Ethiopia in 2013, a collaboration that has now seen ten years of partnership towards ending NTDs in the country.
When the Ethiopian Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH) launched its NTD Master Plan in July 2013, they prioritized efforts to tackle schistosomiasis and intestinal worms. With this mandate, in 2014 the END Fund began to work with the FMoH, in collaboration with other partners, to provide deworming treatments to nearly eight million children in the first year alone. And, that was just the beginning.
The Fly Catchers of Senegal Making River Blindness a Relic of the Past
Ten kilometers from the border of Guinea, Saliou Toure sits on the bank of the fast flowing Gambia river for eleven hours. His facial expression is serious, his eyes are focused, and his slacks are meticulously rolled up, leaving his legs visible. With a quick hand motion, he traps a black fly in a glass tube as it lands on his leg. “We are careful and committed because flies can leave the other side of the border to come here,” he says. Toure is the leader of a team of four fly collectors from Yamoussa, Senegal; they were asked by the village chief to be volunteers in 2006.
For Toure and his team, the 2022 fly collection season was special—they received news from the national onchocerciasis elimination committee, that Senegal has interrupted transmission of onchocerciasis, becoming the second country on the African continent to reach this milestone.
“Basically, our work now is to watch and do everything so the disease doesn’t come back.“Saliou Toure
Centering Country Leadership
Our newest addition to the END Fund is the Accelerate Resilient, Innovative, and Sustainable Elimination of NTDs Fund, known as the ARISE Fund. It is the second phase of a direct philanthropic response to the UK FCDO funding cuts to NTDs in 2021.
The ARISE Fund will invest in five countries— Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Kenya, South Sudan, and Senegal—to develop resource mobilization strategies and strengthen the leadership and capacity of decision makers who represent communities affected by NTDs.
Flagship Fund Fills Critical Funding Gaps in East Africa
“When I was brought here, I was very ill. I had a lot of pain here on my shoulders, back pains, and my legs were very weak. There was also a severe headache. I was completely bedridden.”
– Loyele Ikaale, 15, is a patient receiving VL treatment (pictured on the left).
Loyele Ikaale is 15 years old and responsible for watching over his family’s herd of cows. As he led his livestock through the arid region of Turkana, Kenya, the constant buzzing and occasional bite from sand flies was more than just an annoyance—it was an encounter with the world’s most deadly NTD.
Visceral leishmaniasis (VL), also known as kala-azar, is second only to malaria as the most lethal parasitic disease. The infection attacks the liver, spleen, and bone marrow. Without treatment, death is all but certain.
“We have the tools we need. The priority now is to deploy them in the right way to get to elimination.”
-Daniel Boakye, Senior Technical Advisor, the END Fund
Kigali Declaration on Malaria and NTDs
In June 2022, Paul Kagame, President of Rwanda, officially launched the ground-breaking Kigali Declaration on NTDs. It builds upon the 2012 London Declaration on NTDs, securing high-level commitments from global leaders to end these devastating diseases by the end of the decade.
In response to the Kigali Declaration, the END Fund was proud to commit US$161 million on behalf of the philanthropic community to co-invest with government partners in pursuit of a world without NTDs by 2030. As Daniel Boakye, Senior Technical Advisor, the END Fund, wrote in a blog post for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, “We have the tools we need. The priority now is to deploy them in the right way to get to elimination.”
Tenth Anniversary Learning Summit
The END Fund held a Learning Summit in Nairobi, Kenya from May 30 to June 1, 2022 to mark the tenth anniversary of the END Fund’s mission to end NTDs and the partnerships that have taken us so far. The summit brought together 250 delegates in-person and virtually from five continents and highlighted programmatic and advocacy accomplishments and best practices from the past decade. The Summit gave participants a chance to share lessons, network, and collaborate across geographic regions to develop new solutions to accelerate the 2030 NTD elimination goals.
The Summit brought together government officials, led by Susan Mochache, Principal Secretary, Kenya Ministry of Health, as well as donors, representatives from the WHO, Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), academic institutions, the END Fund Board, implementing partners, and the media.
We believe in the fundamental dignity of all human beings, and so we:
-Uphold a vision of human flourishing at the center of our work and interactions.
-Embrace and respect differences, foster an inclusive culture, and instill fair, ethical, and equitable practices.
-Center the experiences of people and communities affected by neglected tropical diseases in all that we do.
We have a singular, passionate focus to end NTDs, which place a significant and preventable burden on the human condition, and so we:
-Optimize our time and resources to maximize progress toward achieving specific disease control and elimination goals.
-Leverage our unique assets to be of best and highest service to the collective movement to end NTDs, ensuring we complement and do not duplicate the work of others.
-Strive to ensure that no one at risk of NTDs is left behind.
We believe that honoring joyful and effective relationships is central to achieving our mission, and so we:
-Treat everyone with respect, kindness, and a spirit of generosity and gratitude.
-Invest the time and attention needed to build, earn, and maintain trusted, long-term, and collaborative relationships with partners, communities, investors, and colleagues.
-Respect everyone’s unique life journey and perspectives.
-Recognize relationships are complex, nuanced, and evolving and require commitment, humility, and compassion.
We take seriously the privilege and responsibility of stewarding our investors’ resources and serving communities at risk of NTDs, and so we:
-Employ a highly efficient, effective, and results-oriented approach to mobilizing and allocating capital.
-Invest in data-driven, country-led, and sustainable programs.
-Ensure excellence, elegance, and accuracy in all communications and interactions with investors and partners.
-Commit to being a reflective, learning organization, proactively sharing progress, lessons learned, and challenge.
We are committed to embracing innovation and maintaining an entrepreneurial spirit in all that we do, and so we:
-Stay flexible, nimble, creative, and action-oriented in our approach.
-Challenge the status quo and take smart risks.
-Foster, identify, and fast-track innovations that can increase our impact.
-Cultivate curiosity, humility, courage, and a growth mindset.