Population and Public Health

Global Health Equity Week Spotlight: Marina El Khawand

Marina El Khawand

In recognition of Global Health Equity Week 2023, HIMSS is celebrating women in nonprofit leadership who share a commitment to realizing the full health potential of every human, everywhere.

Explore what drives these leaders, learn about their organizations and consider championing their missions.

Learn more about Global Health Equity Week.

Marina El Khawand, Medonations

Marina El Khawand founded Medonations NGO at the age of 18 after the 2020 Beirut explosion, marking the genesis of her journey as a passionate humanitarian and human rights advocate. Her early involvement in humanitarian and community work, rooted in her upbringing within the Lebanese community, formed a strong foundation.

Marina's engagement continued through her school years, culminating in her association with Girl Scouts. These experiences collectively shaped the woman, humanitarian and lawyer she is today, driving transformative global change and fiercely advocating for equal health rights for all.

Tell us about your organization’s mission, its impact on advancing healthier communities and the people you serve.

Medonations' mission unfolds as a lifeline for Lebanon's communities. Born from the aftermath of the devastating 2020 Beirut explosion, our organization's core purpose is to provide free, equal, and equitable medical assistance to all individuals across the nation. What began as a response to the immediate crisis has grown into a lasting commitment to advancing healthier communities.

After three years of tireless fieldwork day and night, Medonations stands as a beacon of hope and impact. Through our relentless efforts, we have saved over 20,000 lives across the country. Our reach extends globally as we have established connections with both Lebanese and non-Lebanese individuals from over 50 countries. These connections have led to the establishment of medical collection points in these countries, all united in the name of humanity and the shared purpose of saving lives.

Medonations' impact is felt profoundly within Lebanon's borders as well. We have covered the costs of more than 110 surgeries for Lebanese individuals, providing vital medical interventions that would have otherwise been out of reach. This holistic approach to healthcare encompasses their commitment to providing medications, medical checkups, surgical support, and even essential supplies like baby formula and diapers.

We serve the hopeful eyes of the elderly woman who finally receives the medication she needs, the anxious child who finds solace in our embrace, and the struggling family whose burdens are eased. Each life we touch through Medonations embodies a story of resilience, a testament to the human spirit's capacity to thrive amidst adversity.

What is your long-term goal? And what will it take to reach this goal?

Our long-term goal, aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals, is to ensure equitable access to healthcare for all by 2030. To achieve this, we aim to expand our reach by establishing comprehensive community free clinics (fixed and mobile) across Lebanon, offering free medical services, medications, educational programs, and preventive care. Partnering with more individuals across the recent and new countries to collect more medications and launch new drives in new nations and cities. We will continue to advocate for policy changes that prioritize healthcare as a fundamental right. Continuous fundraising efforts and engaging a global network of supporters will be pivotal in sustaining our mission and amplifying our impact.

Are you looking for certain types of technology partnerships who can support your mission?

Absolutely, Medonations is actively seeking technology partnerships that align with our mission to expand access to quality healthcare. We're particularly interested in collaborations that can provide advanced medical equipment such as wearable skin patches with Advanced AED machines (portable), AccuVein AV500, patient detection watches, new rapid tests or test patched to detect deseases (other than covid, HIV …) embedded biosensors, wearable devices, wearable exoskeletons, smart contact lenses, and smart glasses. These technologies should be user-friendly, space-efficient, and equipped with accurate capabilities to enhance patient care, diagnosis, and treatment. Our goal is to equip our upcoming free clinics with state-of-the-art equipment that facilitates early detection, treatment, and healing processes. We welcome partnerships with technology providers who share our vision of accessible healthcare for all .

What are ways HIMSS members and staff can get involved with your organization?

HIMSS members can engage with our organization in impactful ways to become lifesavers:

  • Promote Medonations' mission through their network and raise awareness about our efforts to expand equitable healthcare access. Assist us to share this story of Lebanon and Medonation’s mission, expanding our supporting network globally.
  • Share their expertise by volunteering remotely to provide medical consultations, workshops, or advisory services.
  • Explore potential partnerships for technology solutions that align with our goal of advancing healthcare and education. Help us identify and connect with suppliers for these technologies. 

About Medonations

  • Country served: Lebanon
  • Countries Collecting Medicines: Lebanon, France, USA, UAE, Portugal, Qatar, UK, KSA, Bahrain, Kuwait, Nigeria, Cote D’ivoire, Morocco, Egypt, Tunisia, Estonia, Italy, Sweden, Canada, Algeria, Oman, Spain, Iraq, Armenia, Jordan, Pakistan, Denmark, Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, Cyprus, Greece, Argentina, Australia, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico, Peru, South Africa, South Korea, Uruguay, Venezuela, Turkey, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, India
  • Medonations website
  • Medonations on LinkedIn
  • Medonations on YouTube

Global Health Equity Week

October 23 - 27, 2023: Join us for this global action week celebrating the power of information and technology to improve access to healthcare for all communities.

Join Us

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