Sociology graduate Ben Belknap (’06, ’16) joined the Peace Corps following completion of his undergraduate degree. He was stationed in the village of Kingiti in Tanzania, where he lived with a local family and immersed himself in the culture.
He found that the locals were drawn to him in their search for medical assistance and he served them the best that he could without any medical training.
“The villagers would come to my little house and assumed I would help them with any sort of medical ailment,” Belknap said.
Motivated by this lack of medical care, he joined forces with other sociology professors to create the Kingiti Fund, which focuses on scholarship and health care. The program provides resources for students to further their education for $250 a year, in addition to providing emergency training to medical staff in local hospitals.
The non-profit also plans to extend their education and emergency medicine projects into other regions. “We have a lot of projects going on right now. We are in a moment of growth, and we’ve had so much luck with this,” Belknap said.
He has returned to the village several times even as he finishes his residency program in Brooklyn, New York. He plans to continue his work, serving the people of East Africa with education and medical care.
For the full story and how to get involved, visit uoflalumni.org.