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Safari Soiree to Save Lives of Newborns
Wood River Valley volunteer Claire Morgan makes new friends in the small Tanzanian village of Malongwe.
Monday, June 3, 2024


A Safari Soiree designed to raise funds for a neonatal intensive care unit in Tanzania will be held Friday, June 14, at Mountain Humane.

Attendees are invited to dress in safari dress or, at least, safari colors of white, cream, green and khaki.

The event is being organized by the Dental Legacy Foundation, a local 501©(3) non-profit founded by Wood River Dental Care doctors Jared Hill and Daniel Nelson. The 6 p.m. affair will include a three-course meal of hors d’oeuvres, salads, main courses and desserts catered by local chefs and a live and silent auction.

Among the speakers: Father Justin Boniface Mwanyelo, the director of St. Gaspar Hospital.

St. Gaspar Hospital serves as a crucial referral center for patients across Tanzania, including expectant mothers and children. Due to a lack of neonatal equipment, the hospital faces high mortality rates among mothers, premature babies, and neonatal patients.

More than 75% of Tanzanian newborn deaths occur within the first week of life, with half happening within the first 24 hours post-birth. By supporting the establishment of a NICU, the Dental Legacy Foundation aims to enhance the quality of neonatal care and save countless lives.

“Father Justin’s dedication to providing top-tier healthcare and community programs has made a profound impact in Tanzania, and his visit is a testament to the strong partnership between St. Gaspar Hospital and the Dental Legacy Foundation,” said Ryan Passey, executive director of the Dental Legacy Foundation.

Tickets are $225 per persosn, available online at Proceeds go to purchase neonatal equipment, such as crash carts, neonatal CPAP machines, portable ventilators and a manifold oxygen system for the NICU.

“The Safari Soiree is not just an event; it’s an opportunity for our community to come together and make a tangible difference in the lives of newborns and their families,” said Passey.

The Dental Legacy Foundation was founded by Wood River Valley dentists to improve global health through dental care and humanitarian efforts. It collaborates with international partners to provide essential medical and dental services to underserved communities around the world.

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