In July of 2018, MiracleFeet began a partnership with Association de Solidarité aux Enfants atteints de Malformation du Pied (ASEMP) Mali to sponsor two clinics in the Bamako region of Mali. ASEMP was founded in 2016 to assist children with physical disabilities and rebuild the clubfoot program following the unrest in Mali in 2012.
In December 2013, a local team of providers at Centre National d’Appareillage Orthopedique (CNAO) Mali founded a community-based organization to address clubfoot treatment. However, without technical and financial support little progress was made. Meanwhile, Dr. Kire Almamy, an orthopedic surgeon and co-founder of ASEMP, learned about MiracleFeet’s work at an international congress of the African Federation of Rehabilitation Professionals (FATO), eventually resulting in the partnership agreement with ASEMP to support the clubfoot program.
MiracleFeet now provides comprehensive support to the Mali clubfoot program. Prior to this support, treatment was available but was cost-prohibitive for most families. MiracleFeet provides resources to strengthen treatment programs, including Ponseti refresher training, community outreach and parent education resources, and a mobile data collection system (CAST). With this support, the clubfoot treatment providers are maintaining consistent contact with families, retaining patients, and providing ongoing follow-up. Additionally, the program provides transportation subsidies to families with financial difficulties to ensure they attend scheduled appointments. As a result, the dropout rate is very low and nearly 90% of patients remain in treatment for the duration.
The program has expanded to include three clinics including CRAOF Sikasso, the capital of the Sikasso Region in the South and Mali’s second largest city. ASEMP and MiracleFeet plan to scale treatment in Mali to include a total of five clinics in four regions – Bamako, Sikasso, Mopti, and Segou.
The clubfoot program strives to reach families and communities across the country to ensure all children born with clubfoot in Mali have access to safe, affordable, quality treatment.