KIT Scholarship Fund Fellows

In September 2021, nine students started a master’s programme at KIT with a scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund. They are studying the Master in Public Health or the Master in International Health. This is made possible thanks to the generous contributions from our donors.

We welcome these new ‘future leaders in health’ and hope that after a year at KIT, they can make a difference in the health situation in their country and contribute to improving the health of many people.
Would you like to support this cause? click the link below!

My name is Barra Renita and I am from Indonesia. I studied Bachelor of Midwifery and was working as a midwife in a Primary Health Care in Bandung. My main duties were working in the delivery room, providing health care in a community-based clinics for children under the age of five and pregnant women, and a program for screening and monitoring Non-Communicable Diseases. Parallel to these tasks, I was the program coordinator for HIV/AIDS in Primary Health Care.

My public health related tasks made me realize the importance of governance and health policies as well as the implementation of health services. The health development in Bandung city is very complex. There is a lack of awareness of pregnant women to check their health during pregnancy, so often early diagnosis is missed which then leads to serious problems in the next phase. Often women only ask for medical help as they begin to give birth.

Bandung has the highest number of HIV cases in West Java. There is not enough knowledge of HIV prevention methods, and HIV testing of pregnant women to prevent transmission of HIV to infant should be done.

After completing my Master in International health, I want to focus on strengthening the health system in Indonesia at the base level. I would like to implement tools to monitor and evaluate existing programs in Primary Health Care and improve them. My long-term goal is to tackle maternal and child mortality and morbidity. I belief in the huge potential of communities themselves. By putting them in priority and maintain a collaborative relation, we can improve their quality of life.

My educational pursuit would not be possible without the generous support from KIT Scholarship Fund. Thank you for enabling me to pursue my dreams.

Barra Renita from Indonesia has a background in Midwifery. She studies the Master in International Health with a scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund.

I was born and raised by a single mother in the small town of Quetta located in the underdeveloped and ultraconservative province of Balochistan in Pakistan. For the last decade, my work has focused on improving access to services related to Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) for vulnerable communities. I have been engaged in strengthening community participation and response to the emerging HIV epidemic in the country for increasing uptake of voluntary counseling and testing for HIV among transgender women, gay men, other men who have sex with men (MSM), and their partners. I have also been simultaneously involved with programs improving access to contraception, safe abortion and post abortion contraception for girls and women, bringing a media and communication lens to large national programs on the topic.
The Master of Public Health at KIT will not only develop my technical knowledge and skills but will also give me the opportunity to engage with and learn from health professionals from an array of transdisciplinary backgrounds, enabling me to better apply an intersectional lens to SRHR program design and development. The programme will provide me with academic discipline, build my knowledge, capacity, and capability as a public health professional for contributing to improvements in access to equitable, culturally congruent, and quality assured health services for vulnerable, at-risk communities in Pakistan.
With a degree in public health from KIT, I hope to rise to a senior leadership position within Pakistan’s non-profit public health sector. I hope to be able to undertake innovative work that builds on my previous communication and film production experience, to deploy media and technology to address challenges to SRHR in the country. To address public health challenges like HIV prevention and control and access to contraception and safe abortion care in Pakistan’s fragile health system, which operates in a resource constrained setting and is normatively hostile towards sexual and gender minorities, including girls and women.

Ali Asghar from Pakistan has a background in Film and Communication and LGBT Health Policy and Practice. Ali studies the Master of Public Health at KIT with a scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund.

My name is Aisha Abbad, I've graduated from medical laboratory sciences from University of Aden in Yemen and I work in the field of Water and Sanitation and hygiene promotion.
Yemen humanitarian crisis put over 80% of people in humanitarian need. We are currently approaching our sixth year of conflict, and a devastating economic and health collapse. Yemen health system does not only suffer from the lack of qualified professionals or medical equipment but also suffers the absence of things as simple as latrines and safe water. The increase of people displacement and the continuous outbreaks of communicable diseases like cholera, dengue, chikungunya, and the current covid-19 pandemic all have worsened the disrupted health situation.
At KIT I will develop my practical and academic competencies to come up with evidence-based strategies to drive Yemen health system from the emergency phase to the development phase. This programme meets my goals for addressing of the challenges of the health care delivery to the most vulnerable groups in my country.
As a young female scientist, I often face underestimation from my colleagues and the Yemeni conservative community. Women’s representation is absent in Yemen due to many reasons and the lack of opportunities is one of them. This drives me even more to equip myself with the necessary skills and knowledge to move on. Getting a master’s degree from KIT, I will serve as an example of woman empowerment to both women and men in Yemen. KIT will not only support me to acquire knowledge and skills for my home country, but it will also move forward a whole nation looking for good policy makers’ examples and looking for hope.

Aisha Abbad from Yemen has a background in Medical Laboratory Sciences and Water and Sanitation. She studies the Master in International Health with a scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund.

My name is Catherine Mwalwanda, I am a medical doctor from Malawi.
In medical school, learning in a healthcare system in Malawi, one of the poorest countries with very limited resources for health, I encountered several obvious inequalities in health access. Most rural hospitals lack even the basic medical care services, there are not enough doctors, and the high burden of disease like for example HIV prevalence. The burden of disease strains the already limited system and vulnerable populations are disadvantaged even more.
I was working as District Medical Officer for Phalombe, one of the rural districts in Malawi, with a total population of 440,000 and only three medical doctors. My main responsibility was ensuring availability of medical supplies and services in the district. When Malawi registered its first case of COVID-19 in April, 2020, Phalombe district did not have a treatment centre or supplies for treating COVID-19 patients. As a District Medical Officer leading the Rapid Response Team, I improvised by using hostels of a local nursing college as both the treatment and quarantine centre.
My work made me more interested in exploring ways to help reduce the inequalities and improve access to health care by vulnerable populations. I would like to gain relevant skills to be part of health policy formulation, especially policy that addresses inequalities in access to health care. After my studies I would like to contribute towards achieving universal health coverage in my country by improving our health system that is limited by resources. I am grateful to the KIT Scholarship Fund for this opportunity.

Catherine Mwalwanda from Malawi is a medical doctor. She studies the Master of International Health with a scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund.

My name is Darlen Dzimwe and I come from Malawi. I have a background in Education, and have worked mostly as research consultant in public health projects, many of them on Sexual and Reproductive Health (SRH) issues. I have encountered many cases and situations to do with social injustice in health care, especially for the communities in the rural areas. The public health services have often poor quality and the private health services are only available for those who can afford it. This drove me to want to contribute more, especially on good quality health care services for all, including Sexual and Reproductive Health services.
More than one-fifth of Malawi’s population is youth and at risk of unwanted pregnancies, sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV/AIDS. To minimize these risks and secure a healthy future for adolescents, it is important that policymakers, service providers, journalists, and advocates have solid evidence regarding sexual and reproductive health needs of Malawian youth. In addition there is need for more of parent-child communication interventions to enable discussions about SRH in the household. Parents influence their children’s attitudes and behaviors, promoting such interventions means educating and transmitting values, beliefs and expectations.
I want like to grow beyond data collection and interpretation and make contributions by educating the public, bringing health awareness to the underserving communities/people and together with them advocate for better health services. I also strive to contribute to improving issues of equity and that everyone has access to good quality health care services since health care is a human right.
I thank KIT Scholarship and it’s donors to make this dream possible.

Darlen Dzimwe from Malawi has a background in Education. She studies the Master of Public Health, track Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights with a scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund.

My name is Paramita and I come from Indonesia. As a doctor and a law graduate, fairness and equality in public health are important to me. I have worked mostly as medical doctor in remote rural areas where infrastructure is often poor or missing. Through my practice, I have seen obvious health disparity between the patients I serve in rural areas and in cities.
I have seen how lack of information in rural areas has led to low public awareness on health, which often resulted in poor health outcomes of the community. Limited access to electricity and communication put the community a few steps behind of those who live in big cities. In addition people often could hardly get proper medical care and had difficulties getting to the nearest health facility due to the bad roads. This was especially the case after rains.
I am convinced that health is much broader than healthcare. When people mention public health, I think about culture, policy, environment, and even politics. I believe, that next to diseases and lifestyle, these things play important roles in people's health. Good development policies are crucial for health equity. Culture is also an important factor in community health. In rural areas, especially with indigenous tribes, sometimes people rejected medication due to cultural reasons and beliefs.
During this master’s programme I look forward to discussing with public health professionals about similar problems in their countries. After my studies I plan to serve back in rural areas in Indonesia with more knowledge about health policy and management. I look forward to cooperate with the Government of Indonesia to create suitable policies in order to achieve health equity for all.

Paramita, Putu Sri Agung Paramita Kelakan from Indonesia is a General Practitioner (medical doctor). She studies the Master in International Health with a scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund.

My name is Nyasha Phanisa Sithole and I come from Zimbabwe. I have a background in Sociology and Gender Development studies and see myself as a feminist and advocate for girls and womens rights with focus on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) and HIV prevention.
When I was still in high school I was first trained as an HIV and AIDS peer educator, and since that moment my passion for public health programming that supports wellbeing of girls and women has not ceased.
Women and girls in sub-Saharan Africa continue to be disproportionally impacted by HIV and SRHR challenges and significant social and structural barriers, including gender inequality, stigma, discrimination and unequal access to essential health services and education. Girls, young women and women continue to be marginalised, excluded, left behind and in some cases criminalised due to current policies and laws which restrict their agency and autonomy in participating in public health programmes focusing on HIV prevention and SRHR and their overall wellbeing.
I have over the years channeled my energy, expertise and experience to ensure that I represent girls and women and also support capacity strengthening of advocates and activists to create stronger movements of girls and women in the African region.
As the work I have been doing has been evolving, I had greater interest to study the MPH programme, especially the SRHR track. I hope to gain 1 extensive knowledge and skills and create networks and linkages that can enable me to be a public health leader, promoter and community researcher. Post graduate I intend to fully use newly acquired knowledge and skills to support girls and young women and offer consultancy services to the government of Zimbabwe to improve public health programmes for women and girls related to SRHR and HIV including promotion of human rights and social justice.

Nyasha Phanisa Sithole from Zimbabwe has a background in Socioly and Gender studies and studying the Master of Public Health, Track in Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights. She is founder of the network Development Agenda for Girls and Women in Africa (DAWA).

My name is Eliza Apprazita KC and I am from Nepal. I have worked in the sector of Monitoring and Evaluation, learning and documentation for over five years with focus on sexual reproductive health and rights, inclusive education, maternal health in relation to young adolescents and people with disabilities.
Nepal is a middle-income country that deals with a number of public health problems such as, poor health systems, political unrest, triple burden of diseases (communicable, non- communicable/injuries and COVID), high maternal, newborn and child mortality, nutritional deficiencies. At sub-national level health inequity continues in accessibility, affordability and acceptability of healthcare services. Health service centers are not always accessible to all. This is especially the case for disadvantaged groups and vulnerable people such as women, children, adolescents, people with disabilities and elderly. As Nepal is a multi-culture and multi ethnic country, acceptability of services is another reason behind the prevailing health inequity within the country. Due to various cultural and religious barriers the country is facing a hard time to respond the need of diverse groups of people. In addition, there is a lack of resources to manage the burden of disease infections, planning and supplying medicine and equipment and skilled human resources to address the needs at the community levels.
My holistic education goal from this master is to gain in-depth knowledge and skills in the dimensions of health system and management to become proficient in exercising information to improve the health status of the Nepalese communities, and contribute to policy making on challenges around quality health service delivery and utilization.
I look forward to working in the Health Policy sector and contribute to improving the health of people and help contribute to achieve national target of Universal Health Coverage and Sustainable Development Goals.

Eliza Apprazita KC from Nepal has a background in Public Health. She studies the Master of Public Health at KIT with a scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund.

I was born, grew up and studied in Palestine. I studied medicine and worked as a medical doctor at UNRWA, an international organization that provides essential healthcare services and public health campaigns for Palestinian refugees in the Middle East.
Throughout the past years, the Palestinian healthcare system has been largely reliant on international aid, rendering it fragile, under-resourced, and in constant crisis. Meanwhile, the existing structure implies that the problem lies in policy making with a leeway for improvement in case suitable expertise becomes available. Throughout my work as a part of the healthcare staff, I came to notice a missing link between those who run the processes at the lower level of the management hierarchy, and those who are at the top, making management arbitrary and ineffectual. The knowledge and skills that I will gain during this Masters programme will make me more competent in channeling human and financial resources into real public health needs through wise management. As a result, a more robust system is conceivable—one where targets are clear, management is effective and funding is sustainable.
Another topic that I want to learn more about relates to the cultural effectiveness of health promotion. Recently I was involved with several campaigns to the refugee population, especially after COVID-19 started. Aside from the mass hysteria that the pandemic has brought on, we struggled how to set up health campaigns. Challenges were how to set up campaigns for a population with different cultural characteristics. How should we work on health promotion taking into account people’s understanding across different sociocultural backgrounds? I very much look forward to learn about health management and policy, where an intact approach is followed to discuss ambitious ideas in a collective context, while simultaneously putting emphasis on the cultural aspect, which I myself find a priority in international health.

Sari Taha from Palestine is a medical doctor. He studies the Master in International Health with a partial scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund and a scholarship from the Lutfia Rabbani Foundation.

My name is Angie Erditha and I come from Indonesia. It was the desire to help others that ultimately drove my decision to become a doctor. My passion to help was later reinforced as a volunteer doctor who serve people affected by conflict, armed violence, and disasters.

Indonesia is a very large and diverse country, vulnerable to health issues in human-made crises and natural disasters.
As a doctor and a healthcare humanist, I have contributed to Indonesia’s plans and programmes to create a sustainable development, with a focus on fostering an equitable social development.

I worked also as volunteer as medical emergency response doctor for several disaster relief organisations. I participated in missions for Rohingya refugees, during medical emergency missions for victims of earthquakes in North Lombok, and many other missions for victims of war, violent conflict, outbreaks and other disasters.

KIT Royal Tropical Institute offers the perfect blend of courses for me, because of its high quality of research and education; its standpoints and decisions that are based on a clear responsibility for the development of society; its work that is guided by a global engagement that constantly reminds
us of our role in the world; and its stimulating and dynamic work environment.

I believe that the Master in International Health will provide me with the knowledge and skills to critically reflect on health and healthcare in low and middle-income settings and in Indonesia. This will help me to participate in further development and strengthening of people and organisations involved in humanitarian medical emergency response in Indonesia, with a focus on poorer, vulnerable, and underserved populations. This way I want to improve health and achieve equity in health for all Indonesian citizens regardless of circumstances. Thank you for this opportunity.


My name is Ebtisam Zabara, I’m a Pharmacist by profession and I come from Yemen, a low income country being devastated by over five years of active war. I have worked in different positions and since 2014 I have worked in Yemen and Jordan as a mission pharmacy manager.

I am delighted and excited to pursue the Master’s in International Health at KIT Royal Tropical Institute. I believe that this course is crucial for my community. My 12 years of related work experience has given me significant insight into the challenges that the health system in my country is facing which are most relatively similar in other low and middle-income income countries.

I am currently experiencing the global health response to the COVID-19 outbreak, which makes me extremely motivated to be as effective support as possible in the fight against such pandemics. I strongly perceive the need for sound policymaking and healthcare resource management, taking into account the existing situation in the field. I would like to learn more about disaster settings, public health, and health resource management.

It is difficult and painful to see people suffering and dying. This pain is made worse in knowing that there is something that could be done to ease their suffering. With KIT scholarship assistance, I am now able to join this master’s program and, in turn, be able to be a valuable part of the improvement process of people’s lives in Yemen or elsewhere in the future.


I am a Bachelor of Science Nursing graduate from the University of Nairobi in Kenya. After my internships, I became passionate about obstetrics and gynecology particularly midwifery and child health and worked for a number of years as a midwife and in neonatal child health.

I decided to move to research and was involved in feasibility studies for microbicide trials (Dapirivine ring that helps stop the spread of HIV among women) for highly vulnerable populations – communities where women have no say in sex matters. That is how my interest in Public health started. Since then I have worked in programs coordinating activities for Young Key Populations, Adolescent First Time Young Mothers providing comprehensive HIV and Sexual Reproductive Health services including Gender Based Violence.

Women bear a huge burden in health. Especially for women living in poor economic status, where culture does not give them power to negotiate for sex, this situation is even worse. Girls have early marriages, early sex debut, loss of school years and lack of work, disease, higher burden of unwanted pregnancy, cultural practices (dowry exchange), maternal and neonatal risks high.

I am extremely grateful for this opportunity. After graduation of this Masters of Public Health I will work in my country and other regions in the world to ensure that at planning level, at policy level- we continuously engage these girls and women in activities, advocating for resource allocation for programs and training them- empowering them.

Impact is not to be read in books, but to be given and done by us. Thank you’’.


My name is Tariro Mantsebo. I am a young medical doctor originally from Harare, Zimbabwe. I trained in medicine in South Africa and I have been working in the public health sector as a clinician for the last four years in rural South Africa. Working in the rural community of Mafikeng, in the North West province opened my eyes to the lack of adequate comprehensive health education and understanding, amongst young people regarding sexual health, reproductive health, and mental health. With limited resources and accessibility, I was driven to want to know how I could better serve such a community and many others in improving their health and wellbeing.

I hope my time at KIT will guide and teach me how to navigate the field of global public health in a way that is innovative, engaging and impactful. It is a great opportunity to be taught and inspired by public health professionals creating change in their fields of focus.

My future goals are to use the tools and skills I gain at KIT to work towards improving the quality of healthcare access, health education and health promotion that young people, in particular young women in Southern Africa receive.

My love for public health and medicine has driven me to sacrifice, challenge myself and leap into a new environment with hopes of gaining experiences, insight and growth to utilize back in my home country and region.

I will represent the values of my people and KIT Scholarship Fund, and use this is as a platform to empower and improve the lives of those around me.


MY name is Farzad. I am a medical doctor from Iran. I have been working in the field of harm reduction, HIV/AIDS, drug addiction, and youth health, especially among vulnerable groups. I was involved in different public health projects.
The MPH allows physicians to transition from pure clinical to research, policy and/or management work, preparing them to innovate changes for effective health systems, responsive to the health needs of populations. Usually, people who enter the field of health with a clinical vision can help their community more.

I think that the master of Public Health will provide me with the knowledge and skills that I need to improve the public health situation in my country so that . I strongly believe that prevention is better than cure. I am sure that the presence of different experiences from students from different countries can be the biggest advantage of this program along with experienced experts and specialists in this institute and it can change our view towards thinking globally.

Today's world situation (COVID-19 Pandemic), further showed that in the field of public health, the whole world should be united and all nations must stand together for a healthier world.

Thank you KIT scholarship Fund for your support.


My name is Khin Thawdar Shein and I come from Myanmar and am a medical doctor by training.

I am a passionate public health professional with about twelve years of experience working on health care projects with various international and local Non Profit Organizations; These consisted mainly on maternal, child health and immunization projects within and outside Myanmar. My roles were management and development of health programs for serving population in need, coordination with subnational and national health staff and providing necessary technical assistance for health system strengthening.

Myanmar is putting efforts to strengthen the current health system by formulating a National Health Plan and by aiming to achieve universal health coverage in 2030. Nevertheless, Myanmar still has a large human resource gap in public health services.

I strongly believe this Master in International Health programme at KIT is essential to be equipped with skills and competencies I need to contribute better to the health situation in my country. Learning in an international environment is also providing me with an opportunity of broader networking amongst diverse nationalities of public health professionals and to better understanding of lessons learned and best practices.

After completion of this Masters, I am committed to serve as an international health leader working on strengthening of the health system which can accelerate access to health for all people in the country without discrimination in race, religion, and culture. With strong confidence in my professional skills, I will continue my leadership journey and be the voice of people in need and generate the idea of introducing right to health for each and every citizen.


My name is Alhadi and I come from Khartoum, Sudan. I am a medical doctor by profession. I have worked in different hospitals and at the federal ministry of health in the global health directorate.

Before coming to KIT I was working at the healthcare system strengthening project in Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunization (GAVI). These different work experiences made me realise that a large part of the sufferings of the Sudanese people -in terms of health- are due to the devastation of the healthcare system. Health services are not efficient, not properly distributed, not affordable.

The system lacks equal & fair distribution of facilities and resources -evident by the congestion of patients and medical professionals in Khartoum and urban centers, and their major absence in rural areas.

Since 2019, Sudan has observed a drastic social and political change, dawning a new era, new hopes & vision. We need to realize the importance of creating a sustainable health system in Sudan, based on the principles of equity, justice, and quality. In order for that to be achieved, we need to create strong health policies that are built on data, evidence & research. And then design the strategies and long term vision for our systems and dissect it into medium term and short term objectives.
With the MPH/ICHD learning experience, I aspire to working on a strong health system in Sudan based on the true health demands of the country and the people. I am very grateful to KIT Scholarship Fund for this opportunity.


I am a Clinical Officer from Kenya with experience ranging from sub-national clinical work, national, region and international policy-related work. Kenya like most developing countries is facing a double burden of diseases due to the raising prevalence of Non communicable diseases (NCDs) while still struggling to contain communicable diseases. The rapid rise in NCDs in Kenya is driven by the adoption of unhealthy lifestyle resulting from globalization and industrialization in the sub-Saharan Africa. Consequently there is an increasing prevalence of the NCDs risk factors such as obesity, tobacco use, alcohol consumption and inadequate physical activity. If comprehensive policies and structures are not put in place, NCDs threaten the economic and social development of developing countries as they are debilitating, expensive to manage and cause premature death.

I believe that the MPH/ICHD programme with major in Health Systems, Policy management track will help me bridge the gap in knowledge in research development, data analysis, scientific writing while fine tuning policy development and evaluation skills. Upon completion of my Master in Public Health, I aspire to participate actively in the efforts to halt and reverse the NCDs in my country, continent and the world at large. The Social Determinants of Health approach seem the most wholesome and cost-effective to reduce the NCDs burden in developing countries as it addresses the risk factors as well as providing interventions that support behaviour change with supportive policies to facilitate sustenance of healthy lifestyles.

I cannot adequately express my joy for this opportunity from KIT Scholarship Fund and KBF Foundation to achieve my aspiration to build my academic qualification and therefore validate my professional contribution to public health.

Dorcas Kiptui, clinical officer from Kenya studies the Master of Public Health, track in Health Systems Policy and Management with a focus on Non-Communicable Diseases including Obesity, with a scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund and KBF Foundation.

I come from the state of Nagaland in India. This region with more than three million people borders Myanmar. It is a land of tribal communities where socio-economic problems are widespread.

After my MBBS graduation as a doctor, I started working under the Health & Family Welfare Department of Nagaland in different rural areas. During this period, I saw the disparity of the health status in Nagaland especially in the rural areas. I realised then that effective policy making from the ground level was necessary, so I decided to pursue my masters in an area which would help me be a part of the system so I would be able to make a difference through proper management and be the voice for the people who need it.

I am thankful to KIT for giving me this amazing opportunity to study my Masters in International Health and to KIT Scholarship Fund and it donors for supporting and enabling me to pursue my dreams. I believe the skills acquired from this programme will help me be a part of the movement to successfully educate, encourage and empower people to live a healthy life. I believe I would be able to make informed and enlightened contributions to improve the present health care system for the underprivileged communities across the borders and in my home country India, Nagaland in particular and play a significant role to help connect people and the health care system.
I hope to serve as an instrument to enhance the efficacy, effectiveness and efficiency of existing health programs and find better ways to promote health.

Oonno Jamir, Medical doctor from India studies the Master in International Health with a partial scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund. He works as Medical Officer.

My name is Merette Khalil from Cairo, Egypt. My background in public health has spanned from grassroots level advocacy, to entrepreneurship for maternal health education, to health systems research and policy. I have always been motivated by social justice and am particularly passionate about ensuring the right to health for all, especially women and girls and those in vulnerable settings.

I am grateful for the opportunity to study at KIT for my Masters, not only to sharpen my skills in health systems management, but more so to strengthen my critical thinking, leadership, and multi-cultural communication, as I learn from scholars who value equity and public health practitioners with experiences from all around the world.

I look forward to bringing the lessons and experiences back to Cairo, and to all future field assignments related to the global humanitarian agenda. I aspire to transform the landscape of maternal health, not just in Egypt, but across the surrounding Region. My dream is to reform health systems in my Region to become more gender-inclusive and equity-sensitive as they respond to the increasing pressures from escalating conflicts and increasing refugee populations. My hope is to become a catalyst for this change that would drive systems to protect, center, and serve the most vulnerable, provide access and quality care to marginalized communities, empower women and girls, and improve health equity for all. One step at a time… starting with KIT.

Merette Khalil from Egypt has a background in public health and is a Doula. She studies the Master in International Health with a partial scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund. She works as Technical officer and a Doula.

My name is Melina Dzowela, from Malawi. I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Education from the University of Malawi and I have twelve years professional experience in the management of development centred projects in in my country, particularly in the areas of Sexual Reproductive Health Rights, HIV/AIDS, Comprehensive Sexuality Education programmes targeting youth and adolescents.

I believe that key to sustainable STI and HIV prevention programmes, is ensuring availability of quality and age appropriate Youth Friendly Health Services, accessibility to Comprehensive Sexuality Education (Life Skills), existence of well-tailored impact mitigation activities, and a supportive community structure in place.

My motivation for applying for the Master of Public Health/International Course in Health Development course, track in SRHR is that this qualification will enhance my capacity to formulate effective strategies and design sustainable programmes to apply in Malawi and in the developing world.
Upon completion of the course it is my intension to continue working in non-governmental organizations that work to increase the accessibility of health facilities for all Malawians, at the same time improving the quality of service delivery at the health facilities and even community level. As my heart and special interest lies with working with adolescents and young people, it is my intention to continue coordinating programmes that facilitate a supportive environment for adolescents and young people to access their sexual and reproductive health rights.

Melina Dzowela from Malawi has a Bachelors Degree in Education. She studies the Master of Public Health, track in Sexual and Reproductive Health with a scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund. She is currently working at the Christian health Association of Malawi as an SRHR programme manager.

My name is Ramadhani, and I am an Indonesian community dentist with a physical disability. Indonesia has a population of over 260 million people living mostly in Java as the capital Island. Based on the national basic health research, 22% Indonesian population are people with disabilities. The access to good quality health care shows great differences within Indonesia. Professionals in health education are needed in my country in order to reach the optimum level of public health.

As candidate of Master in International Health at KIT Amsterdam, I am interested to empower people with physical disabilities in Indonesia as human health resources, I want to contribute to creating affordable and effective health facilities, and innovate programs in health prevention and promotion. KIT Royal Tropical Institute Amsterdam has courses that provide basic and advanced knowledge about social determinants of health, basic research methods, health needs and responses, health systems.

In addition KIT as the SDGs house will provide me more information about the SDGs which I can implement as lecturer, government employee and health professional both in national and international perspectives in my country. KIT Scholarship Fund has supported me not only in finance, but it helps me also to broaden my international network and opportunities for the future. I look forward to put newly acquired skills to use in Indonesia in support of the people who need it.

Mochamad Nur Ramadhani from Indonesia has a background in dentistry. He studies the Master in International Health with a scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund. He works at the Faculty of Dentistry Universitas Padjadjaran, Bandung, Indonesia.

"The idea of pursuing studies at the Master level has been my long-term desire since 2007 when I joined MSF. Over the years I have worked in many different functions and countries (a.o. Malawi, Uganda, Kenya.) and was involved in several HIV/TB projects. I got involved with vulnerable and needy people in some of the most underprivileged communities. I have become aware of the need to understand in greater depth how to effectively implement and evaluate projects, appropriately guide staff with the best possible technical capability, and how to effectively work and collaborate with senior government officials, especially in the Ministry of Health and relevant NGOs.

I am confident that the knowledge and skills I gain during my studies at KIT will enable me to improve my current capabilities in managing health services and render better and more effective service to people in low income settings and in my home country of Malawi.”


“During my work in community health care programmes I realised that the health systems and policy management in
Myanmar needs to be strengthened if we want to achieve Universal Health Coverage. There is still so much poverty and suffering. Communicable diseases as well as non-communicable diseases are still a very big burden to the community.
Studying the Master of Public Health at KIT was my life dream and thanks to KIT Scholarship Fund and generous donors I am able to fulfill this dream. With the knowledge and skills I gain at KIT I am determined to contribute to improving the health situation of the people in Myanmar, to reduce the burden of communicable diseases and other health problems and strengthen the health systems in Myanmar, and give back to the communities in need from the experience I had!”


“My name is Linda, I am from Burundi and have experience working in a district hospital in Rwanda. I find passion by providing health care. During my work in the hospital I realized that some realities are not thought in school. I can prescribe medication but  this would not help if someone cannot pay for it. The majority of the patients that came to the hospital had chronic diseases which were diagnosed very late because they only came to the hospital in times of crisis. This complicated the treatment and increased the costs. I could prescribe medication but this would not help if patients could not pay it.
Throughout my studies and clinical experience I my interest in preventive medicine grew. I could see how important it is for a community to be healthy. It is always better to prevent than cure. This helps the community but also the economy of a country.
The reason why  I wanted to study the Master in Public Health programme at KIT is to be better equipped to assess and address the health needs in my country and contribute to better health through policy making. KIT’s vision and programme offers a unique learning experience. I envision working in public health institutions in my country and to contribute to the global health system, expertise about the economy factor, policies and management for health systems.
Thanks to the support of KIT Scholarship Fund I will use the acquired knowledge and skills to develop public health in my country, Africa and all over the world. ”

Linda Manirambona from Burundi, background in Medicine, studied Master of Public Health at KIT with a scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund.

“I am Yemeni Female doctor and since my graduation I have been working in emergency relief programs in different areas in Yemen especially in Health and Nutrition. During this period I have worked with many Humanitarian international NGO’s working in life saving programs mainly focusing on the most vulnerable people (ACF International, Save the Children International, Medecins du Monde (MDM) France, and MSF Spain, Unicef). I feel however that I still need to increase my knowledge, build my capacity and learn new skills to contribute better to the improvement of health in my country.
Yemen is one of the developing countries in the middle east with low income where there is a lack of public health specialists and there are huge public health issues, e.g. high rate of acute malnutrition, food insecurity, a fragile health system. 
Thanks to KIT Scholarship Fund I am now able to study the Master in International health at KIT Royal Tropical Institute and this will enable me to support my country and help in saving lives of vulnerable people as well as improve the level of health system in Yemen. This year at KIT will provide me with the essential skills which in my path as a public health specialist. I look forward to working on public policies and strategies that can have a positive preventive impact. And as such will bring benefit to the most vulnerable populations, such as pregnant women and children under 5 years old.”

Amal Atef from Yemen, background in Medicine, studied Master in International Health at KIT with a partial scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund.

“Being the village health worker, my mother was responsible for managing minor ailments also overseeing local distribution of food handouts donated by charity organizations. As I grew up, I began to enjoy serving people and assisting my mother in her community duties. The realization that we were standing as a beacon of hope for the community brought about a tremendous feeling of joy and fulfilment in me. Through these experiences, an interminable passion for the health and welfare of the public was integrated into my genome. I was aided by several benefactors that contributed financially to enable me to study. 
After my graduation with Bachelor of medicine and Bachelor of surgery degrees I worked in a general hospital and later at a district hospital in a remote area of Matebeleland South province in Zimbabwe. During this period I realised the importance of public health as I was involved as a trainer of trainers in many public health implementation strategies in TB and HIV diseases. The pursuit of the Public Health discipline grants me the perfect platform to give back to my community which has always been my ambition. There is an immense sense of pride and fulfilment that comes with the knowledge that one is the pillar of the whole nation’s health domain and not just a clinician who can’t treat beyond their arm’s length.
I chose to do Masters in International health to be able to acquire knowledge and skills in developing strategies and policies to improve the health situation in my country and other low and middle-income countries through different platforms. It is my conviction that my Master in International Health qualification will go a long way in reviving the health delivery system of our economically hamstrung nation. I endeavour to spearhead the establishment of effective local research bodies so that we get a tailor made understanding of the epidemiology of diseases affecting our population.
I am grateful to study at KIT Royal Tropical Institute because I believe it presents me with an opportunity to broaden my knowledge in an academically stimulating environment. Mixing with international students of diverse cultures and backgrounds at KIT will surely empower me and broaden my understanding of public health.”

Marjorie Jaffet from Zimbabwe, background in Medicine, studied Master in International Health at KIT with a scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund.

“Despite the challenges of being a working mother with 2 daughters living modestly in Egypt, I have learnt how to build my capacity and assume multiple responsibilities both at family and career levels. My professional and voluntary activities have helped me realize the integration of health and human development, focus my ideas and thoughts and set my main goals of helping in the development process, particularly in developing countries. Having worked at the health minister’s technical office, I have been given a unique opportunity to actively participate, learn and widen my horizons about the complexity of health issues in Egypt given the strong exposure to various governmental bodies and international organizations. I am prepared and confident to evaluate situations and to contribute well processed opinions and offer solutions on the subject of health systems. I am motivated to continue my education on the topics related to Public Health. Both living in Egypt and volunteering abroad have allowed me the privilege of developing a unique perspective on international healthcare development. 
I am fully convinced that this prestigious master program in Public Health is essential for me to gain the practical tools and required knowledge to realize my dreams of improving healthcare in Egypt. I come from a modest hard working family who invested all their resources in our education as a way for a better future not only for us, but also for the whole community. I am fully convinced that this prestigious master program in Public Health is a stepping stone for a middle age female like me to gain the practical tools and required knowledge to realize my dreams of improving healthcare in Egypt and the whole world.”

Doaa Abdalla from Egypt, background in Medicine, studied the Master in Public Health with a partial scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund.

“I have a background in medicine. Currently I am working as project site manager (Occupational Medicine doctor) for healthcare facility in central of Sulawesi Indonesia in Donggi Senoro Liquefied natural gas (LNG). Previously, I worked for another healthcarepost in a coal mining region in Kalimantan on Borneo Indonesia. In both regions I have to work with a lot of people from other countries in South East Asia. I felt I wanted to develop myself to be able to work more efficient and on prevention of the health problems these regions are facing.
I really enjoy learning through problem solving, handling health event, and managing for win win solution, my application decisive was the fact that the course emphasises for those who aspired to develop orboost your career in international health, so i am sure that this course is designed for me.
I believe that studying at KIT under the guidance of experienced professionals I will gain the tools that are needed to contribute to improve the health situation on all levels in Indonesia.” 

Rully Christina from Indonesia, background in Medicine studies the Master in International Health with a partial scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund.

“Since I graduated from college was my dream to pursue a postgraduate study. Education has been a vital part of my career. I am a graduate of Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) in a premier university. I am a registered nurse and midwife by profession. At present, I am working with the Episcopal Commission on Health Care of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP). I am the program officer of the entire TB program of the church, concerning 86 dioceses all over the Philippines. I am also the nurse of the HIV Center of the Camillian Fathers, a church-based initiative to help and support people living with HIV that also offers preventive services such as testing and health education.

I chose to study the Master of Public Health/International Course in Health Development (ICHD/MPH) because I want to help my country and my community to have an equal and unbiased access to health services. I believe that the skills I learn at KIT will help me in my advocacy towards access to sexual and reproductive health and rights including HIV-related services in my country. These are my driving forces and my motivations to pursue this master’s programme. Following the MPH/ICHD at KIT (Royal Tropical Institute) will advance my level of knowledge, and learning with people from all over the world will help me to learn new and better methods in addressing public health concerns.

I believe that pursuing this program will be a great help in empowering youth like me in addressing public health concerns and pushing limits to reach equality on rights and health care. I humbly take this opportunity to thank KIT Scholarship Fund and the Netherlands Fellowship Programme (NFP) for granting me this scholarship. I look forward to sharing what I learn in my community in my constant effort to help those in need. Changing someone’s life for the better is something to be proud of. 

Thank you.”

Daren Paul Katigbak from the Philippines, background in Nursing and Midwifery, studied MPH/ICHD at KIT with a scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund and co-funding NFP, Nuffic.

“Being from Afghanistan, I have studied Nursing in Pakistan while living as refugee. 

Since more than ten years I work with the international humanitarian organization Medicins Sans Frontieres. I worked over five years in Pakistan as national staff , supporting Afghanistan refugees and host population in remote parts of Pakistan. Since 2011I joined the international pool of humanitarian aid workers and since then I have worked in South Sudan, Uzbekistan, Papua New Guinea and Iraq.

My work ranges from nutrition, reproductive health, outbreak response, emergencies, mass vaccinations campaigns, MDR, and drugs sensitive TB program, sexual and reproductive health, communicable and non-communicable disease programs, across the nations, around the developing world, and in developed nations. 

My ultimate goal is to work in Aghanistan with the Ministry of Public health. Studying the Master in International health and Netherlands Course in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene from KIT will equip me with both technical and soft skills that I can apply in my daily work as health professional and in any future work and projects. I look forward to apply these skills in the communities that need it.”

Abdul Wasay from Afghanistan, background in Nursing, studies the Master in International Health in 2016-2017 at KIT with support from KIT Scholarship Fund and Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF)

“I am a medical doctor who works with the the Hospitals’ Management Board of Ondo state government in southwest Nigeria. Since my graduation from medical school seventeen years ago I have worked in different clinical positions, as a health manager leading healthcare service delivery, as well as working on the implementation of health programs in rural and semi-urban settings.

In each of these working experiences I realised that in addition to my medical education, I needed to acquire skills in public health, particularly health system policy and management in order to approach my task of healthcare service delivery and program implementation from a broader perspective. 

I reached this conclusion because I observed on many occasions that our health system often leaves gaps that make health interventions difficult. I think this is partly due to improper engagement of stakeholders. Consequently efforts aimed at improving health are often met with disappointing outcomes.

Coming to KIT for this Master of Public Health and International Course in Health Development is one right decision I belief I made to launch myself into a realm of new knowledge discovery that will enhance my continuous and better participation in the process of contribution to health development in my home state in particular and Nigeria in general. The contribution of KIT Scholarship Fund to my co-finance scholarship will facilitate my acquisition of these new skills and knowledge. 

I look forward to apply these new skills and knowledge in influencing the government of my state and country to evolve health policies that favor universal health coverage and improve the health and well-being of our people.”

Ayodotun Aminuu from Nigeria, background in Medicine, studies MPH/ICHD at KIT with a scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund, co-funding NFP, Nuffic and self funding.

I come from Zambia and have studied nursing and midwifery. I have worked in hospitals as nurse in charge and also as Mother and Child health Coordinator with the District Health Management Office. Currently I work at a school of nursing and midwifery as a tutor.

I would like to study the Master in International Health at KIT to help me gain solid and vast knowledge in health issues both in the local and international set up. I hope to learn how health activities are done and how policies are formulated and utilized in various parts of the world.

With the knowledge learned at KIT I look forward to participate in policy formulation and conducting health services pertaining to mothers and children activities in improving the health of the mother and community at large. I have a passion for maternal health and with the challenges affecting the women in child birth and care of their babies and children. I wish to use my knowledge to take part in putting in place health activities that can improve maternal and child health in my country Zambia.

Chinyama Cheelo from Zambia, background in Nursing and Midwifery. She studied the core course of the Master in International Health in 2015-2016 with a scholarship from the KIT Scholarship Fund.

I have been working in the health sector since my graduation from the College of Dentistry. I have started my journey from the Tahrir Square. The place that has changed my life like many other Egyptians. Soon after finishing my internship in late 2010, the Egyptian Revolution broke out. During this I have worked in civil hospitals at Tahrir Square. Its members soon launched the Tahrir Doctor Society.

An NGO with the objective of providing emergency response at turbulent places and promoting public health. This experience made me realize the extent to which public health in Egypt required improvements.

So I started working for AHED, the leading association in health development in Egypt. This motivated me to seek advanced studies in Public Health at a reputable institution to perfect my knowledge in the expertise. So I applied for a master in public health at the distinguished Royal Tropical Institute.

This Masters programme will enhance my knowledge and skills in this field and allow me to play a more active role in promoting public health in Egypt.

Muhamad Al-Zawawy from Cairo, Egypt, background in Dentistry. He studied the Master in Public Health with a partial scholarship from KIT Scholarship Fund and a scholarship from the Lutfia Rabbani Foundation.

My name is Ruth Kanyiru and I come from Kenya. I have a background in Nursing.Having worked in hospitals as a nurse I felt a growing interest and desire for helping a large number of people with more emphasis for prevention and primary care rather than tertiary care.

I have worked as coordinator for counseling and testing services in Central province for a period of two years before joining the national level. Here I was tasked in coordinating post exposure prophylaxis in all the government hospitals in the country. In addition I have been working closely with the MARPs (most at risk population) program which deals with HIV control among MSM, community sex workers.

My first introduction to international public health arena came during my volunteer work for polio eradication initiative in (Ethiopia, Ghana and Cameroon) it fascinated me as I saw the range of problems that public health professionals were trying to solve in innovative ways. This one was an eye opener to the issues faced in health care today.

The area I plan to major in is nutrition. The burden of maternal mortality extends far beyond the physical and mental health implications. The prevalence of communicable disease in Kenya is a major factor in determining health outcomes. Maternal and child health are my passion. Hence capacity building of health workers in preventive medicine like nutrition, hand-washing and vaccination will be my main priority. Especially in the arid areas of my country like the rift valley, Nairobi and Eastern provinces where mothers and children are dying due to hunger like in Turkana and Marsabit, while others in the capital are over nourished too.

Ruth Kanyiru from Kenya, background in Nursing. She will start the Master in International Health in 2015-2016 with a scholarship from the KIT Scholarship Fund.