AMERICAN REFUGEE COMMITTEE: Welcome to Asili

Asili Clinic

Democratic Republic of Congo is where ARC's very first social enterprise – Asili – is taking root.

Asili takes business principles and applies them to some of the toughest problems in Congo. Problems like access to quality healthcare, clean water, and a fruitful livelihood. Asili offers world-class services, at prices that Congolese families can afford. Designed hand-in-hand with Congolese mothers and communities, patients have remarked on how – after decades of war – Asili stands out as a beacon of hope and of change.

So what does world-class quality mean? At the Asili health clinics, it means always having medicines stocked in the pharmacy. It means warm, welcoming staff. It means an accurate diagnosis and follow-up. It means an environment where all are treated fairly, with respect and kindness.

It also means thinking about the experience for all of your patients – including kids.

That’s why one day - doing the doable - our team created a children’s corner for the littlest Asili patients. Now, in the corner of each clinic are small tables with toys and books for kids to play with while they wait to be seen, or while their parents are in the consultation rooms.

Along with the toys are coloring pages with flowers, elephants, and rainbows. After they’re done, we proudly display the artwork on the clinic wall.

A boy named Baraka came to the clinic the other day with his mom. He waited patiently for her in the reception area, sitting quietly with his hands in his lap. But head nurse Adrienne wondered whether he might want to have a little fun instead.

“Would you like to color?” she asked. Baraka nodded. So Adrienne gave him a coloring page. He grabbed a handful of crayons and got to work. And not only did Baraka enjoy coloring that day – he’s been back to the clinic every day since, asking for another sheet to call his own. It’s become his favorite thing to do.

It’s small moments like this that can make all the difference to a child’s day, even the way they see what’s possible. That make Asili clinics a place where everyone can be comfortable, where all are welcome.

With this simple addition, children who visit Asili clinics can now have fun and relax, even for a while. And that’s what doing the doable is all about.

Photo Credit: 
ARC