At Haradali, we believe that health is of dual importance. First, it is a human right in itself. Second, it is an indispensable “input”, making human beings more productive in the wealth creation process. Improved livelihoods, through simple, better, affordable and accessible products and services, contribute to improvements and sustenance of healthy lives. Healthier lives and improving livelihoods have a big part to play in enabling individual, as well as community, wellness. Wellness is not simply the sum of absence of disease and abundance of material goods. At the individual level, wellness embodies the whole spectrum of material and spiritual requirements of the whole person. At the community level, wellness means balancing the individual requirements with those necessary for the survival, development, and resilience of the community. When this rather imperfect balance is conducted in a manner that satisfies the individual and community needs of today, without sacrificing those of future generations, we call this a sustainable approach to health, wealth creation and wellness.
A community is a living, dynamic, system that “thinks” and “acts”. If a community were a human being, it would have a “brain” by which it would constantly seek to know “self” and “others”. It creates, stores and shares knowledge about itself and the “outside-the community” environment. The community has a mindset, a dynamic totality of history, values, culture, fears, and aspirations, which create a prism through which it looks at itself and its external environment, past, present and future. The community has a “heart”. Connections, co-operation, collaboration, compassion and concern for each other and for the community are interwoven in a matrix of love, forgiveness, and freedom that is cherished in many African communities. In some native languages spoken in Africa, this is called Ubuntu. The community has “hands” because it must work in order to produce smartly and consume responsibly.
A community that is static in thought and action is a community that is bound for misery, poverty, disease and extinction. A community has to move to the future, with a purpose, on two legs: a “leg” of health and a “leg” of wealth creation, linked within and to each other by a “bridge”. In a healthy and well-living community, prevention of disease, healthy lifestyles, promotion of rehabilitation and healing, should constitute the bigger part of health. Good quality, accessible and affordable curative health services in clinics and hospitals, when integrated with prevention constitute the other crucial element of sustainable healthcare delivery. In a healthy, well-living and prospering community, wealth creation has health as a critical input, and consists of wealth commonly held (community commons), as well as privately held (private property). The bridge is fortified with seven pillars, some of them tangible and others intangible: Talent; Science, Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship (SITE); Infrastructure, Logistics and Supplies; Finance; Partnerships and Institutions; Integrated Systems; and, Managing and Leading. The bridge serves as a two-way highway on which knowledge, skills and capital seamlessly move. If this bridge is to last, it has to allow access to all members of the community to use this common facility to improve health, and grow both private and common wealth. It also has to have glue to hold all the parts together. That glue is Ubuntu, the concern for each other and for community that simultaneously ensures meaning and purpose for self.