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Ghanaian Named Among 10 Finalists For CNN Hero Of The Year; He Needs Your Vote Now | General News

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A Ghanaian healthcare professional who’s currently pursuing his Master’s in Business Creation at the University of Utah in the United States, Osei Boateng, has been shortlisted among ten finalists for this year’s CNN’s Hero of the Year award.

Osei Boateng is the only African among this year’s finalists.

As the CEO of a non-profit organization known as OKB Hope Foundation based in Ghana, he uses a mobile van to render primary and preventative healthcare services to rural folks who cannot access health facilities out of their reach and are also unable to pay for such services.

He has converted a van into a mobile healthcare clinic that resembles a doctor’s office. The van has solar panels that the team relies on in communities that have no access to electricity. The van largely operates in the Ashanti Region but has also rendered its free services in parts of Greater Accra, Eastern and Central Regions.

“We go to rural and underserved communities to provide them with primary and preventative healthcare. They get to see a doctor, they get their labs done, they get medications, and they’re out of there,” Osei told US-based KSL TV.

According to Boateng, his initiative was motivated by the fact that people in his hometown of Bomfa-Achiase in the Ashanti Region, like his grandmother and aunt, had to travel for several kilometres for medical care.

He said, on average, people walk 17-24 kilometres to visit a clinic.

“Even if they got there, there’s no guarantee that they will see a doctor,” an experience that took the lives of some of his family members.

“If we could have gotten the care at an earlier time, or even seen the healthcare provider, they could’ve prevented that,” he said.

“It wasn’t a disease they should have died of, so that’s why I’m trying to get the van to these communities.”

Osei Boateng told Myjonline.com that any vote for him towards the ultimate price would be a critical contribution to healthcare for many rural folks in Ghana.

He hopes to earn revenue and a platform for his initiative by winning the CNN Hero of the Year.

“Supporting us in winning this award is not just a vote; it’s a vital contribution to the urgent cause of delivering timely healthcare to rural and underserved communities. Your involvement is instrumental, as every delay in reaching these individuals with healthcare could mean someone paying with their life. Your support can make a profound difference in ensuring swift and life-saving interventions for those who need it the most.”

“It’s really important for me to get this particular support to expand the work I’m doing because right now we don’t have any significant support,” he said.

“Securing this award will be a catalyst for obtaining the necessary resources to broaden our efforts. Our aim is to bring timely healthcare not just to my community, but also to the doorsteps of additional rural and underserved communities, fostering a more widespread impact” Osei Boateng told Myjoyonline.com.

If he wins, he earns $100,000.

“All of the professors, my preceptors, colleagues, they are all supportive of the work I’m doing,” Boateng said.

You can vote for Boateng by clicking here every day until December 5, 2023. The winner will be announced on December 10.

More about Osei Boateng

Having worked at the New York Presbyterian Hospital and Henry Ford Health System, Osei Boateng has more than five years of experience in hospital administration and operations.

In addition to his professional endeavours, Osei is the founder of the OKB Hope Foundation, a nonprofit organization that is deeply committed to bringing healthcare services to remote and underserved communities in Ghana.

Osei graduated from Kumasi Anglican Senior High School and holds a Bachelor of Science in Human Biology and Society, with minors in business and gerontology, and a Master’s in Healthcare Administration from Cornell University.

About the award

The CNN Hero of the Year honours individuals who make extraordinary contributions to humanitarian aid and make a difference in their communities.

The programme was started in 2007 and has been hosted by Anderson Cooper and Kelly Ripa Since 2016.

Honorees are introduced during the fall of each year and the audience is encouraged to vote online for the CNN Hero of the Year.

Ten recipients are honoured and each receives US$10,000. The top recipient is chosen as the CNN Hero of the Year and receives an additional US$100,000 to continue their work.

During the broadcast celebrating their achievements, the honorees are introduced by celebrities who actively support their charity work.

To celebrate the 10th anniversary, the 2016 edition had an additional segment where five previous Hero of the Year winners were chosen as candidates for the Superhero of the Year award, which was decided with an online poll.

Source: Ebenezer Afanyi Dadzie



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