Important message about the COVID-19 Coronavirus

In an effort to care for all of our personnel, families, and mission around the world, EMI has been taking a number of steps in response to the progress of COVID-19.

Location-specific Crisis Management Teams remain in place to monitor COVID developments, inform, and care for EMI personnel. Decisions about official EMI travel (including project travel) domestically and internationally are being made on a case-by-case basis by Office Directors in locations concerned. EMI’s worldwide offices remain in varying states of closure with personnel working remotely or from home.

We continue to actively monitor the situation and will respond to new information affecting our worldwide ministry and teams. We view the COVID-19 Coronavirus as an opportunity to live out the gospel and our faith in Jesus through the ministry of EMI.

A visit to Nkhoma Hospital in Malawi with EMI

The Fader family took the initiative to bring EMI to Nkhoma Mission Hospital in April 2019 to develop a new master plan focused on “providing Christ-centered health care for all.” Dr. Tim Fader, serving as the temporary medical director with his wife Patti, had observed the success of a phased buildout of an EMI-developed master plan at the Kibuye Hope Hospital in Burundi, where their sons Caleb (Civil Engineer) and Jason (Assistant Medical Director and Surgeon) are coordinating the expansion effort. Jason’s number one lesson learned was “Obey the master plan”—to which his mom Patti countered, “Obey the Master’s Plan!”

  • Dr. Tim Fader and family
  • Nyathipa Mhango, Clinical Director of Maternity

Currently the clinical director of the maternity ward, Nyathipa Mhango began her medical career in an entry-level position at Nkhoma Hospital. With her warm demeanor and honest approach in communication, Nyathipa is the perfect leader for the maternity ward clinicians and nurses. Nkhoma’s maternity ward is severely under-sized for its patient population, with only six beds for delivery and no surgical theatre for C-sections. EMI’s master plan hopes to correct this with a new and expanded Maternity Ward.

  • Triage at Nkhoma Hospital
  • Nkhoma patients

Patients and their families converge at triage from the surrounding rural villages to deliver their babies, receive care for their children’s injuries, and to receive treatment for HIV. Here and in the long, exterior covered corridors that crisscross the campus, people await news of their family member. It is here that women bear down throughout labor. It is here that family guardians prepare food and wash laundry. The early morning chaos as nurses and physicians respond to waves of patients all happens here. In the midst of this daily bustle, the EMI team works diligently with hospital staff to help them envision and design a more convenient and comfortable space to provide Christ-centered health care for all.

  • Nkhoma EMI team at work
  • Site investigation notes

EMI volunteer Liz Wunderlich may not realize it, but she has eased the door open for another generation of female civil engineers. With over 30 years in the field, Liz has helped normalize the presence of women as engineers on construction sites, both in the US and internationally. In Malawi, Liz has worked alongside Kesleigh Massey identifying drainage, sewer and water distribution needs for the expanding hospital. 

Living in a single parent home in Limpopo, South Africa, Sidney Netshavhakololo prayed that God would bring meaning to his life. Through the generosity of his uncle, Sidney was able to learn English and complete a Diploma in Civil Engineering in Pretoria, SA. Searching for an internship online, Sidney discovered EMI and immediately applied to join the South Africa team where he hoped to learn more about engineering, but also to grow in his faith. His time with EMI led to his first trip outside of South Africa, where he joined Liz and Kesleigh on the Nkhoma Hospital Master Plan team.

  • Engineers Kesleigh, Sidney, and Liz at Nkhoma Hospital
  • Simon at the design table

In his low-key way, Simon Thorne built consensus for a hospital master plan with a phased buildout over the next ten years. Through meetings with hospital staff and management, his team identified a new maternity ward and surgery theater as the immediate needs. Since 2009, the Sydney-based architectural practice where he is partner has underwritten opportunities for staff to use their skills in Uganda, Tanzania, and Sri Lanka and to “experience God’s provision first-hand across many cultures.”