Communities Health Africa Trust (CHAT) is CHASE Africa’s oldest family planning and healthcare partner. They have been operating the mobile clinic model since 2000, when they existed as the Mpala Community Trust, serving rural communities in Laikipia county with integrated primary healthcare and family planning services. In 2011, the Rift Valley Tree Trust decided to start funding CHAT alongside its tree-planting partners, and Communities Health and Sustainable Environment (CHASE Africa) was born.

CHAT works with marginalised communities who have limited access to healthcare, many of whom are semi-nomadic pastoralists. The roads in these areas can be very challenging, and CHAT uses a variety of means of transport to reach their clients. Sometimes the nurses will travel on the back of a motorbike, sometimes in a Land Rover, and when the going gets very tough, a team of camels is used to move the clinic.

In the 10 days before a clinic arrives, the team of Community Health Workers (CHWs) make every effort to publicise to the villages what health services will be available; going door to door, attending community gatherings and church services, and meeting with the local Chiefs.

CHAT now covers a wide area of Kenya including Laikipia, Samburu, Isiolo, Baringo, Marsabit counties, with parts of Nyeri, Meru, Tharaka, Kitui (Mwingi North), Kisii, Narok, Nairobi & Nakuru counties also covered.

Preparing the van for a clinic

A camel clinic on the move

Looking at different contraceptive methods at a day clinic