More than 100 Took the Challenge! Canadian doctors donate day's income and raise more than $60,000 to fight poverty in Africa

    TORONTO, Aug. 16 /CNW/ - More than 100 physicians and health care
professionals signed-up for Canadian Physicians for Aid & Relief's (CPAR's)
2nd Annual World Health Challenge and raised over $60,000 in support of
primary health and development in Africa.
    The initiative, held in honour of World Health Day on April 7th,
challenged physicians and health care professionals to donate all or part of a
day's income to fight poverty in rural Africa.
    This year, the event grabbed the attention of teams of nurses, family
physicians and social workers across Canada in cities including Toronto,
Vancouver, Ottawa and Calgary and successfully raised more than double of the
amount donated during last year's 1st Annual World Health Day Challenge.
    In two years, the World Health Day Challenge has increasingly garnered
the support of physicians, and a wide variety of health professionals ranging
from social workers, to nurses who believe that the global community has a
part to play in supporting health and development beyond the geographic
boundaries of their communities - especially in rural Africa.
    CPAR's primary health care work focuses on reducing the burden of HIV &
AIDS through community awareness programs, preventing the spread of common
diseases by increasing access to clean water and sanitation facilities,
promoting healthy pregnancies and educating communities about sexual and
reproductive health issues.
    CPAR's World Health Day Challenge is partly inspired by the efforts of
Dr. N. Kevin Wade, a Vancouver-based ophthalmologist who donated an entire day
of his medical service payment plans to CPAR in September 2002 and again in
September 2005.
    "When I saw CPAR's work in Africa first-hand and experienced the health
conditions in Blantyre, Malawi during a research project, I knew I wanted to
contribute to the cause," says Dr. Wade.
    "Personally, I think CPAR's World Health Day Challenge is an excellent
and practical way for Canadian physicians to make a commitment to the
developing world by 'Working a Day for African Development'," says
Toronto-based psychiatrist Dr. Donald Payne.

    CPAR works with local rural African communities to develop primary health
care, income generating, natural resource management and peace building
programs in support of a vision where 'health' is created and sustained by the
environmental, economic and social well-being of a community. Founded in 1984,
CPAR works in partnership with vulnerable communities and diverse
organizations to overcome poverty and build healthy communities in Ethiopia,
Tanzania, Uganda and Malawi.

    Each year on April 7th, the world celebrates World Health Day. On this
day around the globe, thousands of events mark the importance of health in
leading a productive life.

    For more information on CPAR's programs in Africa and the World Health
Day Challenge, visit:

For further information:

For further information: Media requiring more information: Roxane
Tracey, Communications Manager, CPAR, Email:, Web:, Tel: (416) 369-0865 ext. 26

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