“Africa bears a disproportionately higher rate of disease, with a lower number of well-trained scientists who can develop sustainable solutions for the health systems in Africa”. That is why, on November 23rd 2022, the Center for Research in Therapeutic Sciences (CREATES) officially launched the MoBility for Research and African Integration through Health Sciences (BRAINS).
CREATES is a consortium of academic and research institutes whose overall objective is to conduct and promote cutting-edge innovative and relevant research in Therapeutic Sciences and medical genetics that address key health issues related to diseases of major public health importance in Kenya and the East African Region. They intend to become a Centre of Excellence in their fields of specialization by developing an accessible platform of knowledge generation, sharing and training. The BRAINS program is designed to do exactly that for African scientists and researchers.
Speaking during the launch, Prof. Faith Osier passionately highlighted the need for the program. Despite the high rate of disease in the continent, there is low representation of the African scientist. What the program seeks to do is remove the inter-county and inter-disciplinary boundaries that are proving to be obstacles to capacity building efforts.
“To achieve scientific and technological independence, we have to remove the boundaries across Africa and work as one team across disciplines to break that divide” – Dr. Bernhards Ogutu, Director – CREATES.
The mobility program will be centered on three key pillars in health sciences:
- Data acquisition using contemporary high-throughput technologies
- Analysis of ‘big data’
- Hands-on disease-specific experience
They hope to bring professionals from all industries into the program, a crossover of students from different disciplines. What the future needs for innovation is people from different backgrounds bringing the knowledge they have. In line with the theme of collaboration, CREATES partnered with universities worldwide to bring the program to life. These universities are; University Hassan II of Casablanca, University of Ghana, University Tunis El Manar, Université Polytechnique Hauts-de-France, Stellenbosch University, and Université Des Sciences De La Santé De Libreville. Representatives from all the universities were present to celebrate this momentous launch.
Strathmore University is the lead partner institution for the CREATES consortium. We strive to be at the forefront of research and innovation programs that have a positive impact on society. The BRAINS program aims to increase the employability of students while improving the quality of higher education in Africa and its relevance to Africa’s development vision. It also hopes to strengthen the modernization and internationalization of African higher education institutions and promote the development of the continent’s higher education and research spaces.
To learn more about the MoBility for Research and African Integration through Health Sciences (BRAINS) program, visit: brains.strathmore.edu
This article was written by Celia Kinuthia.
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