Historically, global health interventions have reflected the global power structure—Western designed, male-led, top-down responses to acute disease outbreaks offering only incremental improvements to health systems. Global health leaders are rarely representative of the populations they serve, nor diverse in academic or professional discipline. As a result, the design of health interventions often overlook the perspective of those being served. Meanwhile, the health workforce lacks needed capacities such as logistics, finance, and communications.
Global Health Corps (GHC) strives for a more bottom-up health system championed by a network of new leaders who strive to strengthen and transform health systems through a systems approach to inspecting and disrupting the status quo. GHC recruits diverse young professionals and places them into existing health organizations and government agencies in East and Southern Africa and the United States to address current capacity gaps. Nearly 900 fellows have completed the program at more than 100 health organizations and government ministries.
GHC’s unique ‘co-fellow’ model pairs a national and an international fellow to promote cross-cultural collaboration and ensure inclusion of diverse perspectives and approaches. The GHC model cultivates non-traditional talent in the field of global health and builds a close -knit network of more systems-minded, cross-culturally competent, and resilient leaders for the future.
Global health leaders are rarely representative of the populations they serve, nor diverse in academic or professional discipline, creating a top-down power structure that falls short at the systems level.
GHC’s unique ‘co-fellow’ model pairs a national and international fellow in each country to promote cross-cultural collaboration to advance health equity around the world.
Barbara Pierce Bush launched Global Health Corps after working at the South African Red Cross hospital and with UNICEF in Botswana.
95 percent of Global Health Corps alumni continue to work in global health or related fields, and 83 percent hold mid- or senior-level positions.
A new breed of leaders with diverse backgrounds and skill sets are able to recognize the complex factors that comprise health systems and collaborate to transform them.
GHC will soon have a global network of over 1,000 individuals, a critical mass with collective potential. Tailored alumni programming can further equip these emerging leaders to leapfrog into leadership roles and drive more equitable health systems.
Barbara Pierce Bush traveled to East Africa in 2003 with her parents and was confronted with the overwhelming human toll of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. In Uganda, she witnessed thousands waiting for anti-retroviral treatments that were readily available in other parts of the world. She returned home determined to focus on global health and soon after graduating college, she worked at the South African Red Cross hospital and with UNICEF in Botswana. Barbara founded Global Health Corps with her sister and four friends in 2009, driven by the belief that health is a human right and that we need a new generation of leaders to make that right a reality. Barbara is now Board Chair of GHC, having served as CEO until January 2018. Barbara is a Draper Richards Kaplan Social Entrepreneur and an Echoing Green Fellow. She has been named one of Goldman Sachs’ 100 Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs and one of Fast Company's 100 Most Creative People in Business. Her book Sisters First, co-authored with her sister Jenna Bush Hager, was number one on the New York Times best seller list.