Our Story

The word “Tiba” comes from the heart of the word “Matibabu”, which means treatment in Swahili, and the stories of Tiba and Matibabu Foundation Kenya (MFK) are also inextricably connected.

Dan standing in front of joyful students

Matibabu Foundation, our first and closest partnership, was founded in 2004 by Daniel Ogola, together with Dr. Gail Wagner.

At just 7 years old, Daniel lost his two-month-old brother to a treatable case of malaria. Fueled by his loss, he spent any money he received from friends and family, distributing medications to those in need. From a young age, he understood that healthcare was not just essential, but had to be accessible. After spending his early adulthood years building and running a community-based organization in Kibera, the largest slum settlement of Africa, Dan yearned to give back to his own rural community in Western Siaya.



As chance would have it, Dan was introduced to Dr. Gail Wagner, an American oncologist visiting her daughter who was studying in Kibera, who offered her support to bring Dan’s vision to life. The following year, Gail returned with seven additional doctors that served over 5,000 patients in medical camps. That year, Gail founded a US 501(c)(3) organization to support medical missions and international fundraising efforts and Dan founded Matibabu, a Kenyan based NGO, to facilitate local operations in 2005.

Inspired by the impact of their programs, they were approached by Indigenous elders to build a hospital to serve the area’s 250,000 residents in a more sustainable way. The local community would provide the land if Tiba would provide the funding for construction of a hospital. Thanks to Matibabu’s strong Kenyan community and the generosity of Tiba’s donors and advocates, Matibabu now has outpatient clinics with X-Ray, ultrasound, optometry, dentistry, community health programs and a level-4 community hospital with 75 beds and a surgical suite. It serves over 48,000 patients annually.

Dr Gail Wagner with patient.

Matibabu Partnership Major Accomplishments

Developing the Partnership

2004 Annual medical camps start
2004 and 2005 Founded Matibabu & Tiba Foundations, community health programs
2006 First major grant from USAID New Partnership Grant

Laying the foundation for quality care

2012 Maternal/Child Ward (24 beds) on land donated by the local community
2014 Ugunja Clinic (Optometry, Dental, Xray & Ultrasound)
2014 Matibabu College of Health Sciences Founded
2019 Inpatient Ward (52 beds)

Expanding to other areas

2021 Telehealth program to support outlying clinics with medical conferencing and US partners
2021 Ultrasound outreach to every pregnant woman far from medical services
2021 Cervical Cancer Awareness Campaign in 14 counties of Western Kenya to impact 1M Women
2022 Cervical Cancer projects with the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
2022 Launch of Boda Girls- Women’s Health, Education, and Livelihood Program

Serving patients and sustaining the organization

2013 Kenyan National Health Insurance rebates begin
2022 Operating Theatre & ICU (Surgery is reimbursed by national health insurance)
2023 Mortuary (a social enterprise and social services for widows)
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