A non-governmental Organisation (NGO), Benjamin Olowojebutu Foundation (BOF), has concluded plans to perform 1,000 free surgeries on indigent women this year.

Its founder and Executive Director, Dr. Benjamin Olowojebutu, said 1,000 needy women suffering from various diseases such as fibroids, lipoma, breast lumps and hernia will benefit from the group’s nationwide medical outreaches this year.

The foundation, a dream driven by compassion to help indigent people suffering from various diseases, said its long-term goal is to change the healthcare space in the country with love and compassion. “Our constant pursuit of excellence, undying love and compassion for indigent women gave birth to the BOF. Our project for 2019 is called ‘Journey to 1,000 free surgeries.’ Our aim is to be able to help 1,000 indigent patients, suffering from fibroid, lipoma, breast lumps and hernia,” he said.

Last year, BOF was in Benue and Akwa Ibom states where it performed surgeries free of charge for hundreds of people, aside numerous lives touched in Lagos. Explaining why he focuses on women’s health, the maternal medicine specialist said: “Women are the greatest gifts to this world. When you touch women, you touch a nation.” The BOF founder described fibroids as non-cancerous abnormal growths that develop in or around the womb. While stating that fibroids are common among black  Africans, the surgeon emphasised that no drug can shrink fibroids in a woman.

He advised women to visit a doctor and get examined when they suspect they may be having fibroids, instead of resorting to herbal concoctions. “There are lots of fallacies and superstitious beliefs around fibroids that you can take medicines to shrink or pass it out from the anus; that is what is killing many women today. Some women have been taking herbal drugs for years and instead of shrinking the fibroid, it is getting bigger and bigger. We want to create awareness to let (indigent) people know that there is help for them,” he said.

If the NGO meets its 2019 target of 1,000 free surgeries, it will be an upgrade on the feat it achieved last year where 623 lives were touched across the six geo-political zones of the country. Having started the year with eight successful fibroid surgeries in Ikorodu in January, the foundation has moved its medical outreach to Cross River State, after which it will berth in Imo, Abia, Edo, Ondo and Rivers states. By July this year, BOF said it will embark on its first international medical outreach in Gambia and South Sudan.

The foundation also unveiled Monalisa Chinda Coker, a top Nollywood actress, as its ambassador last weekend. The popular actress expressed her readiness to support initiatives that seek to restore smiles on the faces of women, who are too poor to afford surgeries when in need.

“I am delighted to be a part of this wonderful initiative. If you don’t have the love of God, you can’t achieve whatever you want to achieve. I am just starting because I want everyone to support this so as to enlarge and expand the initiative to other areas and touch more lives. I will always make myself available. I will always be there; everywhere you want me to be,” she said.