What We Do

The Challenge

Ethiopia is the second most populous nation in Africa, and among the top three fastest growing economies in the world. Yet despite this outlook, the country had a tragic pediatric situation with 44,000 spina bifida and hydrocephalus pregnancies each year.

Spina bifida and hydrocephalus are neural tube defects (NTD’s) caused by a lack of folic acid in the mother’s diet. These NTD’s damage the spinal cord, brain and vital functions of the newly born and cause stillbirths, infant mortality and profound, life-long disability.

How We Work – Converting Hope Into Results

Advocating for early detection, education, and food fortification

We partner with the Ethiopian Ministry of Health and public health experts from around the world to present and implement a folic acid food fortification program that will address the neural tube defect challenge at its roots.

Expanding pediatric neurosurgery capacity to save more lives.

We partner with Ethiopian hospital administrators and neurosurgeons to create Centers of Excellence in pediatric neurosurgery to increase the number of lifesaving surgeries performed and save lives.

Raising aftercare standards to prevent future health problems.

We partner with medical professionals and other international NGO’s to give lectures and design medical training that focus on providing patient centered care teams so that every child has a chance to live a full and independent life.

Centers of Excellence in Pediatric Neurosurgery

Our Centers of Excellence aim to provide “timely, value based, patient centered and superior care” to spina bifida and hydrocephalus patients. Our goal is for each Center of Excellence to include cross-specialty collaboration where specialists practice together and provide “one-stop service” so that patients can have all needs addressed in one visit to the hospital.

Centers of Excellence in Pediatric Neurosurgery

Our Centers of Excellence aim to provide “timely, value based, patient centered and superior care” to spina bifida and hydrocephalus patients. Our goal is for each Center of Excellence to include cross-specialty collaboration where specialists practice together and provide “one-stop service” so that patients can have all needs addressed in one visit to the hospital.


Igniting Change, Reaching Further

We activate partnerships worldwide to give children with hydrocephalus and spina bifida the hope for a better future.

“At a time when international security is the focus of our country and the world, ReachAnother Foundation provides the soft diplomatic approach that supports respect and the sharing of knowledge and experience, to build a long-term foundation of trust and connection.”

Carolyn Esky

Bend, Volunteer

What are spina bifida and hydrocephalus?

Spina bifida and hydrocephalus are neural tube defects (NTDs), which are birth defects that affect a baby’s spine, spinal cord, or brain.

Normally, a fetus’ neural tube develops into their brain, spinal cord, and spinal column, but if a mother does not have sufficient folic acid in her diet during pregnancy the neural tube does not fully form or close completely.

Spina bifida, “open back,” occurs when the spine has failed to close properly during the first month of pregnancy. Surgery is needed to close the defect immediately after birth to prevent infection and preserve the existing function in the spinal nerves. Approximately 90% of babies born with spina bifida are also impacted by hydrocephalus, “water on the brain.”

Babies born with hydrocephalus suffer a fluid build up in their brain, which causes an enlarged head and, if untreated, will cause brain damage and death. Treatment of hydrocephalus consists of implanting a shunt to drain the excess fluid. When treated in a timely fashion, the overwhelming majority of these babies can go on to lead healthy lives.

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“It was incredible to be able to volunteer in the hospital as a medical student and watch as the life of a child with hydrocephalus was forever changed. But it also gave me the chance to realize that giving a life to one child also means helping that child's mother, father, family and loved ones. It provides the community with hope to know that someone cares and is willing to help.”

Lacey Menkin MD

Orlando, Florida Medical Student

We are committed to

Expanding pediatric neurosurgery capacity to save more lives

Expanding pediatric neurosurgery capacity to save more lives

Expanding pediatric neurosurgery capacity to save more lives

John Moseley, PHD

Board Member

John received his BS, MS and PhD degrees in Physics from Georgia Institute of Technology, and has received multiple awards for his research there, at SRI, and at UO. He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society and the AAAs, is listed in Who's Who in Frontier Science and Technology, in America, and in the World. He has participated at the National and International level in numerous scientific and educational committees and activities. At the local level, he has participated in a number of research, economic development, and arts related initiatives.

Dr. Moseley retired in 2006. He and his wife, Susan, live in Eugene, OR.
John has participated in visits to Ethiopia as a volunteer member of the ReachAnother Foundation team 2015 and 2017.

"My wife Susan and I first became interested in the work in Ethiopia through our friendship with Dick and Patricia. After attending a fund-raising dinner in Bend in 2012, my wife we hosted one in Eugene, and became increasingly involved, so when I was asked to join the Board in 2014 I was more than happy to do so. Participating with the team in Ethiopia in 2015 helped me to realize the effectiveness and potential of this effort, and I have appreciated the opportunity to help ever since."

We’re in it for the babies. For the families.
For Ethiopia. For the world.
We are dedicated to this work, our human family and to one another.
We are united to transform.
We are a catalyst for change.