From Petworth to Malawi, using technology to deliver high-quality healthcare

by Roshani Kothari

I moved to Petworth in 2007, long before there was a Yes! Organic Market in the neighborhood and all the restaurants and stores along Upshur Street. It has been great to see the neighborhood evolve over time and connect with neighbors who are working on inspiring initiatives locally and globally.  

I would like to share with you one of the initiatives I am working on. In February 2016, I started working as a Communications & Development Director at D-tree International, a nonprofit organization that empowers frontline health workers through digital innovation. D-tree stands for “Decision tree” and is based on our core work of building decision support tools that run on mobile devices. These decision trees are medical protocols that guide health workers through a series of questions that ultimately lead to a diagnosis and treatment. 

D-tree's vision is a world where every person, no matter where they are, has access to high-quality healthcare. We do this by developing decision support systems that help health workers correctly diagnose, treat and counsel clients.  

Currently, I am focusing on a new crowdfunding campaign, Saving Lives in Malawi Using Digital Innovation, and I invite you to contribute to help us deliver this needed technology.

I traveled to Malawi in April 2016 and was able to see the challenges they face first-hand. We traveled a long distance along dirt roads to visit community health workers who play a critical role in saving children’s lives as there are no doctors or health facilities in rural areas. You can learn more from a blog post I worked on that talks about how Tella Matias Uses the Mobile App to Save Lives

We are excited because we got a matching donation for this fundraising campaign, meaning all donations received by the end of the day today, August 17, will be matched up to a total amount of $1,500.  We have made great progress in achieving this goal in the last two days, but we still need your support. If you can, donate today. The fundraising campaign doesn't end for another month, and we're trying to raise $30,000 for the project.

If you work in the global health space, we would love to explore how we may be able to collaborate. Feel free to connect with me via email at and on Twitter at @roshani and @DtreeInt.

Resource Links
- Donate: Saving Lives in Malawi Using Digital Innovation
- Blog Post: Tella Matias Uses Mobile App to Save Lives in Malawi
- Program Information: Saving Children’s Lives in Malawi

Roshani Kothari is the Communications & Development Director for D-tree, managing communications and fundraising activities. She has extensive experience working with nonprofits and technology companies that focus on nonprofits. She is passionate about using technology for social change, and co-organizes NetSquared meetings in DC. She has international experience in Africa, Asia and Latin America. She worked as a Peace Corps Intern in Thailand; a Catholic Relief Services Fellow in El Salvador and studied abroad in Bolivia and Zimbabwe. She is fluent in Spanish, and at an intermediate level in French & Portuguese. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, photography, and gardening.