Partner with us to help patients travel to the United States for life-changing surgery.

The Matadi Project is a group of compassionate international partners working to help patients access medical treatments. We bring individuals in need of surgical care from regions such as Africa, Central America, Eastern Europe, South America, and Southeast Asia to the United States for medical treatment.

We are connecting patients to medical teams with cutting edge technologies that have potential to save lives. Our network gives people the opportunity to access a level of medical care that is not possible in their home country.

How The Network Works

Humanitarian Organizations – Partner organizations like the Mutombo Foundation work on the ground in rural locations including parts of Africa, Central America, Eastern Europe, South America and Southeast Asia, to help identify patients with life-changing diseases in need of surgical care. They act as the primary liaison between the patient and the Matadi Project, helping to manage unique hurdles in the country of origin.

Physicians – World class specialists in the United States donate their time and talent to the Matadi Project through the Osborne Head & Neck Foundation. Surgeons can make an international impact without ever leaving their country, existing medical practices or the local patients who need them. 

Travel Partners – Airlines who pledge support for the communities they serve provide miles to connect patients with medical teams in the United States. Nonprofit housing partners like the Ronald McDonald House, along with hotel chains, provide short term housing for the duration of a patient’s stay. Travel Partners also include donors, and other organizations working to secure transportation and housing for patients.

Join The Matadi Project

Be a part of a network of organizations helping patients with rare diseases from Africa, South America, and Southeast Asia access life-changing surgical care unavailable in their home countries.


When you sponsor a patient in need of surgery through the Matadi Project, you are saying “your life matters” to someone living in a developing country. Not only do they benefit from the life changing care your sponsorship provides, but so does their family and community.

2 Ways to Adopt-A-Patient

Major Philanthropic Supporter: Your contribution completes one Matadi Project from start to finish, including transportation, housing, and surgical care in the US, for a patient in need living in a developing country.

Community Pooling: Individual gifts, and the pooling of community resources together help fund the next Matadi Project.

Where Does My Support Go?

Your gift provides safe transportation, lodging, and surgical care for some of the worlds forgotten, and empowers a network of people to change a life. Each project covers the following expenses:

  • Local health promoter in patient’s country of origin and throughout the medical process
  • Transportation expenses from rural villages to the nearest major city for extraction to the United States, as well as lodging and meals while in the United States
  • Hospital fees, including overnight room and board, lab work and x-rays, operating room expenses and surgical supplies
  • Patient and family support including translators to monitor, schedule, escort and interpret for patients
  • Post-operative and ongoing care after the patient returns home

Matadi Petit Sela

The Matadi Project continues the legacy of Matadi Petit Sela, an 8 year old boy from the African country the Democratic Republic of the Congo, who lost his battle with a rare and complex facial tumor. His journey for treatment halfway around the world in the United States, was an immense coordinated effort between humanitarian organizations on the ground in Africa, government agencies, and medical and housing teams in the United States, with the goal of giving this little boy a chance at getting the medical care he needed.

Devastated by the loss of Matadi, partner organizations who made his travel and treatment possible, aim to expand the effort and provide greater access to Western medicine for others battling head and neck diseases in remote parts of the world. Matadi lives on through this critical work, and continues to inspire people around the globe.

Support the matadi project

Contact Osborne Head & Neck Foundation to learn how you can support this program as a donor, surgeon, or volunteer.