Salone News

Introducing Garnem-Torbay, Head of the US Medical Mission to Sierra Leone

2 November 2018 at 21:04 | 1943 views


Josephine Garnem-Torbay born and raised in Bo City, Sierra Leone, is the daughter of the late Kalil Garnem and Mrs. Umu Garnem. She attended Queen of the Rosary School (QRS), Bo and Christ the King College before emigrating to the United States.

Josephine presently serves as International Medical Corps’ Strategic Outreach and Partnership Coordinator. She served as chairwoman for the Montgomery County (MC) Executive’s African Affairs Advisory Group (AAAG) from 2011 to 2013. She presently serves as an AAAG Executive and leads its Health Working Group. She is founder of Immigrant Community Services, serves on the board for AWCAA and alternately represents AAAG on MC’s DHHS Leadership Institute for Equity and Elimination of Health Disparities (LIEED) advisory group.

Garnem has over 15 years’ experience in humanitarian assistance. She worked at International Medical Corps in 1999 when her native country, Sierra Leone, endured a brutal civil war. She joined a team that helped save thousands of lives and build and sustain one of the country’s most successful health care programs, where survivors of the conflict were offered basic health care and post-traumatic stress During her time with International Medical Corps (IMC), Garnem raised over $45 million per year in In-kind donations (the largest ever since its inception in 1984) tailored to the specific needs of its programs worldwide, providing a lifeline to the under-served and vulnerable populations in over 30 countries on four continents. Garnem also created and sustained guidelines and training manuals and modules on the Securing and Management of Gifts in Kind Donations.

She served as an Executive Board Member of the Partnership for Quality Medical Donations (PQMD), a consortium of major US pharmaceutical companies and non-profit organizations. Garnem has a long history of serving disenfranchised communities counseling, child soldiers and young women could receive complex surgical interventions and ex-combatants and victims learned to reconcile and live together, setting the country on a path to peace. In 2002, Garnem deployed to Pakistan and Afghanistan with International Medical Corps to assist in the efforts of rebuilding a country devastated by decades of fighting.

Garnem is a passionate humanitarian, a strategic thinker and an avid community mobilizer, who never stops fighting for the under-served. She lives in Maryland with her husband and three children.