order of st john logoThe St John International team hosted celebrated social rights activist Archbishop Desmond Tutu at their offices in London to discuss the development work of the global health charity and the maternal and new born health work they are rolling out across Africa.

Archbishop Tutu who chaired South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which was established by Nelson Mandela, is now the Prior of St John South Africa and was made a member of St John in 1995 by HM The Queen.

desmond tutu image

Archbishop Desmond Tutu

The Archbishop’s packed London tour on behalf of St John, has involved a private audience with HM The Queen, yesterday at Buckingham Palace; a visit with St John International staff to discuss the growth of the global health charity and its new focus on international development programmes and a prominent role in the Order of St John Knights and Dames Investiture ceremony, conducted by HRH The Duke of Gloucester who is the Grand Prior of The Order of St John.

Tutu is advocating for the new St John International Mother and Child Programme which aims to reach over 50, 000 people in the next three years in the five Sub-Saharan African countries of Kenya, Malawi, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe to improve the still appalling maternal and new born mortality rates in these regions. Through adding his voice in support of St John’s new Mother and Child Programme on this visit, Tutu hopes that more people will support the international charity in their efforts to improve maternal and newborn mortality rates in sub-Saharan Africa – a region which still accounts for 56 per cent of global maternal deaths.

Speaking at the St John International offices the Archbishop said; “I passionately support the work of St John and their unique community volunteer led approach towards improving community health around the world and addressing maternal and new born health in Africa through the new Mother and Child Programme.

“St John’s model of volunteer- led health care ensures sustainability and improved services and education for generations to come. Without healthy mothers and babies, communities cannot flourish and develop so investment in this area of health care is absolutely vital.”

For more information contact:
St John International / London / EC1M 6BB
E: / T: +44 (0) 207 553 9312 /


Image reproduced by kind permission of Peter Van Den Berg.