Founded in 1957 as a leprosy relief organization in Würzburg, Germany, DAHW today is an independent non governmental organization supported by donors, volunteers and staff around the world. From the beginning, DAHW has been working to provide equal access to healthcare services to those who are especially vulnerable and to fight leprosy, tuberculosis and other poverty-related diseases that lead to marginalization, stigmatization and further consequences
DAHW is also active against Buruli Ulcer, Chagas' disease, Yaws, Lymphatic Filariasis, Schistosomiasis and other Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs).
DAHW supports medical and social relief programs as well as research conducted in the interests of improving prevention, diagnostics, therapy and medical-social rehabilitation. The organization promotes training of specialist personnel and community helpers, supplies medical equipment and other materials, performs active case detection, diagnostics and treatment of affected persons and provides information and community-based participatory approaches for preventing and reducing stigmatization.
54 employees work at the DAHW head office in Würzburg, assisted by another 150 employees in 17 regional offices worldwide. Additionally, DAHW globally partners with more than 800 organizations and institutions. DAHW is active in 21 countries in Latin America, East Africa, West Africa and Asia. The cooperation with Audiopedia focuses on spreading comprehensible health knowledge within marginalized populations in all DAHW countries.