Milestones: 2023

Annual Report


In 1998, Adara was founded on a simple belief: that each and every person deserves access to quality health, education and other essential services, no matter where they live. We believe that we can use the power of business and partnership to make this possible. As I reflect on 2023, I’m proud of our continued progress in bringing this vision to life, building on the work and learnings of our first 26 years.

Throughout the past year, we’ve increased our impact, expanded our team, and scaled our work to new heights. We’ve refined our models of excellence – AdaraNewborn, AdaraRemote and AdaraBusiness – to maximise their reach and replicability. We’ve shown that our work is bigger than us and highlighted the power of sharing our knowledge to create change on a global scale.

And during this period of growth, we’ve remained connected to the individual stories behind this impact. Like that of Esther who left Kiwoko Hospital in Uganda with healthy twins, despite initially fearing for their survival. Or that of Raju who is receiving a quality education in Humla, Nepal thanks to Adara’s work with his local school. Behind every statistic and every milestone in this report are stories of impact just like those of Esther and Raju’s. Every single one matters. They are at the centre of our work. Always.

These stories also show us the size of the need that still exists. They remind us that we still have so much work to do. But we have the plan, the expertise and the team to keep pushing forward.

As we chart this journey, we know we’re not doing it on our own. We’re grateful for our partners, supporters and staff worldwide who have joined us on our mission. Thank you for standing with us, now and into the future. Thank you for helping us reach 50,000 people in 2023 and countless others through knowledge sharing.

Please read on to learn more about how we brought our vision closer to reality in 2023.

With gratitude,

Madeline Vaughan
Chief Executive Officer

Madeline Vaughan Chief Executive Officer

Our models of excellence

We have developed three models of excellence in our mission to deliver quality health and education services to communities living in poverty. Now we are sharing and expanding these models to impact more lives.

Adara Newborn


AdaraNewborn is our model of care, with the power to halve newborn deaths and stillbirths across 10 facilities in Uganda over the next decade. It will do this by supporting women and newborns from pregnancy through to their return home after birth.

It provides health workers with training and mentorship; strengthens leadership and governance in the health system; equips facilities with the tools to succeed; and focuses on quality improvement systems. This creates sustainable systems change, saving lives now and reducing maternal and newborn deaths into the future.

Adara Remote


AdaraRemote is our holistic community development model, which aims to improve access to essential services for people living in remote areas. Implemented in two isolated districts in Nepal, it spans five pillars of service delivery: education, child protection, youth development, health and community resilience.

Together these pillars can support remote communities to truly thrive. This model has been developed in collaboration with governments, local organisations and communities.

Adara Business


AdaraBusiness is our innovative business-for-purpose model. Through this model, the profits of our boutique corporate advisory business, Adara Partners, fund our core support and administration costs.

This allows 100% of donations from our supporters to go directly to’ =project-related costs. Adara Partners is possible thanks to a panel of 16 of the most senior members of the Australian financial services industry. These Panel Members use their investment banking skills and expertise to provide advice and wise counsel to clients. Panel Members work for Adara Partners without recompense to support our work with communities living in poverty in some of the world’s remotest places.


2023 at a glance


2023 at a glance

More Than 50,000+



people reached, as well as countless others through knowledge sharing

US $4.5 million donated to our work

US $4.5

million donated to our work

100% of administration and core support


of administration and core support costs paid for by the Adara businesses

Staff, Volunteers and Secondees


staff, volunteers and secondees – directly and through our community partners



Stories of change

Stories of change

Inpatient Newborn Care at Kiwoko Hospital


When Esther arrived at her local health clinic to give birth to twins while only six months pregnant, she found a complete lack of equipment to care for premature babies. A health worker referred her immediately to Kiwoko Hospital.

Throughout Uganda, Kiwoko is known for the quality care it provides to women and newborns. With a country-leading neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), it’s a source of hope for countless families. “I’d never heard about the NICU at Kiwoko Hospital,” Esther says. But soon she would become closely acquainted with the hospital and its dedicated staff.

After arriving at Kiwoko, Esther safely gave birth. Her twins were then admitted to the NICU. “This NICU has greatly helped us,” Esther says. “I was so excited when I was admitted here. It meant my babies could be put in incubators to mature. I wanted my babies to survive.”

And not only did Esther’s twins survive but now they’re thriving.

“My babies are so fine now,” Esther says. “They do not have any problem.”

Through AdaraNewborn, we’re not only sustaining Kiwoko as a Centre of Excellence but also strengthening maternal and newborn care in surrounding facilities. This will uplift the quality of care across Uganda, creating more stories of hope like that of Esther and her babies.

Raju’s Story: a Quality Education Close to Home


Raju was only seven years old when his parents sent him from their home in Syada, Humla to a monastery in Kathmandu.

“We had no choice,” his father says. “Our local school was not functioning and we could not afford to send him to a private boarding school. So, for his own better future, we had to send him away.”

This is a common reality for people living in remote areas such as Humla. A lack of resources and teachers means many schools simply can’t function. As a result, children from Syada are displaced across Humla and Nepal more widely. Many end up in poorly run children’s homes, in child labour or are forced out of the education system altogether.

To address this challenge, we began expanding our work into three new villages, including two schools, in Humla. By implementing our AdaraRemote Education Model, we are working to lift education standards at these schools. This includes the school in Raju’s village of Syada. We have upgraded infrastructure and facilities, supported teachers, delivered essential resources and provided middays meals. The best part? Raju has returned home to Humla and is attending the improved Syada School.

“We wouldn’t have sent our son away from us if the school was how it is now,” Raju’s mother explains. “But we are now glad that he is with us.”

Like Raju’s parents, many other families have brought their children back home and to Syada School. Now these children are connected to their families and culture while having the opportunity to receive a quality education.

Knowledge Sharing

We believe the knowledge created through our programmes is not ours to keep. We strive to scale the impact of our programmes by sharing the data, research conclusions, training packages and lessons learned. We are taking our very best ideas and our biggest mistakes, distilled from more than two decades of working in the field, and sharing them locally, nationally and globally.

In 2023, we launched the Adara Knowledge Centre. This is an online platform to share our learnings and resources with others. The resources span our Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (MNCH) and Remote Community Development programmes. They include our Hospital to Home package, our breastfeeding guidelines of care and the latest research on our work. We hope these resources will inspire and guide many others as they create change in their own communities.

Visit the Adara Knowledge Centre:

Read our full report

That’s just a fraction of what we achieved together in 2023. Download our full Operations Report for more updates on milestones, stories of impact, celebrations of our partners and supporters, and financials.