Charles (Charlie) Petro

Year Joined MKLM: 2015
Country: Tanzania
City: Mwanza
Focus: Education, Health
Project(s): Mabatini Public Health Centre, Archdiocese of Mwanza Communications
People Served: Students, people of Mabatini

Project Goal(s):

Current Ministry:

Charlie is Operations Manager for the Mabatini Public Health Centre, and he concentrates his efforts in planning and budgeting. In planning, Charlie works with the Centre’s coordinator to plan new programs, monitor their implementation, evaluate their success, and help the staff make improvements. At Mabatini, Charlie also oversees expenses and fundraising in the budget department, and maintains communication with major donors.

The Mabatini Public Health Centre serves one of the most densely-populated and lowest-income neighborhoods in Mwanza, Tanzania’s second-largest city. In 2016, the Centre served the community with nine projects focused on three key components to improving public health in the community:

  • community-based health education
  • school-based health education
  • community-based rehabilitation

All projects undertaken by the Centre focus on educating the local population. Parents are taught therapeutic exercises to perform with their children. Families are taught how to use medicine and grow it near their homes. Patients for dental clinics receive care, but also receive instruction on proper oral hygiene. The perspective of the office is not to provide care alone, but to empower the neighbors to take control of their own preventative care.

Personal Data:

Charlie is originally from Pittsburgh, PA, lived in Florida, and is most recently from Middleton, WI. He has a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of South Florida. Charlie worked as an Editorial Director in educational publishing and was a teacher. He also worked in ministry with the Christian Brothers at a Fe y Alegria school in Peru. Charlie has been active with Catholic Worker, Knights of Columbus, religious education, teaching English as a Second Language, and RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults.)

He and his wife, Lupe (also a Maryknoll lay missioner), have two young children, Charles and Veronica. They all live in Tanzania.