Capacity Statement for Ngongongare Research Station
The National Institute for Medical Research (NIMR), under its Traditional Medicine Research and Development Center (TMRDC) owns an up-country research station in Arusha region (which is around 600 km away from the Dar Es Salaam-based TMRDC head-offices). The station is located at Ngongongare village within Arumeru district. The station was formed in year 2008, following the wind-up of a collaborative research and development project that was named ‘conservation and valorization of phytogenic resources and traditional knowledge in Tanzania’. The project was a partnership between NIMR and two other Italian NGOs called ‘Cooperazione Italiana Nord Sud (CINS) and ‘Associazione Africa Futura (AAF). The main purpose of the ended project was to add value to local medicinal natural products and their resources and safeguarding biodiversity of Tanzania through the creation of experimental facilities designed to provide research and development and testing sites for innovative technologies, including (but not limited to) environment protection and preservation.
Located at an altitude of 1,380M above sea level and occupying an area of 25,906.4 square meters (about 6.4 acres), the station is equipped with a phytochemistry laboratory with facilities for grinding, soaking, extraction and fractionation of medicinal plants. It also has a dispensary (currently not in use) equipped with basic facilities for diagnosis and treatment of common tropical diseases like malaria. There are also three hostels with a total of seven self-contained rooms. There are four residential houses and an administrative office.
The station is currently manned by three employees i.e. a research officer (with specialties in drug discovery, traditional medicine and zoonotic diseases); a human resource officer and a driver. However, in the light of ONE NIMR philosophy, other NIMR employees, particularly scientists from other research stations and centers do visit and work in the station’s laboratory, thus enlarging the scope of the station’s human resource capacity.