Our Story

Global Links was founded in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 1989 by three individuals who saw a way to connect useful surplus medical materials from US hospitals to the needs of public health systems in communities that lack resources.

We share our experience and technical knowledge with international and domestic partners, and educate our volunteers, donors and the community on issues of global health and environmental stewardship. Respect for all people and our planet guides our mission.

We collaborate with the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO), as well as with in-country Ministries of Health and the medical and administrative leadership of public health systems. These partnerships have allowed Global Links to acquire in-depth knowledge about the health conditions in the communities we serve, form collaborative relationships and develop valuable cultural competence.

Photo credit: Abram’s Nation

Global Links’ International Medical Aid Program has collaborated on health improvement projects, educational exchanges and medical studies in 15 Latin American and Caribbean countries over the past three decades.

Global Links serves our local community through three programs designed to work together to improve life in Western Pennsylvania: Medical Surplus Recovery Program, Community Engagement and Volunteer Program and Domestic Medical Aid (i.e. Community Partners Program).

In 1999, one of the three founding members, Kathleen Hower, became the organization’s Executive Director.  In 2013, the organization consolidated warehouse, volunteer, and administrative operations in a new headquarters to better accommodate our work with healthcare institutions throughout the Mid-Atlantic region.  In 2018 Global Links transitioned from a founder led organization to one led by Executive Director Angela Garcia, staff member since 2000.  In March of 2020, Global Links scaled up our Domestic Medical Aid Program to serve our local community during the pandemic crisis.