23 years ago, EMERGENCY opened a First Aid Post in Afghanistan.
There are four girls, a little boy and a woman. The man accompanying them says that their home was struck during a counter-Taliban offensive, most likely an attempt to push back the group, which have been edging closer to the city for days.
Sat on benches outside the A&E Department are another child and an infant, covered by the dust into which their home has been transformed. Fortunately they are unhurt, but frightened and hungry. For days their family has not been able to find enough food.
A few hours later at 5am, 26 patients arrive together, all suffering from firearm or shrapnel wounds. It took them many hours to get to our hospital.
In Lashkar-Gah, Afghanistan, each day involves a constant succession of arriving patients. We are here to guarantee treatment to whoever needs it. But the hope remains that the entire population of Helmand can return back to their homes, without risk of injury from a projectile, bomb or mine – without risk of becoming yet more ‘collateral damage’.
Find out more about our work across Afghanistan here.