another milestone in our path to medicine, human rights and equality.
The holidays are over and 2019 is in full swing. Let’s take a moment to look back at what happened in 2018 and what we managed to achieve thanks to your support.
New year, same old war
2018 began in Kabul with a large explosion near the former Ministry of Interior Affairs. After this, 131 wounded people, a huge number, arrived at EMERGENCY’s hospital. Our staff had to work tirelessly to keep up with the flow of patients.
Happy anniversary, Rehabilitation Centre!
Our Rehabilitation and Social Reintegration Centre in Sulaymaniyah, Iraq, specialises in physiotherapy, the production of prostheses for disabled and injured patients, and professional training for former patients. In 2018 it celebrated 20 years of work.
Investing in training for local staff
27 doctors from Kabul, Panjshir and Lashkar-Gah take exams in surgery, paediatrics and gynaecology. We invest in training for local staff in all of our projects, to bring new expertise to each country’s healthcare system and lay foundations for the future.
The women at the Salam Centre
Nurses, team leaders, ward sisters, administrators, cooks and assistants. When you enter the Salam Centre in Khartoum, it hits you straight away how many women work there. And it’s thanks to all of them that we’ve been able to provide excellent treatment in Sudan for 10 years now.
The madness of military spending
Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) research is released, showing that global military spending is out of control. There is so much else we could be doing with that money. Like treating people, for example. One year of treating war victims in Afghanistan costs us just three and a half hours’ worth of Italian military spending.
Italy’s invisible countryside
Sacko Soumayla, a 29-year-old man from Mali, was killed about 15km from Rosarno, where he worked all day for a few euros, while looking for old sheet metal to build a shelter for some fellow labourers. Capitanata, Basilicata, Piana di Gioia Tauro, Sibari, Cassibile, Fascia Trasformata and Castel Volturno are some of the places we’ve been working since 2011 to provide treatment for victims of poverty and exploitation. They’re all remote areas, often hidden away in the countryside, but well known to humanitarian and social workers.
After five years, we’ve finished our work at the Complexe Pédiatrique in Bangui
In 2013, a violent civil war engulfed one of the world’s poorest countries, the Central African Republic. EMERGENCY had been working there since 2009, when the director at the Complexe Pédiatrique, the only public paediatric hospital in the whole country, asked us to help manage the ongoing emergency. Over five years, we transformed the hospital, guaranteeing its patients the right to free, quality treatment. This had a wider effect and helped begin the process of rebuilding the national healthcare system, with the active participation of local and international institutions.
Blessing Raises Everyone’s Spirits
In Sierra Leone, a country that we have worked in for many years, EMERGENCY President Rossella Miccio and colleagues were stunned by a surprise visitor that we hadn’t seen since the devastating Ebola crisis.
“Sometimes there are moments of exhaustion and hopelessness…but then, something like this happens, an unexpected surprise that raises everyone’s spirits.
Her name is Blessing, she is 10 months old and the daughter of an ‘Ebola survivor’, Marie, that we first took care of in Lakka, and then in the Goderich Ebola Treatment Centre. A few days ago, Marie came back to our hospital to say hi to Doctor Gina, whom she hadn’t seen in three years, to show her a baby girl that she thought she would never have.”
— Rossella Miccio, President of EMERGENCY, from Sierra Leone
The 17th EMERGENCY Annual Meeting
Human rights, war and migration. Trento was the host city for our Annual Meeting in 2018. We spent two days in the historic town centre’s most distinctive spots, with speakers, volunteers, artists and all the other people who came to talk with us about war, peace, and EMERGENCY.
Elections under attack
The elections in Afghanistan, delayed for over three years, arrived with an expectation of violence. Bombings and attacks on government buildings caused dozens of injuries throughout the capital city. Our Kabul hospital received 50 wounded patients. One was dead when he arrived. He was ten years old.
A special visitor from Burundi at The Salam Centre
A key part of our activities here is conducting regular screening missions across the continent to identify those in need of life saving heart surgery. Little Chantal was one of those that needed treatment, and EMERGENCY organised her journey to Khartoum.
She was only a one year old when her parents discovered that she had a heart condition: she had been in and out of hospital ever since. We put an end to this. She came to Khartoum with her father and the surgery was a great success, as was the month of the follow-up physiotherapy she underwent at the Salam Centre whilst staying at the hospital guesthouse with her dad.
Now she is back in Burundi, living a normal life without any further therapy.
It was lovely to meet you, Chantal!
70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights
On 10 December, we proudly celebrated the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights As always, we stated that respecting the human rights of every person is the basis for a free and fair world.