Ever wondered how Mercy Ships came about? Why a ship? Why West Africa? Why a hospital? These questions are answered and more in the video clip above. Enjoy a little Mercy Ships history!
We are a family of three; Andrew, Jodie and Jessica (aged 17) from Tasmania, Australia who are currently serving in Cotonou, Benin West Africa on the M/V Africa Mercy, the largest non-governmental hospital ship in the world, through Mercy Ships International. God has called us on a journey that has been many years in the making. For this season we call West Africa home as we seek to bring hope and healing to the poorest of the poor.
Saturday, March 30, 2013
Monday, March 18, 2013
The sign that dutifully follows us around from country to country. A banner of hope that signifies the end of weeks, months and even years of excruciating pain for thousands of local Guineans.
The blue scrubs of Sieh, the Dental Team Leader stand out amongst the colourful crowd as he screens for potential patients.
Sieh has been screening for many years now and although he does not have any formal training he is an expert at triage.
After patients are selected they come through reception to have their history taken. A large percentage of West Africans are illiterate so when it comes to signing consent forms, many times a thumbprint has to suffice.
Patients ready to be seen as the team works hard to get through the day's patients which can total up to a hundred.
No time is wasted! While the patients are waiting to be seen they are educated in oral hygiene and the Jesus film is also played. Above day worker Henry talks about the importance of regular tooth brushing.
Sterilizing is a repetitive job so we have plenty of time for a bit of fun. The sterilizing room is where its is at for music, dancing and laughter. Above day worker Grace, Head Sterilizer Roses and I, smile for the camera.
Grace left us recently as she is pregnant. Her baby is due any day now. She was replaced by Pierre-above.
The kids were very excited to receive their hygiene packs with toothbrushes and toothpaste inside. The dental team also give out donated knitted teddies to children who visit the clinic.
Friday, March 01, 2013
Mamadou who will willingly go to anyone with his lovely sweet temperament.
Ortho patient George with one of his rare smiles. The wards are a scary place for kids and adults alike in West Africa where health care is very basic and certainly not located on a big white ship resting on the ocean.
Little Alseny with his cleft lip. Alseny came in with his healthy and chubby twin sister but Alsney was dangerously underweight and malnourished. Now he has had his cleft lip repaired and is nice and fat just like his sister, in fact even fatter!