Healing the heart of Africa
The queues wind on for miles around the dusty port of Conakry, Guinea. From afar, it might look like a procession of ants, but as you get closer, you’re confronted by the reality of the thousands upon thousands of people waiting in line. These are people waiting in hope, rather than expectation.
Many of these people have travelled for miles on foot in order to be screened by Mercy Ships, in hope of receiving the help on offer. For these people, it is worth the journey no matter how slim their chances.
Living in the UK, sometimes the issues further afield seem out of our reach. But every now and then the image of those people in Africa hits you, whether it’s an advert on the train or a news report. If only there were something you could do…
What is Mercy Ships?
Mercy Ships is a floating hospital, founded in 1978 by a Christian couple. It runs on the vision of providing services, mainly healthcare, to some of the poorest places in the world. To date it has served more than 70 countries, helping in excess of 2 million people.
Approximately 50% of the population of Africa has no access to a hospital or doctor, and Guinea is one of the least developed countries in the world. Ranking 178 out of 187 on the UN Human Development Index, this is where Mercy Ships is currently based.
“In 2010, Guinea held its first democratic election, following 24 years under a dictator and 2 years under military control,” a spokesperson for Mercy Ships says. The President of Guinea is now both head of state and head of government and Mercy Ships have returned to the country following his personal request. Continue reading