Right now, approximately 80% of refugees live in developing countries, where healthcare infrastructure is already strained (UNHCR). Malnutrition and food insecurity are also prevalent issues in refugee populations, exacerbating their vulnerability. In fact, nearly 25% of refugee children suffer from chronic malnutrition, which hampers their growth and development. We are therefore currently working in Pakistan, as well as continuing our earthquake response activities in Turkiye and Syria, to provide medical care and nutrition to those most in need.
Since the devastating earthquakes on Monday 6th February 2023 resulting in a death toll of approximately 57,000 people, Doctors Worldwide’s team in Türkiye have been providing emergency relief and medical aid to those in need. To date, we have served over 139,000 people, as we continue to provide medical aid to hundreds every single day.
In North West Syria, there has been serious destruction in the areas where our previous clinic is located in Afrin Jindires, with over 8,000 deaths in total across all the earthquake affected areas in Syria. We are the only clinic in the Jindires IDP camps, which has rapidly increased due to population displacement of earthquake victims. At least 700 additional tents were added and are at capacity, adding to the already present refugee population living in the area and making use of our clinic.
- We are providing primary health care, maternity, mental health, internal medicine and dental health services with 65 personnel in our medical centres.
- We are providing a psychologist and case worker to offer much needed psycho-social support for children and adults that is currently missing in the Jindires IDP camp/area.
- We are working towards providing a safe space for indoor and outdoor play areas for children in Jindires IDP camp who currently have nowhere to play or go.
Pakistan: Nutrition is Everyone's Right
In the bustling town of Mansehra, amidst the shadows of uncertainty, reside approximately 1,800 Afghan refugee families. Among them is Safa, a 35-year-old woman who has called this place her home for the past fifteen years. Tragedy struck Safa’s life once again when she lost her husband to COVID-19 two years ago. In an instant, the weight of responsibility fell heavily on her shoulders, as she became the sole caretaker of their eight precious children.
Every day, Safa's children venture out into the fields and streets collecting discarded paper scraps and sell them to the local junkyard, earning a meager sum of Rs 200 to 250 (approximately 55p - 70p). In the meantime, Safa takes care of her cow and feeds her children using the money she generates by selling her cow’s milk.
When our team in Pakistan went to her house to provide her with much needed rations for Safa and her family, our team was heartbroken, sharing that “Safa’s house highlighted the vulnerability of her family because they did not even have enough to be protected from the cold or heat”.
Thanks to our team’s networks in Pakistan, Safa and her children were moved to a different house, where both her and her children are safer and happier. In addition, the whole family were registered on our canteen’s Welfare Programme, meaning they are now able to eat regular nutritious meals and lead healthier lives.
This World Refugee Day, support our vital work and ensure families like Safa’s receive the care and support they need.