The 2015 Ride for Refuge is just around the corner, a family-friendly cycling and walking fundraiser that helps charities and their supporters to raise money for their work with the displaced, vulnerable and exploited!
Mercy Ships would be nothing without our amazing partners, donors and volunteers.
Thanks to the support of people all over the world, we have provided care to over 2.5 million people in 37 years, visiting 587 ports since Mercy Ships was founded in 1978.
Each country we visit is unique, as are the people and the problems they face. Therefore our programs vary with each country we visit, tailored to fit the needs of different cultures and communities.
This month we will start our second field service in Madagascar. Thanks to committed donors and volunteers, in addition to providing free surgeries and healthcare onboard the Africa Mercy, we will also be investing in a wide range of health infrastructure, training and programs that address pressing needs for the people of Madagascar.
Running capacity building programs in addition to a full service hospital onboard the Africa Mercy takes a lot of time, money and resources. So many people give generous gifts that help make our work possible, but it is our monthly donors who really allow us to invest in programs that go above and beyond to foster long term health in the countries we work in.
These monthly donors don’t all give a huge amount of money each month – some give as little as $5 – but knowing we can count on them every month with a reliable donation allows us to develop projects that would be impossible without them.
Thanks to monthly donors and volunteers, this year we are building a Women’s Health Clinic in Madagascar, which will provide long-term support for women with devastating conditions like VVF (LINK). We are also investing more in the Food for Life Program (LINK), which addresses food insecurity by giving Malagasy communities long term solutions for hunger in impoverished communities.
This is in addition to the 2, 091 free life changing surgeries we will give in Madagascar this year, as well a wide range of general treatments, medical infrastructure and training programs. Without donors and volunteers, none of this would be possible.
Small gifts make a big difference.
As we start our second service in Madagascar, monthly donors have never had such a significant impact on our work in the field. Reliable monthly support means us being able to plan and carry out much needed projects, bringing hope and healing to as many people as possible.
This September we are asking you to consider what $5 means to you – a cup of coffee? Spare change around the house? To most people living in Madagascar, $5 is more than 25% of their monthly income. $5 can help put a roof over a family’s head, keep a child from going hungry and help care for them when they are sick. $5 a month can make a real difference.
Please consider investing in our projects and the people of Madagascar with a small gift each month. Click here (LINK) to learn about the various programs your help can support, and help us build a future in Madagascar where no one goes hungry, care is given to those in need, and hope is given to those who have none, long after the Africa Mercy departs.
– Andrea, Donor Relations and Communications, Mercy Ships Canada
Madagascar, the fourth-largest island in the world, is home to over twenty-two million people. But there are only eight surgeons who specialize in orthopedics and traumatology. Most of them are located in the capital city, Antananarivo.
In the port city of Tamatave, where the Mercy Ships is docked, Dr. Randrianirina Andry is the only orthopedic surgeon. He says, “We need to train more people to become orthopedic surgeons. We especially need more adequate conditions and equipment for these types of surgery.”
The statistics verify his statement. It is estimated that over 15,000 adults and children are afflicted with neglected clubfoot, and nearly a thousand babies are born with clubfoot each year.* In addition, people suffer from other orthopedic deformities, such as bowed legs.
Driven by a passion for bringing hope and healing to those who would never otherwise receive treatment, Mercy Ships provided 55 free orthopedic surgeries and over 990 orthopedic therapy services during the 2014-2015 Madagascar Field Service.
But Mercy Ships also invested in the long-term future of Madagascar’s health infrastructure by providing healthcare education. The healthcare education projects impart knowledge and skills, while modeling and encouraging compassion and a professional work ethic. In addition to offering internationally recognized courses for groups and structured observation in the Africa Mercy hospital, Mercy Ships also provides one-on-one mentoring opportunities. (more…)
We’re happy to announce that Mercy Ships Canada is now a partner of ChangeIt; a new way to donate while making everyday purchases using your existing BMO MasterCard. ChangeIt lets you automatically round up your purchases and donate the difference to us!
With ChangeIt you can track your donations online, control your rounding preferences and even set a monthly maximum. At the start of each month, a donation notification will be delivered straight to your inbox from ChangeIt to let you know how much you donated in the previous cycle. You’ll also receive an annual Official Donation Receipt for Income Tax Purposes from us for every penny you donate.
It’s the easiest way to give, and getting started is simple.
– Sign up your BMO MasterCard by clicking on the orange button
– Select Mercy Ships Canada and set your rounding limits
– Use your BMO MasterCard and start making a difference
* For a complete list of participating financial institutions, visit ChangeIt.com/partners
On August 3, the Africa Mercy will leave Durban, South Africa, where the ship has been receiving vital maintenance and repairs in preparation for our second service in Madagascar. In anticipation of starting our 2015/2016 service, keep reading to learn more about this fascinating country and why Mercy Ships is working there.
Most of the population depends on farming rice and cattle, with coffee, vanilla, and seafood being important exports. Unfortunately frequent natural disasters, an increasingly fragile ecosystem and poor land management have resulted in 72% of the population currently living in poverty.
Madagascar has many preventable health issues that due to lack of money and resources have devastating effects on population. Women are particularly vulnerable, with childbirth accounting for thousands of injuries and deaths every year. Addressing an alarming need, in September 2015 Mercy Ships volunteers will lead the construction of a land-based women’s clinic that will provide care for women in need during this service and long after the ship departs. Watch this video on the Women’s Health Program to learn more.