The Volunteer Medical Corps (VMC), a global medical humanitarian aid organization, recently embarked on a refugee mission trip to Cotonou. The mission was planned and executed by members of the VMC in the Republic of Benin. The Republic of Benin currently accommodates refugees from the Central African Republic, Ivory Coast, Sri Lanka and other African nations, whose welfare is jointly coordinated by the country’s Coordinating Council for Refugees (CARN).
Representatives of CARN and the UNHCR were present at the medical outreach. Items donated were of both spiritual and material value to the displaced persons, and they included free copies of the Healing School Magazine, mosquito nets, water sterilization chemicals, oral rehydration salts, anti-malarial medications, sanitary pads and food items.
The VMC team also provided free medical screening (for blood pressure and BMI) to over 350 beneficiaries, including children. Many expressed their joy and appreciation for the concern shown for their health and also for the items delivered for their benefit.
The magnitude of the current global refugee crisis is the worst since the Second World War. According to UNHCR – the UN Refugee Agency — an unprecedented 65.6 million people around the world have been forced out of their homes. Among them are nearly 22.5 million refugees, over half of whom are under 18 years old. An estimated 30% of these displaced people are in Africa. An underlying fact of the situation is that the large numbers of refugees also means major challenges for host communities and nations. Refugees require and put a strain on facilities and infrastructure for housing, schools, food and health care.
The VMC considers it important to assist refugees with both material supplies and health services. Her outreaches benefit many men, women and children all over the world. Volunteers are needed; you can sign up today at www.blwmedicalcorps.org/registration.
The 2017 Volunteer Medical Corp Online Conference is less than 24 hours away, holding on Saturday, October 28th. To participate, please follow this link: http://bit.ly/JoinVMCOC2017.