In 2021, 32 of our members conducted 74 Health projects targeting 1,120,725 people in 15 countries.
For millions worldwide, access to basic health services and facilities is not a guarantee. Missionaries work to ensure that clean water, good nutrition, and access to medical and health care are accessible to those most in need of the life-transforming benefits of good health. In 2021 our members continued to see success in delivering basic health interventions despite the continuing challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic .
Wherever they worked and whatever form of health intervention was provided, from constructing solar-powered water pumps and boreholes in South Sudan to improving access to mother and baby care in Kenya, projects implemented by Misean Cara members in 2021 will continue to have a profound and long-lasting impact on the lives of millions of poor and marginalised people. Our members, situated as they are in the very communities they serve, are also planning for future needs, by working to align health care systems in remote areas with the national health strategies and standards they operate under. Other projects are training nurses and midwives to accommodate growing populations, establishing systems to improve patient record keeping in community hospitals, or purchasing ambulances to bring critically ill patients or birthing mothers to health centres for care.
COVID-19 –Update on Year 2 of the Global Health Emergency
In its second year, the COVID-19 pandemic caused further setbacks to the global health advances of the past 20 years, particularly around infectious disease control and maternal and infant health. The pandemic is also continuing to challenge vulnerable health systems including hospitals and clinics already over-stretched, under-supplied and in need of upgrades, which were pushed further to the limit of their capacities. We continued to support our members’ efforts to curb the spread of the virus in their communities, treat the sick, and offset the impact of secondary pandemic effects including hunger, domestic violence and loss of income.
We were able to distribute additional financial support to our members’ COVID-related initiatives due to a generous contribution from the US-based GHR Foundation, which provided co-funding for eight COVID-19 projects around the world. We received an additional commitment from Americares for funding to help train frontline health workers in Southern Africa in 2022.
Mary Ward Primary Health Care Centre: Improving access to healthcare in South Sudan
Misean Cara member:
Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Loreto)
Access to healthcare in South Sudan is severely limited, with only 1 doctor for every 65,000 people, and in rural areas, health facilities barely exist. Decades of conflict have created a mental health crisis with an estimated 1.2 million people with mental illness left untreated.
The Sisters of the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Loreto) have been running Primary and Secondary schools since 2008 in the rural Maker Kuei community and set up a class-room clinic to address some of the community’s urgent medical needs. Overwhelming demand led to the opening of the Mary Ward Primary Health Care Centre in 2019 to provide full medical services including mental healthcare, counselling, immunisations, and mother and child clinics.
In 2021 the Centre held over 36,000 patient consultations and more than 3,000 children received vital childhood vaccinations. Through a childhood nutrition programme, over 200 children under five were treated for malnutrition, successfully leaving the programme after three months having shown great improvement in their health. A mobile clinic enabled remote access to medical treatment for 24,000 patients in 7 remote villages.
Thanks to the Centre, children and adults affected by trauma after decades of war and conflict are now receiving counselling and learning how to cope with stress, depression, chronic fear, death, and grief.
The Primary Healthcare Centre in Rumbek has brought a measurable change to the community, with mothers and children, the most vulnerable in our society, well supported.
Sr. Orla Treacy,
Head Administrator of the Loreto Rumbek Mission
For further information about our work or to comment on this report, please contact:
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