“Afghanistan has been at war for more than 40 years and unfortunately it seems that the path towards peace and stability is still very long.” Meet Marco, our Programme Coordinator in Afghanistan, where EMERGENCY runs four hospitals, dozens of clinics, a 24/7 ambulance network, and has treated over 7 million patients.
Despite the pandemic and ongoing peace talks, 2020 has been an extremely difficult year for Afghans. “Attacks are continuous and constant, causing a high-casualty rate among civilians, innocent victims of this conflict,” says Marco.
Decades of conflict have not only taken their toll on Afghanistan’s people but on its health infrastructure too. “The Afghan health system is one of the victims. It is an overwhelmed system characterised by a lack of qualified medical staff. This point is particularly dramatic if we focus on women: the number of female medical staff is still dramatically low, particularly in the small cities and the countryside. The access to health is very difficult because of the security context and the lack of infrastructure.”
In the midst of all this, we have never stopped providing free, sustainable healthcare for current generations and the ones to come. To do so, we rely on people like Marco and over 1,000 Afghan staff members, trained and employed by EMERGENCY to support communities across the country.
In the midst of all this #EMERGENCYisThere.
“I arrived in Afghanistan in January 2018, the start of a really bad year for this country and its people. That year, EMERGENCY registered the highest number of mass casualty events (31) and the highest number of war-wounded patients treated in our projects in Kabul and Lashkar-Gah (over 6,600).
Afghans are some of the most resilient people that I have ever met. Their strength and capacity to cope with the extreme daily difficulties and to overcome them is incredible.”
Marco, Afghanistan Programme Coordinator