"Aisha is curled up on the mattress. She has a beautiful smile despite having just lost her two front teeth. Aisha and her family fled Raqqa City last month. Despite the challenges, they have managed to sustain Aisha’s need for regular blood transfusions, relying on family members for frequent donations of blood..."
"So what does this look like for a day to day? I wish I could describe the stereotypical MSF assignment – driving around in the ubiquitous MSF land cruiser down dirt roads, working with marginal populations in basic healthcare facilities, wearing the white MSF t-shirt, saving lives on the frontline, operating in a deployable tent. But it’s not. There’s a subway here."
"I made it with all my luggage. I have to say, that was a huge relief. My luggage was significantly less than my previous assignment to Tajikistan (read: I didn't bring 4 bags of coffee and tons of Deirdre Soap), but nevertheless, it's always a lovely feeling to see your familiar orange backpack emerge from the conveyer belt. Yes, clean underwear is in the future!"
"The packing has given me huge anxiety. I think it's my brain's way of channelling the monumental anxiety I feel about the mission as a whole, something that is still reasonably graspable. Yet. How many pairs of shoes to pack? What do I bring for work clothes? How much personal stuff can I take with me?"
"The first time I met Mahmoud, he was walking down the road in West Mosul. The war was raging fewer than two kilometres away, the sound of explosions pierced the ear drums, the constant gunfire reigned terror on the nervous system, and there was Mahmoud – walking down the road with a mint plant in hand..."
Caroline is a health promotion manager currently on assignment with MSF in Pakistan. She explains how dangerous drug mis-use is threatening women's health in the area, and how she and her team are developing new (and surprisingly fun) ways to combat this...
"I'm really happy about stories like this one: we had a boy with meningitis come into the hospital. After I saw him I really thought he wouldn't make it. The next day I came to see him and I couldn't believe my eyes - he was sitting up in bed and wanted breakfast!"