My name is Cindy, I am 31 years old, and I am from New Zealand. I am a nurse who works with children, young people and their families. After completing my degree I worked and travelled extensively in Australia including the remote communities, then spent a few years doing my OE (for those not in New Zealand this is my overseas experience – a rite of passage for all Kiwis) before returning home and settling into real life again.
Then in 2011 I started working with MSF and spent over a year working in Tajikistan setting up a new comprehensive family tuberculosis project that focused on paediatric drug-resistant TB. During this time I discovered just how much working for MSF suited me so I quit the job I had on hold back home and after a few short weeks I headed off on my second mission.
Now I am in Pakistan on my second mission where I have a six-month contract to supervise and take overall responsibility of a neonatal nursery and paediatric inpatient department as well as support the nutrition program including the inpatients and ambulatory patients. I am here to guide the nurses and doctors in following the protocols and improve outcomes for the children and babies. We also have a maternal inpatient department, birthing unit and emergency department. The community is a very conservative and marginalized population and the challenges are immense. Currently due to many different factors our project is managed remotely from Islamabad but we hope this will change in the coming months and our team will be able to spend time in the field.