Dorcas and Anna

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These little blind sisters live in a country so poor there is no educational or medical support for their family. Imagine how all their lives were transformed changed when Dorcas and Anna received free operations that gave them sight! The struggled up the gangway unable to see the world … Read More

Finially pain-free

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“I remember one of the worst days,” says Veronique. “I was in so much pain, I could not even get out of bed.” Six years ago a tumour started to grow on Veronique’s chin. What began as a small bump slowly gained momentum until it took over her … Read More

The nurse’s tumour

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“It’s the largest tumour I’ve ever seen,” said the X-ray technician, watching as the massive tumour travelled across the computer screen. It belonged to Sonia, a 34-year old nurse. The growth stretched out from her left cheek and was the size of a human head. Sonia passed through … Read More

Deb Adesanya-Woman’s Day

The backstory: Caring for children recovering from major surgery was Deborah Adesanya’s assignment olunteering in the wards aboard the 16,000 tonne hospital ship, Africa Mercy. Some of her most poignant moments were with babies receiving surgery to correct birth defects like cleft lip and palate.  Most of her … Read More

The teacher’s burden

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It seemed like a small thing, so Lalao* paid scant attention to the small bump on her face. Instead of disappearing over time as she expected, the swelling on the Malagasy schoolteacher’s face grew and grew. Over 14 years the benign tumour developed until it resembled a huge … Read More

Me first!

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“It was the stunning World Cup victory in 2010 which brought me to name my son after football coach José Mourinho,” says Maurinho’s dad. It makes sense, then, when his mum describes her son’s competitive nature. “When Maurinho says that he wants to achieve something, he will not … Read More

Removing Marthe’s burden

“We weren’t sure if she’d come back alive,” Marthe’s friends and family declared when they welcomed her back home. She was returning from a long stay on the Africa Mercy, over four hours away, where surgeons removed tumour weight more than 13 kilos from her back. A massive burden had literally … Read More

Rose and her Dad

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Pounding yams … hand-washing clothes … head-carrying water or goods to sell … feeding a baby … all common tasks for women in many parts of West Africa. For some, it’s part of living; for others, it’s a matter of surviving. For a young girl like Rose, having … Read More

Transformed

Adiza’s goitre had been growing for more than half of her 63 years of life. It became so large it was strangling her. Weighing over 2.5 kilos, it wrapped around her neck, squeezing her trachea from the back and sides. She could barely breathe or talk, and the … Read More

Sisters with new sight

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“When I gave birth to Dorkas, she was a healthy baby,” recalled Nicole. “But the problems started soon after.” As she watched her firstborn constantly squinting, she became concerned. “I started to wonder what this could be,” she said. Her fears were confirmed and multiplied when, three years later, a … Read More

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