Our Work2

Mercy Ships takes hospital ships to the world’s forgotten poor, bringing hope, healing and healthcare.
Mercy Ships’ volunteer crews relieve pain and suffering for thousands every year.
Here you can find out more about what we do and why we do it.
We invite you to join us on this journey either as a supporter, through donations or as a volunteer.

With more than 75% of the world’s population living within 100 miles of a port city, taking the world’s largest civilian hospital ship directly to the point of need, to people who would otherwise go without care, is a logical strategy to alleviating human suffering.

Taking a state-of-the-art, fully equipped and staffed, self-sufficient hospital into areas of extreme poverty means we can provide first class medical care in the midst of desperate conditions.

In the poorest parts of Africa, children suffer and die from treatable causes. Mercy Ships sails into these regions to provide first-rate medical care that saves lives.

Our volunteer medical teams remove tumours, give sight to the blind, correct clefts, fix fractures and more. Over 74,000 free surgeries have been performed for people in poverty since 1978.

Mercy Ships’ core values reflect a belief that every individual is made in the image of God, and worthy of a helping hand to alleviate their suffering.

In many developing countries, even basic medical care is a luxury. And in Africa, nearly 50 percent of the people have no access to a hospital or doctor.

Children, teens, adults and the elderly suffer and die every day from curable or treatable causes. A staggering 6.6 million children under the age of five died in 2012 from treatable diseases – more than 18,000 children per day. (Source: WHO).

Many nations in Africa are ranked by the United Nations Human Development Index as the least developed nations on earth.

There are only two doctors per 10,000, New Zealand has 10 times that ratio.

On average 170 of every 1000 African children die before they are five, compared with the loss of five out of 1000 Kiwi children

A West African women has a 1/16 chance of dying during pregnancy, it’s a 1/7150 risk in New Zealand

An estimated 70% of Africans live on less than NZ$2.25 each per day to meet all their needs; food, shelter, education and more

The challenge is enormous but each day we are making a difference as we provide surgical and healthcare solutions. As we work alongside local partners, mentoring and training people in their healthcare arena is a sustainable investment into improving the healthcare systems for the future.

(l-r) Anneke admissions nurse, grandmother, Meilissa Admissions nurse, mother, day worker translator in the admissions tent.

You can help provide a lifesaving surgery for someone where medical care is nearly non-existent. See how your donation can transform a life forever.