Mercy Ships stands with 11 West and Central African partner nations in Coronavirus fight

PPE is donated to Ghana via Mercy Ships Board Members. (L-R): Rosa Whitaker, President, Mercy Ships; Dr. Patrick Kuma-Aboagye, Director-General, Ghana Health Services; Dr. Juliette Tuakli, Mercy Ships International Board Member; Lucy Quist, Mercy Ships International Board Member.

ACCRA GHANA – 18 June 2020 — Dr. Patrick Kuma-Aboagye, Director-General, Ghana Health Services, took delivery of a donation of PPE designated for the nation of Ghana today by Mercy Ships President Rosa Whitaker on behalf of the charity to support the national battle with coronavirus.

“We applaud Ghana’s fight against this virus,” stated Whitaker. “Mercy Ships is committed to build on the collaboration between NGOs, the private sector and the public sector and encourages others to do the same,” she added.

“Although many have predicted that the pandemic is inevitable within Africa and that this continent will soon become the epicenter of the new outbreak, we stand with our African partners at this crucial time. It is our hope and belief that nations can get ahead of this curve and hold back the relentless effects that this pandemic could have on our formal and informal economies and people,” stated Whitaker.

“For more than 30 years, Mercy Ships has stood shoulder to shoulder with our African partners to address the global surgery crisis.  Even though borders are closed, and we cannot physically be present right now, Mercy Ships continues to conduct online medical capacity training and support ongoing projects with partners on the ground.  We are committed for our ship to return to help strengthen healthcare systems within West and Central Africa, as soon as the global situation allows,” said Whitaker.

Mercy Ships has donated Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to eight partner nations within West and Central Africa: Benin, Congo, Ghana, Liberia, Madagascar, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Togo totaling 80,800 items and 20 infrared thermometers and will donate PPE to an additional three countries Cameroon, Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Guinea.

The donation to Ghana includes 9000 (PPE) items consisting of: 1,500 nursing caps, 1,500 medical protective glasses, 1,500 masks FFP2, 1,500 pairs of gloves, 1,500 surgical gowns, 1,500 pairs of shoe covers and five Infrared Thermometers (IT).

The people of Ghana hold a warm place in the hearts of all Mercy Ships crew, volunteers, and international staff, said Whitaker.  Mercy Ships has been involved with Ghana since 1991 and a Mercy Ship has docked four times in Ghana.  (1)   The Africa Mercy has 85 long/short term crew from Africa, 10 of whom are Ghanaians in roles ranging from engineering to HR.

The donation was made in the presence of Dr Juliette Tuakli and Lucy Quist, Mercy Ships International Board Members who reside in Ghana.

(1)      Mercy Ships field services to Ghana: (1991, 1994-1995, 2006-2007 and 2011-2012).

Coronavirus: Benin Government Received New Donations

To respond effectively to the pandemic of the new Covid-19 coronavirus, donations continue to flow to the Ministry of Health. In response to the government’s appeal for solidarity, several structures supported the state on Wednesday, April 22, 2020.

The donors’ ballet of the day was opened by Aviation Handling Services (AHS). The transport and logistics company specializing in air cargo has handed over a check worth 15 million CFA francs to the order of the Ministry of Health. A financial donation that follows a previous donation of equipment, said Pétas Akogbéto, representative of the Minister of Health.

In addition to AHS, three other structures have succeeded in giving donations of materials. These are the Beninese Football Federation and the international NGOs Direct-Aid and Mercy Ships. said Dr. Pierre Mpélé, Africa Director of NGO Mercy Ships. In addition to the hydroalcoholic masks and gels offered, the resident representative of Direct Aid, for its part, announced an upcoming donation of food to the people of Benin.


UNGA Reception in NYC

During UNGA in New York, African heads of state and AfroChampions companies gather to focus on global surgery crisis and celebrate nonprofit that provides free healthcare in Africa

NEW YORK (September 27, 2019) –  At a reception Wednesday hosted by Mercy Ships and the AfroChampions Initiative, African heads of state and prominent business leaders came together in support of the work Mercy Ships is doing to address the surgery crisis in Africa. Worldwide, 5 billion people do not have access to safe, affordable, timely surgery, and in sub-Saharan Africa 93 percent of the population cannot get the surgery it needs. 1

Organized under the patronage of H.E. Macky Sall, president of the Republic of Senegal, and H.E. Olusegun Obasanjo, former president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and patron of the AfroChampions Initiative, the reception was attended by more than 200 people. These included business leaders, heads of state and government representatives from the Union of Comoros, the Republic of Ghana, the Republic of Togo, the Republic of Madagascar and the Republic of Senegal, as well as the Director General of the World Health Organization, and representatives of the World Bank and the United Nations. The event focused on the global surgery crisis and raised funds to support the successful efforts in Africa of Mercy Ships, which addresses this severe surgical need by providing free healthcare to their nations.

Mercy Ships offers treatments, infrastructures and trainings of medical staff, and therefore creates lasting change in Africa,” said Edem Adzogenu, co-founder and chair of the Executive Committee, AfroChampions Initiative. “Their work is fully aligned with the AfroChampions Initiative’s vision, and there was no hesitation from our side when they asked for our support on this sensitization campaign. Response from the AfroChampions corporate network has been positive, with substantial commitments — we are proud to see that the African private sector starts to appreciate the issue and understands that we now need an Africa that is self-sustained in health. We look forward to building more partnerships between Mercy Ships and our champions in the future.”

Mercy Ships is honored to work with these African nations to support them in building self-sustaining health care systems, to change and save significantly more lives, and to have a lasting impact across the countries of Africa,” Mercy Ships founder Don Stephens said.

The global surgery crisis results in more annual deaths than HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis combined. To address this crisis in Africa, Mercy Ships sends hospital ships staffed by volunteer medical professionals to the places where surgeons are needed most. These surgeons also train local medical staff who will stay in their home countries, effecting change long after Mercy Ships departs. Mercy Ships has touched more than 2.7 million lives since the nonprofit was founded in 1978.

Learn more about the organization, including donation and volunteer opportunities, at

1 Lancet Commission on Global Surgery


Mercy Ships uses hospital ships to deliver free, world-class healthcare services, capacity building and sustainable development to those with little access in the developing world. Founded in 1978 by Don and Deyon Stephens, Mercy Ships has worked in more than 55 developing countries, providing services valued at more than $1.53 billion, treating more than 2.71 million direct beneficiaries. Our ships are crewed by volunteers from over 50 nations, an average of over 1,000 volunteers each year. Professionals including surgeons, dentists, nurses, healthcare trainers, teachers, cooks, seamen, engineers and agriculturalists donate their time and skills. With 16 national offices and our African Bureau, Mercy Ships seeks to transform individuals and serve nations one at a time. For more information:

About the AfroChampions Initiative

The AfroChampions Initiative is a public-private partnership designed to galvanize African resources and institutions to drive further Africa’s economic integration; as a consequence, the Initiative supports the emergence and success of African corporate champions, which have a critical role in integrating African markets and accelerating the transformation of the continent.