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Mercy Ships

Of all the birthdays he’d celebrated in his life, Emmanuel’s 43rd would turn out to be something truly extraordinary. Just a few days after turning the page to a new year of life, a new chapter began. Emmanuel was wheeled into an operating room on board the Global Mercy™ hospital ship, where he became the very first patient to receive surgery during the field service in Freetown, Sierra Leone. There, in a surgery that took just 48 minutes, Emmanuel was freed from the tumor that had been growing on his neck for 4 years.

Guinean Eye Surgeon Shares Valuable Training to Empower Others

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A talented surgeon who is always seeking to learn, Dr. Thierno Bah has traveled to cities around the world for trainings and conferences. His experience and skill as an ophthalmic surgeon have already made him a vital part of Guinea’s surgical ecosystem.

Collaborative partnerships boost surgical care needs in West Africa, experts hear

Freetown, SIERRA LEONE – Renowned surgeons and medical experts from across West Africa and beyond met in Freetown, Sierra Leone to propose ways of accelerating access to surgical care and education at the 64th Conference and Scientific Meeting of the West African College of Surgeons (WACS). The week-long event marks a significant milestone in demonstrating West Africa’s medical expertise, offering a platform to exchange ideas and collectively shape the future of surgery and anesthesia while demonstrating the great progress that the Sierra Leone Ministry of Health (MOH) has made with global partnerships.

International Women’s Day: Sierra Leone’s Florence Bangura is fostering opportunities for growth in all women, starting with herself

At a young age, Florence Bangura was barred from working and married off by her father. But the adversity may be the reason the 49-year-old from Sierra Leone is today the embodiment of what International Women’s Day is all about.

The Woman Who Forged Her Way Through Walls: Florence Bangura’s Story

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Florence Bangura’s history with Mercy Ships spans 20 years, covering two countries, three ships, and four field services. At the age of 29, Florence worked as a welder on board the very first Mercy Ships hospital ship, the Anastasis, just a week after becoming officially certified in her trade. She later came on board the Africa Mercy® as a national day crewmember when it visited her home country of Sierra Leone in 2011, and in 2018 returned to the ship during its field service in the neighboring nation of Guinea.

Transforming Sierra Leone’s Healthcare: A Vision for Safe and Affordable Surgery

As experts from the surgical and healthcare world gather for the 64th Annual Conference and Scientific Meeting of the West African College of Surgeons in Sierra Leone this week, a profound dedication to advancing surgical knowledge and practice in the region is palpable. At the forefront of discussions lies the conference's pivotal theme: access to safe and affordable surgical and anesthetic care in West Africa. This theme highlights the pressing need to address disparities in healthcare capabilities and capacities across the region, especially the critical importance of equitable access to quality surgical interventions.

Ministry of Health and Mercy Ships Extend Stay of Hospital Ship in Sierra Leone to Provide Life-Changing Surgeries and Education

The Ministry of Health, in collaboration with the renowned international charity Mercy Ships, proudly announces the extension of the Global Mercy’s stay in Sierra Leone. This affirms the commitment to addressing the surgical needs of the Sierra Leonean people and advancing healthcare education in the region.

Two Dentists Find a Powerful Shared Purpose on the Global Mercy™

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Dr. Marijke Westerduin and Dr. Salematou Camara met face-to-face as dentists on board the world’s largest civilian hospital ship – but their first encounter took place years earlier through a screen. In 2020, as the COVID-19 pandemic swept across the globe, Dr. Westerduin logged onto Zoom calls from her home in the Netherlands to help train Dr. Camara, then a dental student at the Universite Gamal Abdel Nasser of Conakry (UGANC) in Guinea. These regular calls became a bridge, connecting Dr. Westerduin’s wealth of experience as a dental professional with Dr. Camara’s growing aspirations.  

Finding New Freedom: Unlocking Ramatulai’s Voice

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For the last 20 years, Ramatulai’s voice had been locked inside, as she was completely unable to open her mouth.  The rare condition, temporomandibular joint (TMJ) ankylosis, affected Ramatulai from early infancy when she experienced trauma to her jaw as a newborn. 

A Decade of Giving Back: One Maritime Volunteer’s Story

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As a member of the international community living and working on board the Global Mercy™, volunteer assistant bosun Ishaka Sesay is conscious that he has become an ambassador for his home country of Sierra Leone.  “That is why… people never see me with a frowning face, always with a big smile,” he explained. “That will take you a long way, toward whatever you do.”