Everyday is different and unpredictable at Moria. Today was wound day. There were many new wounds to treat along with the ones I follow up on daily or every few days. A fight the night before sent 4 men to the hospital, 3 with significant stab wounds that were stitched up at the hospital but needed attention today. There is a mysterious festering, ulceration of pimples that may be is a mosquito bite, may be a parasite, wounds get really infected. Leslie just did research and it seems like this IS a parasitic infection endemic in the middle east, Syria, Turkey and Afghanistan. It is Leishmaniasis. We are now trying to figure out the treatment options we have here.
Georgia got away for an hour and met with the European legal team. 46% of the people in Greece who apply, get asylum. The others have their asylum denied. Some go in hiding, many get deported back to Turkey. And surprisingly, we found out that Syrians are denied asylum because the EU made a deal with Turkey and they are supposed to have safety there. A Syrian male who arrives at the camp is immediately put into the camp prison, sometimes for 3 months. Male refugees who arrive from a country which is basically not considered a war zone are also put into the camp prison.
When we finished clinic today our translators took us for a walk around the camp. The food lines were long and people have to queue up for 3 hours or more. Everyday there are fights and stabbings in the food line as people are desperate for food. There are separate women and men food lines.
The ISO boxes house up to 4 families. Tents are strewn in between and then tarps made into make shift tents. In parts of the camp the ISO boxes are stacked 2 high. People are housed in different areas of the camp and by cultures. So Afghan, Africans, Arabs all have their own sections. Bienvenus, our french translator from the Congo, brought us to his second floor isobar where he lives with 12 others. There are beds, many that are privatized by blankets hung around. It was hot and stuffy and there is a small cooking stove in the corner.
Then there is the overflow Olive Grove Camp which is tent after tent and tarp after tarp. Felt more peaceful here among the olive trees though Farrah, our Somali/Arabic translator said most of the rapes occur here.
There was this amazing bright spot in the middle of the camp where Boat Refugees Relief artists were working with kids on the mural in the photo. So wonderful that the kids were all happy and engaged. Omar also does a kids “School” two evenings a week where he has English teachers , sometimes math but mostly games.
We are invited to tea with Rahmadulla, our Afghan translator’s sister, in their olive grove tent but because it was quickly getting dark our translators insisted we leave and come back in the day.
Leaving the camp several of us went to Nikos in Pamfila to drink wine next to the water. Again we are uncomfortable with our privilege. We process and ask how do we change the tide of greed and hatred ? ONE BY ONE ?
Yes. But is seems so slow and people are in such dire straits NOW. Humanity really cannot wait. We must act now.