Our last day in Moria. It was busy, we saw 105 patients. Not much time to think about it being the last day.
My day started with a young man, maybe 24, injured in a fight last night, he had been sent to the hospital, he had sutures on his chin, a broken jaw and a black eye. He was sent back to the camp clinic for follow-up because he needed surgery the hospital couldn’t do. So, what were we supposed to do? He didn’t even have pain meds, couldn’t open his mouth and his one eye was swollen shut. I appealed to Abdulhadi who agreed we had to do something and he went to the still non-functioning Greek govornment clinic to plead with a social worker to get the patient moved anywhere in Greece where his jaw could be fixed. It took a day but Abdulhadi got the paperwork in motion and the man will be moved very soon. Very soon could still be a week or so!
Another patient a middle-aged Afghani man I have been doing wound care on for 2 weeks with horrendous leg wounds, that were infected. His dressing really smelled bad today and when I irrigated the wound it was clearly not getting better. We agreed to send him to the hospital – by bus. the man could barely walk, probably has osteomyelitis. He was writhing in pain today and he is supposed to take a bus and then walk 2 blocks to the hospital???
I wanted to reach in my pocket and give him the 20 euro note I have but there are strict rules in the clinic to not do this. It made me cry to have him limp out in such pain. Now I hope the hospital doesn’t just give him more antibiotics and send him back to a tent in the camp.
A young unaccompanied minor of 15 was brought over in a full-blown panic attack. He was harming himself and as 2 people helped him in he banged his head really hard on the doorway. Lydia, the new doctor from Germany doing her second stint at Moria, was amazing. She talked him down so gently. I massaged his feet while she got him to breathe and relax. Finally, he sat up and I put my arms around him and he just cried and cried. So young, so difficult, his life here. I have no idea of his story, only that he left Afghanistan, a war torn country, and is here alone at 15.
I told my Libyan physical therapist that I was leaving and he gave me a big hug and said please don’t forget me. I never will.
Leslie, Georgia, Karen, Tama, Nancy, Marine, Zoe, Scott, Genevive: THANK YOU for being such a competent and compassionate team! Hands On Global works because of your work! And Thank You to ALL YOU DONORS. This work is your work too and you made it possible.
There are great providers staying and taking our place. They will continue the impossible task of caring for 9,000 people in a broken system. The system is broken way deeper than the Moria Camp. It is a global crisis. There is a global movement to the right where people are putting wealth and self-gain ahead of the needs of their fellow humans and of the planet. We are creating this massive downward spiral, humanitarianly, ecologically, economically, morally. Racism and hatred are on the rise. Moria Refugee Camp is an example of the results of this and is only one of literally hundreds of refugee camps around the world. 68 million displaced people and more everyday with nowhere to go and governments turning their backs on them.
What will it take to turn the tide? Why is there such a split in our views of moral responsibility for each others well being? Here we have shared experiences with people from all over the globe, different races, religions, cultures, economic statuses and we found the similarities and became a family. It was easy and enriching to know each other.
Checking in on the US election results it does not look good.
Where are we going? I am disgusted, and deeply grieve my country’s moral decline.
We now fly to Istanbul.