MAP continues healthcare in volatile regions of Darfur, Chad

from MAP International
Published on 03 Apr 2008
Despite recent increased violence in Sudan's western region of Darfur, MAP International is continuing to provide critical healthcare services as part of what has become the world's largest humanitarian response. And as the violence has spread, MAP's efforts have increased. In 2007, as fighting spilled over the border into neighboring Chad, MAP responded in the area with medicines, medical supplies and healthcare programs.

The Darfur crisis erupted in 2003 when rebels attacked the Sudanese government, accusing it of doing little to alleviate the region's poverty and lack of infrastructure. Fighting in subsequent years, which has often targeted civilian populations, has killed more than 200,000 people and displaced more than 2.5 million, many of whom have taken up residence in refugee camps in neighboring countries as well as in the Darfur desert.

As part of a consortium of relief agencies known as the Global Relief Alliance, MAP International is operating two healthcare clinics in western Darfur that collectively serve 36,000 people. As part of a community-based health education program, MAP is also training healthcare workers in the area to provide basic healthcare and education for people within their communities.

In nearby Chad, where the life expectancy is a mere 50 years, aid agencies are scrambling to help nearly a half million people affected by violence both within and outside the country's borders. More than 300,000 people have fled to refugee camps along the country's eastern border to escape fighting in Darfur and Central African Republic, but tens of thousands of Chadians have fled their own country to neighboring Cameroon in order to escape violence between Chad's government and rebel factions. Another 200,000 Chadians have also fled to the camps in eastern Chad.

In response, MAP has provided more than $2 million in medicines for people living in refugee camps throughout the country and has equipped a new hospital in the city of Goz Bieda. MAP has provided operating tables, X-ray machines, sonograms and other equipment for the facility, which serves an area of 250,000 people.

As in Darfur, MAP has also worked with partner agencies to establish community-based health education programs in areas where outbreaks of disease are especially high. Thus far MAP has trained hundreds of healthcare workers that serve tens of thousands of refugees and other persons in Chad and Darfur.