Two MSF staff members were killed in Somalia yesterday. This is shocking and very sad news.
Philippe Havet, a 53-year-old from Belgium, was an experienced emergency coordinator who had been working with MSF since 2000 in many countries, including Angola, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Indonesia, Lebanon, Sierra Leone, South Africa and Somalia.
Andrias Karel Keiluhu, better known as ‘Kace’, was a 44-year-old medical doctor who had worked with MSF since 1998 in his native Indonesia as well as in Ethiopia, Thailand and Somalia.
There are further details on the MSF website.
Philippe Havet (right) and Andrias Karel Keiluhu, better known as ‘Kace’ (left). © MSF
My thoughts, sympathy and love go to their families and friends, those affected by the incident, as well as the people of Somalia.
One of the reasons I support MSF is their commitment to the people who need health care, even in the worst situations.
This tweet from @msf_field sums it up for me;
Even in times of personal grief and hurt, MSF are planning how to continue to help the people of Somalia.
This is why I p/hop.
We don’t normaly do what I am about to do at p/hop. We are a steady fundraiser for Médecins Sans Frontières meaning there’s money in the pot as and when it is needed. Our blog is usually about knitting and how we, the knitting community, raise money and awareness for MSF. However the dreadful situation facing hundreds of thousands of people, ordinary people, trying to live their lives and raise their children in Somalia, is dire.
You can read more about it on the MSF website, or see it on the news (when they are reporting on more than the immoral behaviour of a newspaper) but here is a summary.
- As prolonged drought grips Somalia, people are losing their livestock, homes and lives. Poor harvests, rising food prices, continuing violence and chronic poverty have further contributed to a sudden rise in malnutrition rates.
- Almost one in three children is suffering from severe malnutrition
- The security situation in Somalia is complicated, but because MSF is an impartial medical organisation and relies on charitable donations instead of government funding, it continues to be the only medical charity working in many areas.
- There are hundreds of children and adults arriving at MSF clinics every day. Many of them need expert medical care for malnutrition, often whilst battling other severe conditions such as malaria and pneumonia.
The knit signal needs raising. The word needs spreading. We need to donate!
Donating through our usual sites takes about a week to get to MSF. If you donate through the Somalia appeal it takes two days.
I know times are tough for a lot of us at the moment, however even the smallest donation will make a difference and enable MSF to continue their excellent and life-saving work.
And if you quite rightly found the picture of Asad at the top of the blog post distressing you can see how he is after treatment by MSF on the MSF website here.
Thank you for reading this.