Medical Teams International | Official Blog

Stories of hope, health and lives transformed.

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  • NEPAL SNAPSHOT: After Quake, Orphans Return Outside.

    by Tyler Graf | May 13, 2015

    Nepal is a country on edge.

    For the second time in less than three weeks, people have taken to the streets to sleep. Buildings have been destroyed. People have died.

    Tuesday’s 7.4-magnitude quake dashed hopes that the aftershocks were over and that Nepal could rebuild in earnest. People remain nervous about where and how to live – whether they should gamble on returning inside, or brave the elements outside.

    Many of Nepal’s young people, however, are trying to make the best out of a tense situation.

    At the ROKPA Children’s Home, an orphanage in Kathmandu, the kids have shown amazing resolve in the face of a difficult situation. The orphanage is run by a nonprofit organization that also runs the guesthouse that serves as Medical Teams International’s in-country base.

    ROKPA post-quake orphans Kathmandu
    The orphans of ROKPA Chidren's Home camp outside following Tuesday's quake in Nepal.

    After Tuesday’s quake, the children were rushed from next door to ROKPA Guesthouse’s backyard, where tents and cooking stations were quickly arranged. This was a repeat of what happened after the April 25 earthquake, when the kids were forced to do the same thing.

    MTI was privileged to meet some of these kids, whose smiles masked the anxiety they expressed. When asked how she felt when the earthquake struck, 14-year-old Sabida said, “We thought we’d die.”

    Post-Kathmandu quake ROKPA2 Nepal orphans
    Sabida, right, and her friends said the second earthquake scared them almost as much as the first.

    They feel safer outside, even if life there is an inconvenience. The kids try to find fun things to do. They mingle a little with the guests of the hotel, including members of MTI’s team, sing songs and generally horse around.

    Like thousands in Nepal, it will be their second time in a short period living outside because of unease. Safety, security and good health are all uncertainties. Despite all of that, they maintain a positive attitude, even when the answer to the question of “When do you think you’ll return to the home?” is “I don’t know.”

    For the past two weeks, MTI has been conducting health assessments throughout the rural areas of Nepal. We plan on continuing our work in the long term and having a lasting presence in the country. Your donations matter greatly in keeping the people healthy and happy.

  • UPDATE NEPAL: Powerful 7.4 Quake Stirs Anxiety

    by Tyler Graf | May 12, 2015

    Nepal earthquake Kathmandu update
    Another strong earthquake strikes Nepal.

    A strong, 7.4-magnitude earthquake  in Kathmandu Tuesday afternoon sent buildings swaying, an unwelcome reminder that the earthquake threat is not over in Nepal.

    According to early reports, at least 32 people died as a result of the quake. It came just three weeks after a 7.9-magnitude temblor hit the country, killing more than 8,000 people.

    According to the United States Geological Survey, the quake’s epicenter was roughly 50 miles east of the capital in Kathmandu, near the China border. In Kathmandu, the quake sent buildings swaying and rubble flying from high atop structures. People fled buildings and rushed the streets as the minute-long earthquake rumbled. Several were heard praying and wondering aloud about loved ones.

    Medical Teams International has had a team on the ground for more than two weeks. They are all accounted for and safe. MTI will continue its mission of assessing rural health needs and treating earthquake-related injuries and illnesses.

    On Wednesday, MTI will send two urgent assessment teams to affected areas. These will be remote and mountainous areas that were, even before the latest quake, deemed worthy of further assessments. Follow MTI's blog, website and Twitter account (@medteams) for updates.

    You can also donate to MTI's relief efforts in Nepal.
  • Ebola Free Day: Official Celebration in Liberia!

    by Katie Carroll | May 11, 2015


    Today Liberians celebrated "Ebola Free Day!"  Our field office captured celebratory photos from the Centennial Memorial Pavilion in Monrovia.  On May 9, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared Liberia free of the deadly Ebola virus.  This date marked 42 days with Liberia not reporting any cases since the last burial on March 28.

    Liberia was the first country to report an Ebola case, and reported the highest number of deaths in the largest, longest and most complex outbreak since Ebola first emerged in 1976.  According to the WHO, there were more than 3,000 confirmed Ebola cases in Liberia, and 7,400 suspected or probable cases, with more than 4,700 deaths estimated to have occurred since the outbreak was declared in March 2014. A total of 378 healthcare workers became infected; while at least 192 died of the virus.

    Your gifts to our Ebola response program played a critical role in today's success. Thank you!

    The smiles on the faces of people in Monrovia today on this EBOLA FREE DAY reflects their gratitude. The people of Liberia expressed their thankfulness to you - friends around the world who helped them in their time of need - in different ways: through traditional music, street parades, gospel songs and the President’s big thank you speech.






    UPDATE 7/2/15: New cases of Ebola are reported in Liberia. Learn more.
  • Earthquake Photos: In search of those in need.

    by Katie Carroll | May 06, 2015

    Field photos from our volunteer nurse Sharon Tissell as her and the team head to remote regions of Nepal to help those in need of medical care.  Thank you for your support of our earthquake response program.

    near-chaku-nepal-disaster-response Driving through the destruction near Chaku.

    children-nepal-earthquake-response With so much of their belongings destroyed, little boys play with homemade "cars."

    earthquake-victims The team encounters this mother & child as they head to remote regions of Nepal.

    Suspension-Bridge-nepal The many suspension bridges across the Bhote Kosi river are still being used post earthquake. They are the only means across this ravine which is up to 160 meters deep.

    nepal-quake-anika-higyhwaDevastating landslides demolish this whole town along the Anika highway.

  • GiveBig Thank You: Best year ever!

    by Katie Carroll | May 06, 2015

    THANK YOU! This year's GiveBig was our best year ever!

    ‪Yesterday was GiveBig‬, a one-day online giving event to support and celebrate organizations working in the Seattle community.  Every year, we join together to share our mission and help even more people in need. Thanks to a pool of matching sponsors, every gift donated to MTI through the Seattle Foundation's website is matched!  Plus, this year, we were also offered a $5k matching grant from the Seattle International Foundation.  

    Your gifts yesterday will be multiplied to provide life-changing medical care to even more people in their hour of need! Thank you for your compassion and generosity. You are making a difference.