There have been a lot of heated conversations around refugees, everywhere in the world.
Let’s all “change places“ and put ourselves in the situation of refugees, having left behind everything– their homes, family members, friends, and belongings in search of a safe haven. I am sure it is a threatening idea, but it can happen to any of us. Peace is not to be taken not for granted.
As doctors, we care about the health and well-being of our patients, regardless of their socio-economic, ethnic background, race, gender, nationality, or religion. Refugees are the same as any of our patients back home. The only difference is that they are much more vulnerable.
It is not only a responsibility. It is a privilege to serve those in need.
Within one year, I volunteered with SAMS on two medical missions to Jordan, and will be joining them again next month. I can hardly express the joy and satisfaction I experienced and the breadth of knowledge and experiences that I acquired during these missions. When we see and treat patients in one of the facilities in Jordan or elsewhere it is not about “refugees,” a vague and anonymous group of people far away. It is about faces and names, about the Ahmads, Arwas, and Mohammeds we meet. It is about those individuals with unique stories of hardships, resilience, hopes, and dreams.
We know that by volunteering, we can not move mountains, and we cannot wipe away all their pains. However, we can alleviate their suffering and address their health problems.
[Read full article by Dr. Bettina Seitz, Volunteer for Syrian American Medical Society Foundation]