The fire that caused 24-year-old Ibrahima’s burns and leg contractures took place on New Year’s Eve. At a time when most people are celebrating the turning of a new chapter, Ibrahima – now unable to walk - was mourning the unexpected loss of his independence and freedom.
For almost two years, Ibrahima’s burn contractures left his legs locked in place. Unable to walk, this 24-year-old had to be carried around by his family members. “Sometimes, I felt helpless, like I might really be this way forever,” he said.
Not long after surgery, Ibrahima passed a milestone – he took his first steps since his accident! Nurses and patients celebrated this victory alongside a proud Ibrahima.
Ibrahima went through months of gruelling rehab after his surgery. Relearning how to walk on his healing limbs was tough and required regular physiotherapy sessions – and a lot of patience from both Ibrahima and the tireless rehab team.
Ibrahima went from only being able to sit down, to be able to stand tall. That smile says it all: “I feel taller. I was always sitting and seeing the world from a lower level. It felt like everyone was looking down on me. Now, I'm seeing everything from high up!”
“Dancing and much celebrating are to be had at a Dress Ceremony. What a beautiful way to send home our ladies from the Women’s Health Programme.”
Complete with bright colours and lively music, the crew of the Africa Mercy recently threw a Dress Ceremony to commemorate the changed lives of a very special group of ladies. These women, who received surgery to repair their obstetric fistula condition, are not only celebrating their healing…they’re celebrating their renewed ability to be a part of their communities without shame.
We want to hear from readers about the oldest outfit in your wardrobe, and the memories you associate with it
We live in a throwaway culture, especially when it comes to fashion, but there will always be certain items of clothing that stick with us.
As the slow fashion movement and environmental awareness of the industry grows, we want to hear from readers about the oldest item of clothing you have. Where did you get it, and why have you hung onto it for so long?
Do you have an outfit that you’ve kept for years, even if it doesn’t fit quite right? Which items of clothing have survived numerous house moves and changing fashion trends? Tell us the memories you associate with the outfit and if you still wear it today.
Send us pictures of you wearing it, either from back in the day or now.
Share the memories you associate with it:
Please describe the outfit you are wearing
When and where did you get the outfit?
Why have you kept this item of clothing/outfit for so long?*
Mercy Ships is an innovative medical charity that operates the largest charity-run hospital ship in the world, delivering free, safe medical care to some of the world’s least-developed countries. We help the world’s forgotten poor, people like Baby Junior:
When Baby Junior was first brought to the Africa Mercy, his mother, Francoise was living her worst nightmare. He had been born with a cleft lip and palate that made it impossible for him to nurse properly. At three months he weighed just 4 pounds and 4 ounces – less than when he was born!
Mercy Ships medical staff immediately recognised that Baby Junior’s condition was critical. They brought him onboard the Africa Mercy immediately before the hospital was even officially opened.
Three months later, weighing a whopping 14 pounds 1 ounce, Junior was three times the baby he was when he first arrived. He was strong enough for surgery that would restore his future and reward his mother’s courageous hope.
And now, Baby Junior has reached a milestone his mother thought she would never see: his first birthday!
Globally, five billion people have no access to safe and affordable surgery when they need it. o As well as providing direct medical care on our hospital ship during ten-month field service, we implement a programme of system-strengthening and policy change across the whole country, vastly improving the medical infrastructure for generations to come.