2020 Women’s Health Kits for Refugees and Internally Displaced Women

Our shipping container arrived safely in Duhok on Sunday 27 September 2020. It was delivered to the Directorate of Health Warehouse complex in Duhok, Kurdistan.

Unpacking of the Shipping container started on Tuesday 29 September, 2020.

Vian Ahmed, Project Manager of NGO “The Lotus Flower collected 2,913 x Women’s Health kits.

The kits will be distributed through Women’s Health Workshops at Women’s Centres in 3 Refugee camps in the Duhok province.

Each Women’s Health Workshop will have about 30 women and girls participating – so it will take something like 166 workshops to completely distribute the 5,000 kits we have now shipped to Kurdistan.

See photo (below) of the training courses currently being undertaken by all of the presenters who will conduct the Women’s Health Workshops. These women are chosen because of their leadership skills and most are women who were in ISIS captivity. They include widows with children and young single women.

See photos (below) showing collection of 88 bags containing 2,913 x Women’s Health Kits on Tuesday 29 September 2020 by Vian Ahmed for delivery to the camps in readiness for the Women’s Health Workshops to commence December 2020.

Thank you to each person who donated financially towards the cost of our shipping container project which has assisted thousands of Refugees and Internally Displaced people. The projects of Operation Hope Australia Ltd are totally reliant on your generous donations.

Thank you to “Days for girls” chapters in New South Wales and Queensland in Australia who made and supplied the kits for free.

Thank you Vian Ahmed and the team at “The Lotus Flower” for training presenters and implementing Womens Health Workshops across 3 Refugee camps in the Duhok province in Kurdistan.

Thank you to the staff at the Directorate of Health in Duhok for assisting with distribution of items in the container.

#Independance #Dignity #Confidence #RefugeeWomen #InternallyDisplacedWomen

2020 Shipping Container Project

All finished – feeling very happy as we close the door on the shipping container.

The 40 ft container was collected earlier this week and it will be shipped from Botany Bay in Sydney early next week.

Arrival is expected into Duhok, Kurdistan by mid September.

The value of the medical equipment (replaced as new) is $A1.7 million Australian dollars.

Contents will be distributed as follows:

  • Medical equipment to Directorate of Health, Duhok for distribution into their 11 hospitals in the Duhok province. Duhok Province was chosen because it houses the most Refugeees and Internally Displaced People in Kurdistan.
  • Medical books and Journals to The College of Medicine in Mosul.
  • 2,913 x “Womens Health Kits” to NGO The Lotus Flower. The kits will be distributed during Womens Health Workshops in 3 Refugee camps where The Lotus flower have women’s centres. Beneficiaries will be women and girls from the camps.
  • Medical equipment donated specifically for use in Sinjar Hospital. Sinjar is the city in Iraq where ISIS committed genocide of the Yazidi people in 2014. The displaced Yazidi’s fled to Kurdistan and have been living in refugee camps for 6 years.

From the photos attached (below) you can see that many people from many organisations from many towns were involved in donating the medical equipment, donating medical books and journals, making the women’s health kits, donating financially and either collecting/delivering the items. Thank you to everyone who helped out in some way – it truly has been a team effort.

If you would like to contribute to the outstanding shipping costs and transportation then we would love to receive your contributions:

  1. Go to our webpage: www.operationhopeaustralia.com and hit the DONATE button OR
  2. Make a deposit to our Australian Bank Account as follows: Account Name: Operation Hope Australia Pty Ltd BSB: 034 087 Account Number: 045791 Bank & Branch:Westpac Banking Corporation, Sherwood Branch, Queensland, Australia.

2020 Shipping Container to Kurdistan

Project Update:

There has been significant progress in filling the 40ft Container with Medical equipment and Women’s Health kits. We hope to have the container on the sea in July heading to Kurdistan. The medical equipment will be distributed throughout hospitals in the Duhok province. The equipment will assist Kurdish residents, Syrian Refugees and Yazidi Displaced people seeking surgery or treatment. The Women’s Health kits will be distributed to women and girls in 3 Refugee Camps by NGO The Lotus Flower. See contents list of shipping container at the end of this report.

We need your help with financial donations:

Due to COVID restrictions our fundraising opportunities have significantly declined. 

Can you help by making a donation to assist in the shipping costs to get the equipment and health kits into Kurdistan?

Donations can be made as follows:

  1. Go to the home page of this website and click the DONATE button
  2. Make a deposit online or at any Westpac Bank as follows: Account Name: Operation Hope Australia Ltd BSB number : 034 087 Account Number: 04 5791
  3. Make a deposit from overseas using IBAN SWIFT Code: WPACAU2S for Westpac Banking Corporation, Sherwood Branch, Queensland.

Donations are tax deductible

Contents of shipping container include:

  • 3 x Hospital Beds
  • 2 x Theatre microscopes
  • 2 x I Beds for Theatre Patients
  • 1 x Baby hospital crib
  • 1 x Infant intensive care unit
  • 1 x transportable humidicrib
  • 1 x physiotherapy unit to assist in Orthopaedic surgery
  • 5 x anaesthetic machines
  • wheelchairs – both for infant and adults and 1 electric
  • 56 x Intravenous Pumps with hundreds of consumables
  • 5 Defibrillators
  • 1 x ECG
  • 6 x Patient monitors
  • Standup Patient mover
  • IV stands
  • Blood fridge
  • 8 x Video Otoscopes
  • 1 x Oxygen Concentrator
  • 2 x Display monitors for theatre
  • 1 x emergency ventilator
  • 1 x Tourniquet inflater and cuffs
  • single use Resuscitator sets
  • walking and mobility aides
  • 2,745 x Women’s Hygiene kits for disribution in an education program in 3 refugee camps
  • Medical books and journals for the College of Medicine in Mosul
  • Medical equipment for Sinjar hospital in Iraq

2019 Women’s Health Workshops

Operation Hope received 2,200 women’s health kits, from some of the NSW & Qld chapters of the International organisation “Days for Girls”, and included these kits in our first shipping container project to Iraq. The kits arrived in March 2019 and following a fund-raising event during refugee week in June 2019, $3777.00 was sent to the Lotus Flower to help support the start of the workshops.

These kits are distributed in Women’s & Girls Health Workshops run by NGO “The Lotus Flower”. The participants in the 3 – 4 hour workshops are the traumatised women and girls who are either refugees or internally displaced women living in the massive tent camps in Kurdistan. A local Coordinator will oversee and train local women from the camps, who will present the workshops in their native language.

The presenters will each receive a salary which will bring financial stability and independence for them. Long term the workshops will continue using women’s health kits made by the women (often widows and/or recently released by ISIS) who work in “The Lotus Flower” sewing groups in the camps. These workshops and distribution of the kits provide a sustainable long term employment program for many women and give education, dignity and independence to many women and girls. Operation Hope is financially supporting the workshops. Thank you to those who have donated to this wonderful project.

2019 Interview with SBS Kurdish

Click below to listen to interview with Erica Henley, Founder and Chairwoman of Operation Hope Australia with SBS Kurdish (in english)

“I am a very ordinary woman who has been fortunate enough to be able to participate in some extraordinary projects.  I live in Newcastle, I am married and have two adult sons.”

By

Mayada Kordy Khalil

Published on

Sunday, May 12, 2019 – 15:33

File size

20.54 MB

Duration

11 min 13 sec

Erica Henley is an advocate for human rights, especially for those who have been internally displaced within their homeland or have had to flee their war torn country as asylum seekers or refugees.

She continually feels the call to help those who have experienced trauma and tragedy through war and genocide.

fullsizeoutput_5bf4(Shopping at the markets at the camp to buy fabric for the women’s sewing groups)

“I love that I am in a position where I can actually help and make a small difference in the lives of these people who have suffered extreme trauma and tragedy.”

Ms Henley is a humanitarian volunteer – which means her volunteering work has included assisting teaching english in the camp schools, administration, fundraising and organising groups of volunteers.

fullsizeoutput_5cbe (40ft shipping container sailed from Sydney in early December 2018)

Since 2016 she’s volunteered in Greece and Iraq in the camps for refugees and internally displaced people.

“The relationships and friendships that are built are just beautiful,” Ms. Henley told SBS Kurdish.

Ms. Henley is the founder and chairwoman of a not for profit organisation called Operation Hope Australia Ltd which was successfully registered in NSW in 2018 as a charity and a benevolent institution.

fullsizeoutput_5318(Humanitarian volunteer teaching English in Kurdistan, Northern Iraq 2018)

“I reflect on what we have been able to achieve in the last three years as a tiny little charity, we are now registered and raised close to $100,000 in three years,” said Ms. Henley.

In March this year Erica Henley and her husband travelled to Kurdistan Region, Iraq to gain release of their 40ft shipping container filled with aid, out of customs in Kurdistan, transported into a camp then unpacked ready for distribution of the medical equipment to 12 hospitals in Syria and Kurdistan Region and aid to displaced people and refugees in seven camps in the Duhok province.

fullsizeoutput_52c2(Kim Henley sorting some of the medical equipment)

“I have led small teams of Australian volunteers to Greece in 2016, and Kurdistan Region, Iraq in 2017 & 2018.   It is hard to try and imagine and come to terms with what these people have suffered,” Ms Henley said.

#OperationHopeAustralia
#Bringinghopeandhealing