Project: Promotion of health
Responsible body: Friends Without A Border
Sponsorship since: 2016
The founding story of the Lao Friendship Hospital for Children is a very special one. In 1993, Japanese photographer Kenro Izu was in Siem Riep, Cambodia, for contracted project. A young girl died before his eyes, as her family was unable to pay the medical expenses for her treatment. After this shocking experience, he committed to the support of the health system in Southeast Asia. In 1996 he founded the non-profit organization Friends Without A Border (FWAB) and in 1999, the Angkor Children’s Hospital (ACH) in Siem Riep, Cambodia, followed, which successfully introduced the “Treatment + Education + Prevention” model.
To date, the ACH has treated more than 1.6 million children free of charge and set new medical standards in Cambodia.
In 2014, FWAB finally opened the Lao Friends Hospital for Children (LFHC) in Luang Prabang, Laos. It is the first children’s hospital in the region with the only newborn station.
With an annual budget of $ 1.5 million, the LFHC operates a 25-bed hospital with a surgery, a neonatal station, an ambulance and an educational program. A mobile task force is also traveling to remote areas to ensure the health of children in the villages and offer basic health education for parents. Every year, the LFHC looks after and treats nearly 20,000 patients – every dollar supports the necessary treatment for children, as even harmless injuries or infections without medical care can quickly affect or even endanger a child’s life.
“I was deeply shaken by a movie about the consequences of the Vietnam War, which I watched at the Uxo Information Center in Luang Prabang. In terms of population and area, Laos was the most bombed country during the Vietnam War. Even today, countless small bombs are scattered in the landscape and every day farmers and playing children are seriously injured. During his visit in November 2016, President Obama signed a statement confirming that the US is providing $ 90 million to finance the defuse of these explosives. So there is hope that these bombs will no longer harm people!
Moved by this brutality, which even after 40 years is still part of the everyday life of so many people, I came across the Visitor Center of the Children’s Hospital. When I saw films and photos there, and read reports about the daily work and history of the hospital, I was immediately determined that Moving Child should get involved.”
Moving Child supports the LFHC with annual financial contributions.
While Anna and Gertraud visited the Children’s Hospital in Luang Prabang, they had the spontaneous idea of making a gift to the children of boxes of colored pencils and drawing pads bearing the name and logo of the Children’s Hospital. The children happily accepted the gift and use the materials for drawing.
One reason behind this idea was to enable the children to express themselves in a creative and emotional way. On the other hand – because such gifts are very special for the children – they proudly take home the pencils and pads with the printed logos and addresses. Thus, the possibility of free medical treatment for sick and injured children is advertised beyond Luang Prabang even into remote areas.
Continue to the next Moving Child health project.
Back to project overview.