16 August 2004 Darfur, Sudan
Aug 17, 2004
At the mercy of the rain Twice a week, MEDECINS SANS FRONTIERES travels to Deleig, a small village in the western part of Darfur. There are currently some 20,000 refugees living there, having fled from the violence of militia loyal to the government. The mobile team has its hands full, as the refugees' problems are being further compounded by heavy rains. Stephan Grose Ruschkamp accompanied the helpers in the mobile team and the following was how he described the work of Suan Chua: One minute per child at the most. That's all the time Suan Chua can spare for each individual, as she still has more than 160 little patients in the arms of their mothers queuing up outside the nutrition centre. The nurse routinely checks to see whether they are gaining weight "on schedule", takes their temperature and sometimes their pulse. "One portion of CSB (Corn Soya Blend) for little Halima here!" she calls to her Sudanese colleagues. As they hand out the millet meal enriched with proteins and sugar, Suan Chua is already beckoning to the next mother and child to come forward. Suan Chua is trying to make up for the time lost in the morning when the cross-country vehicles got stuck in the mud caused by the heavy rains. "That's why it's particularly hectic today. But I still enjoy the work. It's terribly important that we look after the children."
Singaporean nurse Suan CHUA joined MSF in 2003. From 2003 to 2005, she participated in the MSF emergency programmes in Liberia, South Sudan and Indonesia. In December 2005, she set off to Bagh, Pakistan for Pakistan Earthquake emergency relief work.