A noble mission

Augusta Victoria Hospital (AVH) on the Mount of Olives is a Lutheran World Federation sponsored program. AVH has been a significant Lutheran presence in Jerusalem for nearly seventy years. The facility treats patients from the West Bank and Gaza in a variety of specialty health care fields. AVH CEO, Dr. Tawfiq Nasser reports what volunteer medical teams from AVH are finding during their humanitarian visits in Gaza.

From Gaza our team writes:

07:30 am:

The ambulances kept arriving last night, shelling shuddering the still air of Gaza. Fifteen dead, and over 50 injured arrive. There are people sleeping all around us in the hospital, on the floors, in the corridors, homeless, hopeless, with no families.

Volunteers in the hospital do nothing but mop split blood covering the floors. The smell of blood is the only odor. The atmosphere is overwhelming as you encounter the massive stories of sorrow, pain and loss. But our presence with them and next to them gives us a sense of strength and fulfillment.

A lady approaches us who knows AVH well , her son is on dialysis and was treated at AVH. The child is having kidney problems, and is in the hospital. Her brother and his three sons are war injured, she is here attending to them and to her sick son. Next to them in the ICU lays their uncle who is also injured and lost his 7 children to this cruel war.

07:40 am: in 10 minutes we lived a human tragedy you do not encounter in a lifetime.

Today, two of our doctors are in Khan Younes south of the Strip, heavy engagement, shelling, bombing. We are attending to 11 severely injured casualties in the ICU at Nasser Hospital but cannot move them anywhere. It is too dangerous.

In the hospital:
Two casualties await yet another surgery, one of them a 19 year old and the other is a 37 year old lady whose father was a cancer patient at AVH. A 9 year old boy is in the ICU attended by our pediatric surgeon. A new case arrives today.

Pharmacy, finance, and staff volunteers prepare another load of medications to go to Gaza awaiting coordination to cross the border. In the meantime, more staff are calling the Director of Nursing requesting to volunteer.

This is a snapshot of AVH and its staff in Jerusalem, fulfilling the noblest mission to the poor and oppressed as a flagship program of the Lutheran World Federation in the war-torn occupied Palestine.

You can help Augusta Victoria Hospital in its response to this humanitarian crisis. Donate today.

Tom Brook
Community Relations Director

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