To mark 50 years of providing medical humanitarian aid people in need, Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) is showing an exhibition of photographs that celebrates humanity and the resilience of its patients and staff.
The theme of the photo exhibition is ‘50 Years of Humanity’ and gives a glimpse into the work of MSF’s work over half a century by telling the stories of MSF staff and patients from around the world.
Residents of Kano city in northern Nigeria will be able to visit the exhibition this Saturday 29 January and Sunday 30 January at Ado Bayero Mall on Zoo Road. Visitors can join guided tours conducted by MSF staff, giving them a unique insight into the work of MSF within Kano state and beyond.
Nigeria holds a special place in MSF’s history, as this is where the idea of the organization first came into being. In the late 1960s, a group of young French doctors returned from Nigeria, joined with some select journalists, and founded the international medical humanitarian organization in 1971. MSF now has close to 65,000 staff and works in more than 70 countries across the world.
“With this exhibition, we are not only commemorating our anniversary, but also reaffirming our continued commitment to the people of Nigeria,” said Simba Tirima, MSF’s country representative in Nigeria.
MSF’s work in Nigeria ranges from treating cholera patients to assisting people displaced from their homes; from supporting the survivors of sexual violence to providing reconstructive surgery at Nigeria’s only hospital dedicated to the neglected disease noma. “We also respond to other emergencies across the country, and support primary, paediatric and maternal healthcare in the areas most in need,” says Tirima.
MSF teams have been working in Kano state since 2020, after a break of 18 years, to support the response to COVID-19. “Since our return, MSF has drawn upon the spirit of humanity and solidarity to support the state’s Ministry of Health in tackling the ravaging pandemic of COVID-19, as well as offering maternity and outpatient services, and setting up dedicated Cholera Treatment Centre during the recent outbreak” says MSF project coordinator Issack Dahiye. “We hope this exhibition will be an opportunity for the people and communities of Kano to learn more about MSF’s work and to engage directly with the staff who deliver our lifesaving work.”
The photo exhibition opened in Abuja in mid-December, where more than 600 people saw it at the Jabi Lake Mall and Jabi Recreational Park over the course of two weekends, and is currently on tour around the country. In mid-January it visited Maiduguri, the capital of Borno state, where it was on show at the Nilefa Kiji Nutritional Feeding Centre, where MSF treats children suffering from severe malnutrition.
After Kano state, the photo exhibition will move on to Sokoto noma hospital in Sokoto state, followed by other MSF project locations across Nigeria.
MSF teams have been providing medical and humanitarian assistance in Nigeria since 1971 and MSF has had a continuous presence in the country since 1996. Today, MSF runs projects in nine states: Benue, Borno, Ebonyi, Jigawa, Kano, Katsina, Rivers, Sokoto and Zamfara.