CROATIA, Slavonski Brod, 2015 | MAGNA nurse explains mother how to feed her child. Copyright by Martin Bandžák/MAGNA
MAGNA medical team has been working in Croatia since September continues to deliver medical care to children and their fleeing families, who come through the winter transit camp in Slavonski Brod. The team constitutes from doctors, nurses, experts on nutrition and psychosocial help that daily takes care of thousands of people running away.
Thousands of refugees still come every day through the balcan way (app. 3000 this week), which makes Croatia as a real entrance to EU. In Slavonski Brod, the transit camp, people get registered and stay only couple of hours as they take the train to Slovenia. From overall number of people is 40% of children. Those are often lonely mothers with some couple of children without husband to whom this route is extremly demanding. Considering the weather, children and adults suffer from respiratory diseases, they have high temperature, flu and diarrhea. Despite of this they want to continue on the way.
Medical team MAGNA has ambulance in tent directly behind registration and makes the most, so the children in need may survive this challenging journey. MAGNA daily takes care of hundreds of patients. It is inevitable for health, to ensure children in humanitarian crisis adequate nourishment – MAGNA health workers distribute complex nurture, milk substitutes and baby formulas to children according to their age and condition. Naturally they try to support breastfeeding, because it is the safest way to secure food during long and exhausting course. While providing health care it is important to understand the language and gain trust of patients even if we do not know their language and the translator is on his way. Fleeing people are mostly speaking arabic, kurdish, farsi and other languages as well. Joud, MAGNA expert on psychosocial aid is a Syrian refugee as well, who studied in Poland. He helps not only MAGNA workers, but to colleagues of other organizations as well. He helps to communicate in such situations – to understand, know couple of words, find better way to console, to estimate situation and help.
Since the beginning of the migrant crisis, 600 000 people have come through Croatia. 310 000 from those have come through refugee centre in Slavonski Brod where we operate. Slovak humanitarian organization MAGNA reacted from the start of refugee crisis in Europe on acute needs of fleeing people. From September onwards we secured medical, nutritional and psychosocial care in Hungary, later on serbia-croatian borders in refugee camp Opatovac. MAGNA operates not only in Croatia, but works on development of medical projects in countries which are closer to the centre of conflict. It is reconsiders actual needs in medical care, sexual based violence prevention and psychosocial help.