The parents who had succumbed to the disease left their orphaned children, many of whom were infected at birth and died on the streets without any medical assistance.
This experience - witnessing the inactivity and silence that caused the death of thousands of people - was part of what motivated young Slovaks to create an effective and flexible system of health and humanitarian aid. They were frustrated and outraged by the inability of large organizations to immediately help and provide life-saving treatment to people in Cambodia, despite it being available worldwide at that time.
MAGNA was founded not only to provide assistance in disasters and conflicts, but also to talk about what we see. We believe that silence can kill. We hope that by revealing injustice we can help put an end to it.
Testimony, talking about people's fate and willingness to help them formed the basis for the creation of MAGNA. Today it is still the basis of what we do. We treat and, at the same time, document the fate of disaster victims - bringing pictorial and written testimonies from forgotten parts of the world that would otherwise not reach the general public at all.