The News International, May 28, 2002

Welfare Hospital for Afghan refugee women and children inaugurated

Afshan Shiraz Khan

RAWALPINDI: The plight of sick Afghan refugee women and children is being addressed to some extent as an NGO, Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA) with the help of Afghan Women's Mission inaugurated Malali Hospital in Rawalpindi. The hospital is situated near Khayaban-e-Sir Syed and is operated since the last six months. The hospital was officially inaugurated by President Afghan Women's Mission Mr. Steve Penners here on Monday.

Speaking at the occasion to mostly Afghani women and children Steve Penners said, 'This is just the beginning and the establishment of this hospital has opened the doors to the mission we have to achieve. We have other things in mind also which will soon materialise with the help of our organisation and friends'.

'Desperate, Sick, desolated, merely in shambles Afghan women and children have some hope now to look up to their basic health facilities. We have just tried to bring some relieve in their displaced life. The children with severe dehyration, malnutrition, malaria, typhoid, and diarrhea come to hospital for their free treatment where both male and female doctors redress their ailments,' he said. Also present on the occasion was Dr. Leo D. Lagasse M.D. a supporter of RAWA.

The founding members of RAWA first established the hospital in Quetta in1986 where Afghan women and children visited the hospital from Kandahar, Kabul, eastern and southern provinces of Afghanistan. The hospital carried on for 10 years before closing down from severe financial problems. RAWA once again revived the hospital, now in Rawalpindi and all the treatments provided in the hospital are free of charge. The 25 bed Malali hospital is providing the facilities of OPD, IPD, Operation Theatre, Gynae section and Delivery Room, X-Ray, Ultrasound, ECG, Laboratory and ambulance service.

The government besides several NGOs has looked after the health and other problems faced by Afghan Refugees, now as the Afghanis are migrating to their homeland, Pakistan is providing funds for their rehabilitation also.

The Nation, May 28, 2002

Free hospital for Afghan women, children reopens

By Rauf Arif

RAWALPINDI- The re-opening ceremony of "Malalai Hospital" for providing free health facilities to the Afghan women and children, was held here on Monday.

The hospital, is part of the projects of the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA), for the improvement of Afghan women and children, started functioning almost six months ago but was formally inaugurated by Steve Penners, one of the main donors of the hospital and Dr. Legasse, the famous physician of USA.

It is a 25 bed hospital with a medical staff of 20 persons which includes five doctors and 8 nurses.

Almost all basic wards and facilities such as OPD, Operation Theater, X-rays machine, ultrasound, ECG, laboratory for blood tests and two ambulances services had been provided to the hospital.

The doctors of the hospital informed that the ratio of child patients is more than that of the adults and usually these children are found to be victims of several diseases such as malaria, typhoid, diarrhea, dysentery etc. which are basically related to malnutrition.

Earlier, while talking to the journalists, a member of RAWA told that about 10 years ago the hospital was established in Quetta by Meena, the founder of Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA) which provided free treatment to hundreds of Afghan refugees there.

Mr. Steve Penners inaugurates the hospital.
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"But in 1996, the services of this hospital, was closed down due to shortage of funds and hundreds of people had to suffer from the closing of this hospital who approached us and forced us to reopen this hospital," she said.

She added, "We, through our website contacted world's donor agencies and on getting financial support, re-opened the same hospital here in Rawalpindi which is now providing free services to almost 150-200 patients daily."

She said that most of the aid for this hospital came after the incident of September 11th.

Later, during his speech, Steve Penners said that the hospital will prove very helpful in improving the living conditions of Afghan women and children.

He added that in future this hospital would be further improved so that maximum people could get better treatment.

Dr Leggassi appreciated the health services which were being provided by the hospital. He said that all human being throughout the world have equal rights of survival and it is our duty to work for the betterment of human being.

The Pakistan Observer, May 28, 2002

Hospital for Afghans inaugurated


RAWALPINDI- Steve Penners President Afghan Women Mission (AWM)- a Los Angeles based NGO- on Monday said that his organization was endeavoring to end sufferings of the Afghan women.

He was speaking at the inauguration ceremony of Malalai Hospital established by Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA) here at Khayaban-i-Sir Syed.

He appreciated the services being rendered by RAWA to raise the status of Afghan women.

Steve Penners told that his NOG is also working on other projects for Afghan women such as education, relief, food and orphanage.

Speaking on the occasion Dr. Leo Lagasse (also from the US) said that medical treatment is a basic right and he was impressed to see such a hospital for Afghan refugees in Pindi.

He said he would revisit Pakistan with a team of US doctors who will treat patients at this hospital.

Member Foreign Committee of RAWA Sehar Saba, two doctors, a nurse and some patients also spoke on the occasion.

Later Steve Penners and Dr Leo Lagasse had a round of the hospital during which they met the patients and took stock of the facilities.

This hospital which earlier worked in Quetta during 1986-1996 has restarted in Rawalpindi with the main help of AWM.

The Quetta hospital was established by founding leader of RAWA, Meena who was later assassinated there.

The hospital has been named after Malalai, an Afghan women who was martyred during the unsuccessful British invasion of Afghanistan.

The 25 bed hospital established for women and children is visited by about 250 patients daily.

The hospital, which has five doctors and eight nurses, provides its services totally free of cost.

It has got two ambulances besides facilities like dressing room, labor room, x-ray department and ultrasound etc.

It has been established in a rented building, with cost of US$300,000.

HELP US run Malalai Hospital in Pakistan

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