10 Dec 19 20 Dec 19

Send a Christmas message to our staff

This December, our teams will be using their expert skills in the places where they're most needed.

Show your support by sending them a message this Christmas. Your message of goodwill will be put up in the team's office for all MSF staff in the project to see.

Chris Hook

Dr Chris Hook is an emergency medical doctor working in the MSF Emergency Team. The Emergency Team is made up of experienced MSF staff who are on call to respond rapidly to crises across the globe. When there’s an emergency, we aim to get them on a plane within 24 hours, even if it's at Christmas!

What's it like spending Christmas with MSF?

"We try to make it as much like Christmas as we can. We often have a 'Secret Santa' between the staff, or we’ll try and have a nice big dinner.

"I think the thing that always surprises me is how much people locally will engage with it. We work in many Islamic regions but the local people will celebrate with you and try to help you have a nice Christmas. They know it’s a special day for lots of us, and often give us gifts or delicious meals!"

Do you have any special memories of working for MSF at Christmas?

"I remember being on call one Christmas Eve in South Sudan. At about 8pm a very sick newborn baby was brought in.

"Baby Anonate had stopped breathing, he was very cold and had low blood sugar – it was clear he had an infection. We worked all night to keep this little baby alive, keeping his sugar levels up, ensuring he was warm enough and trying to get antibiotics into him so they could take effect.

"It was a long night. At 6pm on Christmas morning I was still with him. It was so nice to see him breathing on his own and to see the joy on his mother's face."


Aïssa Edon

Midwife Aïssa Edon is spending this Christmas as part of MSF's Ebola response team in Mambasa, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

Aissa will be managing a team of local midwives working to bring babies into the world safely, in a province that has been at the centre of the current outbreak.

This isn't Aissa's first time in the DRC. As a fluent French speaker, she's worked there before for MSF, and there are several baby Aissas named after her from her previous posting.

What do you normally do at Christmas?

I used to have a family dinner and celebration. But for the last few years I’ve been working at Christmas. Being a midwife, babies are born at any time, so we don’t really have a break!

Do you have any special memories of working for MSF at Christmas?

In 2017, I spent Christmas in Democratic Republic of Congo and it was amazing! We celebrated Christmas five times, which was quite funny. It was a big celebration with several dinners and exchanging lots of presents. I expect this year to be kind of the same!


Natasha Lewer

Natasha Lewer has worked for MSF for eight years as an editor and communications specialist including stints in Kenya, Uganda, India, Sierra Leone, Holland, Greece, Jordan, Turkey and Bangladesh.

What do you normally do at Christmas?

"Usually I spend christmas in North London with my two almost-grown-up children, my parents, sister, brother and nephews. Generally it involves a muddy game of frisbee in the park before lunch, and an evening of ancient family photos and the card game 'racing demon' – plus lots of delicious food of course."

What are doing this year with MSF?

"This year I'll be spending Christmas on the Ocean Viking – a search and rescue boat operated jointly by MSF and SOS MEDITERRANEE – somewhere in the Central Mediterranean.

"I'll be on board for three or four weeks, as the team rescues people from boats in distress and provides them with medical care, food and dry clothes. We'll then bring them to a place of safety.

"I've never been at sea for longer than a ferry trip across the Channel and I'm really hoping I won't get seasick!"


Duncan, standing in the women’s shelter with backdrop picture of ship.Natasha isn't the only Brit on our seach and rescue boatDuncan Stokoe, MSF logisitican will also be on the Mediterranean Sea over Christmas.

What are doing this year with MSF?

"Hi, my name’s Duncan Stokoe and I’m the logistician on the Ocean Viking. 

"I’m never really in the same place for Christmas, but this Christmas I’ll be out on the sea, helping people in distress fleeing Libya."


Send a message!

Send a Christmas message to one of our staff members and their teams. They'll hugely appreciate your support over the festive season.

We'll only send you an email receipt that we received your message and a thank you message when our staff get back from their projects.

You won't be signed up to our newsletter or appeal mailing list.

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