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September 19, 2012
MSF Ireland Week

Tents, films and photography – just some of the things that will feature in the first ever MSF Ireland Week, which runs from 23rd to 30th September 2012. DHR Communications has been busy preparing for the week, and is now excited to let you know about the events being held around the country that will aim to raise awareness of the work of Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and of the contribution made by Irish volunteers to MSF’s work in nearly 70 countries worldwide.

MSF was founded by doctors and journalists in 1971 and is now providing medical humanitarian aid in countries around the globe.  The Irish office of MSF opened in 2006.  Since then Irish volunteers – including doctors, nurses, accountants, logisticians, and human resources specialists – have departed on more than 100 missions, from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe.

Pictured at the launch of the first ever MSF Ireland Week, which will run from 23rd to 30th September, was Jane-Ann McKenna, Head of MSF Ireland. Pic: Maxwell’s

The highlights of MSF Ireland Week include:

Taking Action. Saving Lives

The week-long programme of events begins with the official opening of the unique ‘Taking Action. Saving Lives’ photography exhibition from award-winning film-maker Michael Lavelle (best known for his work on the hit film ‘His and Hers’), comprising of images taken during his visit to an MSF clinic in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The ‘Taking Action. Saving Lives’ exhibition will run in the Powerscourt Centre, 59 South William Street, Dublin 2, and Fixx Coffeehouse, 13-17 Dawson Street, Dublin 2, throughout MSF Ireland Week, and photographs of Irish MSF volunteers will also be on display.  The exhibition will be officially opened by popular columnist Roisin Ingle at a public event in the Powerscourt Centre this coming Sunday (23.09.12) at 12 noon. Admission to the exhibition and its public opening is FREE.

MSF Cholera Tent Roadshow

As part of MSF Ireland Week, MSF is bringing a simulated cholera treatment centre on tour around Ireland. Visitors can experience the exact type of treatment centre used in real-life crises such as recent cholera outbreaks in Haiti, Pakistan and Zimbabwe. Treatment beds and equipment will be on display, along with iPads on which visitors can engage with video footage from MSF projects around the world. The cholera tent will be staffed by MSF volunteers, who will share their first-hand experiences of working overseas with MSF.

All are welcome to visit the MSF Cholera Tent when it comes to an area near you during MSF Ireland Week.  The tent will make its way to Trinity College Dublin on Monday 24th; University College Cork on Tuesday 25th; NUI Galway on Thursday 27th and the Blanchardstown Shopping Centre, Dublin, on Saturday 29th and Sunday 30th September.

Free Film Screenings

The week will also see the screening of two films, both highlighting the lifesaving work of MSF. The award-winning documentary ‘Living in Emergency‘, filmed in the war zones of Liberia and Congo, follows four MSF volunteers as they struggle to provide emergency medical care under extreme conditions. With different levels of experience, each volunteer must find their own way to face the challenges, the tough choices, and the limits of their idealism.  This insightful film on the complex challenges of humanitarian aid work will be screened in the Lighthouse Cinema, Smithfield, Dublin 7, on Tuesday, 25th September, at 7pm. Admission is FREE but registration is required – please email kelly@dhr.ie to register.

Another highlight of MSF Ireland Week will be the European premiere of ‘Access to the Danger Zone’, a new documentary, narrated by Daniel Day-Lewis, which follows the work of MSF in Kenya, Afghanistan, Somalia and the Democratic Republic of Congo.  President Michael D. Higgins will be the guest of honour at the premiere screening on Wednesday, 26th September, at the Lighthouse Cinema, Smithfield, Dublin 7, at 7pm. This is a private screening, and will be followed by a panel discussion chaired by Newstalk presenter Dil Wickremasinghe.

For more information about the events taking place during MSF Ireland Week, please see the official programme here, or like MSF Ireland Week on Facebook.

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