Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

Shimon Peres: 'a man of many faces'

Read more

THE DEBATE

The Legacy of Shimon Peres: The last of Israel's founding generation (part 1)

Read more

THE DEBATE

The Legacy of Shimon Peres: What's left of the Oslo Accords? (part 2)

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Ex-CIA director 'very worried' by prospect of Trump presidency

Read more

FACE-OFF

Migrant crisis: A political football in France?

Read more

FOCUS

Will France repatriate its collection of 19th century Algerian skulls?

Read more

ENCORE!

Film show: 'The Dancer', 'Aquarius' and 'Dogs'

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

War in Syria: Residents recount ordeal of life in Aleppo

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Shimon Peres’ Quixotic battle for Israeli-Palestinian peace

Read more

We travel to meet the people behind fascinating environmental, health and technological innovations in a bid for sustainable solutions to our changing world. Saturday at 6.10 pm.

DOWN TO EARTH

DOWN TO EARTH

Latest update : 2013-10-30

Mercy Ships: Hospital of Hope

France 24 goes on board the Africa Mercy. This floating hospital with a crew of 400 offers the most advanced health care for free to some of the poorest people in the world.

When the Africa Mercy docked in Congo Brazzaville for the first time earlier this year, a record number of people came forward, believing this was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be healed. This week Down to Earth visits the hospital ship that's changing lives along the African west coast.

Africa Mercy is the world's largest floating charity hospital. It has eight decks, five operating theatres and one mission: to offer modern medical care, free of cost, to patients who are often crippled, disfigured or blind.

Over ten months, the volunteer crew will treat thousands of adults and children, many of them living with conditions that have left them marginalised in their communities.

In just a few days they leave the ship, not only cured but with a renewed sense of pride.

The ship's stop in Pointe Noire has also provided a new opportunity to train doctors and nurses in local hospitals, so that the Africa Mercy has a lasting impact long after it sets sail for its next port. 

By Mairead DUNDAS , Marina BERTSCH , Juliette LACHARNAY , Emilie COCHAUD

COMMENT(S)

Archives

2016-07-14 women

Women and work: Why parity could add trillions to global growth

The world is a better place for women and girls in 2016 than even a decade ago. But that's not the case for everyone, and certainly not everywhere. Access to job opportunities is...

Read more

2016-07-01 environment

Extinction crisis: Saving the planet's species from an irreversible fate

Species are disappearing faster than at any time since the dinosaurs' demise. Scientists are calling it the sixth mass extinction and it's largely driven by man. This week the...

Read more

2016-06-10 drones

Drones to the rescue: How pilotless aircraft are saving lives

Historically known for taking lives, drones are now emerging as one of the most promising tools for health and emergency services.

Read more

2016-05-27 Sustainable development

Plastic planet: Using today's resources tomorrow

This week Down to Earth explores the alarming rate in which plastic has plastered the planet. Since it was invented a century ago the petroleum-based material has invaded all...

Read more

2016-05-13 Senegal

Senegal: Lighting the way for off-grid communities

In this new episode of "Down to Earth", we head to Senegal, where only three out of five households have access to electricity

Read more