These project guides are starting points, and we certainly hope that communities will develop new ways to express solidarity with victims of aggression. The key is for each community to take responsibility for helping one child and the child’s family.
Medical Relief Projects
A parent or legal guardian will accompany the child to the US. For more detailed information and checklists, click here (pdf). The basic steps are:
1. Contact NMV and let us know that you’re interested in putting a project together.
2. Form a core group of four or five people who will take primary responsibility for the project. Assign roles based on skills and interests:
- Medical Liaison: this person will receive medical reports, send them to local medical contacts for assessment, and report the findings of local doctors to NMV in a timely manner. This person will be the key contact for patient selection and medical information.
- Housing / Accommodations: this person will play the lead role in making arrangements for housing during the child’s medical treatment.
- Logistics: this person will make arrangements for transportation, interpreters, scheduling, and related issues, working closely with the person in charge of housing and accommodations.
- Events / Fundraising: this person will lead in fundraising, organizing the welcome at the airport, and event planning during the child’s stay.
- Media: a key person should be assigned to work with NMV on local and national media. You’ll receive a press guidelines document that explains the NMV process for media, as well as any promotional materials including posters, flyers, etc. Here is an example of one chapter’s brochure that can be adapted to your area.
3. Identify a child whose injuries match medical services that can be made available in your community free of charge. [Note: We work to place children injured as a direct result of US military assault.] The child should stand to benefit substantially from medical treatment in the United States — treatment that is not available in the child’s community.
- NMV will assist you in with the process of identifying a child. However, be sure someone in your core group is interested in doing some highly illuminating research as a part of that process. The medical liaison should send the medical reports to a local doctor(s) for review, and provide NMV with a timely report about their findings.
- Once a child has been identified, the medical liaison must provide NMV with two letters: a) a letter from the primary care physician (PCP) promising to provide medical treatment for the child free of charge; and b) a letter from a medical facility promising to provide facility services for the child free of charge. These letters should be printed on letterhead and signed by the PCP and the appropriate hospital authority.
Once all of these arrangements are in place, NMV will consult with your group about travel arrangements.
These projects are designed to express solidarity with an individual child and his or her family. Smaller groups with limited resources and/or time are ideally suited for these projects. The basic steps are:
- Contact NMV to express interest in putting a project together;
- Identify a child who was injured as a direct result of US assault;
- Establish contact with the child and his or her family;
- Learn everything you can about what happened to the child — the weapons that were used, the number of civilians killed or injured in the attack, the child’s medical needs, and the circumstances prevailing in the child’s community, i.e., state of the medical infrastructure; availability of electricity, food, clean water, and the like.
- Raise donations for the child and family;
- Write oped articles about what happened to the child;
- Make buttons for your children using a photograph of the child, with an “Ask Me About (Child’s Name)” caption to stimulate conversations at school;
- Write to your elected officials and ask to meet with them about the child;
- Form a delegation and visit the Pentagon to seek answers about the operations that injured the child.
- You will all invent your own ways to express solidarity and concern; these are just a few suggestions. These projects can be highly creative and effective, and put the Pentagon on notice that people are paying attention.