REFUGEE CAMP IN YOUR CITY is made up of the actual materials used by Médecins Sans Frontières, including refugee housing tents, a food distribution tent, water bladder and pump, health clinic, vaccination tent, nutrition tent, cholera treatment centre, and a landmines education area.
How can I visit?
Tours run every 15 minutes from 9am to 5pm*. Each lasts 45~60 minutes.
Visitors can arrive at any time, to then be gathered in small groups and taken through the CAMP by Médecins Sans Frontières field workers who have first-hand experience caring for people displaced in countries such as Sudan, including the Darfur region, Thailand, Bangladesh and Democratic Republic of Congo.
Pre-bookable slots are available and recommended for large groups or schools.
*Weekday lunchtime (noon – 2pm) is more loosely structured to welcome visitors on tight schedules.
What will I learn?
The field workers, your guides, demonstrate the various types of shelter used in a refugee crisis, and how food is distributed. They talk about how water sources and latrines are treated to prevent epidemic outbreaks. They explain how Médecins Sans Frontières monitors the health of displaced people and implements vaccination and nutrition programs to treat them. They discuss the dangers and insecurities that are commonplace in camps, and the effects of displacement on mental health.
The interaction between visitors and our field workers with first-hand experience makes the CAMP a remarkable learning experience for children and adults alike, as Médecins Sans Frontières Field Workers, Tonia and Margie, report from the CAMP's 2008 tour.
Tonia Marquardt, whose first mission with MSF was to Malawi in 2000
"For the visitor to actually see and feel what's being talked about in REFUGEE CAMP IN YOUR CITY creates a significant impact, even though in Australia we are often so far away from the reality of what's being discussed. Each of the sites give the guides a point of reference to discuss what their experiences have been like in the field, allowing the event to take on a more personal note. The responses from visitors varied a lot, with interest and surprise being the most frequent, both at how much can be done and some of the newer innovations available in the field. Overall, the feedback was extremely positive with most people saying how impressed they were at how much they learnt from the display and tour."
Margie Barclay, whose first mission with MSF was to Tajikistan in 1997
"REFUGEE CAMP IN YOUR CITY brings the real life experiences of refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) into our far removed modern world. Throughout the journey, the visitor witnesses the challenges and living situations refugees and IDPs find themselves in, such as finding the basic necessities of shelter, food and clean water. It's the children especially who often come up with the most insightful questions, the ones that adults are too hesitant to ask. It was my privilege to be a part of the great team and I learnt many things also from the experiences of others I worked alongside."