No Border Medics is a small, donation-funded NGO in Dunkerque, northern France, which has been providing medical aid for refugees since September 2022.
Using simple means, it offers care for wounds and treatment for colds, flu, scabies and orthopaedic problems.
In view of the EU member states’ failure to fulfil their obligation to provide all people with basic necessities of life, No Border Medics believes it has a responsibility to create a temporary primary healthcare service.
Thousands of refugees are currently staying in irregular camps around Dunkirk and Calais on the north coast of France. They are living in simple tents that cannot withstand the rainy and cold weather. Most of them are Kurds from Iraq and Iran as well as people from Afghanistan, South Sudan, Ethiopia, Eritrea and Punjabis from India. They are waiting to cross the English Channel to the UK by boat or lorry. As there is no legal entry route for refugees, the illegalised crossing is very dangerous and sometimes even fatal.
Life here is characterised by frustration and suffering, but also by dreams and hopes for a better future. Many of the people have spent years in Western Europe and lived within the EU for several years. However, due to the restrictive asylum policy, they have no other option but to leave the EU. The flight can take several years or even decades. Displaced people suffer from physical and psychological violence, including a lack of protection and safety as well as difficult access to essential material goods such as food, water, medical care, clothing, tents and sleeping bags.