MDM INTERNATIONAL NETWORK ANNUAL REPORT FOR 2022
Acting together, growing together, existing together. These three key areas are the common thread running through the priorities and initiatives we have defined in the strategic plan that guides our joint action as an international network. The year 2022 has enabled us, as a network, to transform into concrete initiatives this desire to come together. First, we added to the Network Support Team (NST) and strengthened it by appointing a network coordinator to give us the means to achieve our ambitions and to support us in this colossal challenge.
Then, after several months of discussion and mobilization, we agreed on a strategic plan for 2023-2025 and ensured its effective implementation through an action plan. We were able to celebrate these achievements at an extraordinary network meeting in Brussels, warmly welcomed by our Belgian colleagues. We can be proud of the work we have accomplished. Although these tasks may at times seem highly technical, they are essential if we are to offer greater scope to our individual and joint actions for the benefit of people experiencing exclusion. Lessons must be learned from these processes, as they will need to be refreshed regularly to continue our development of an inclusive, collaborative and impactful network.
We continue to fight for the right to health in every country where we operate. Firstly, by getting involved in numerous health projects in our own countries and, secondly, by campaigning locally as well as nationally and internationally for the universal right to health. The network is also active around the world through hundreds of projects in dozens of countries, helping to strengthen access to healthcare for all.
The mobilization in response to the war in Ukraine has enabled us to strengthen our international coordination to support the Ukrainian population by adapting the projects underway since 2015 and by rolling out new interventions. The same has applied to projects targeting the Syrian population in Syria and Türkiye. Well-coordinated action has resulted in several Médecins du Monde delegations working together to help this population. These two examples show that coordinated action by a diverse network is not only possible but results in greater impact.
LOOKING AT THE FUTURE
The cultural and organizational diversity of our network’s constituents is a unique resource. We therefore wish to protect it and avoid the pitfall of homogenization that can result from a single entity. Instead, we must continue to nurture a culture of mutual benevolence, intercultural security and respect for the freedoms of each of our delegations. In addition to establishing processes to this end, these defining characteristics of a decentralized healthcare network are forged through experience and constructive self-criticism. So in 2023 and the years to come, we hope to pursue greater autonomy on the basis of the common foundations we have laid for ourselves, while continuing to question and innovate in how we do things.
Above all, we need to focus our hearts and minds on the ultimate goal of our actions: to break down barriers to access to healthcare so that every person can enjoy their fundamental right to health.
Hendrik Verschuur and David-Martin Milot
Co-coordinators of the Network Presidents Council (NPC)