was registered as a British Charity in February 1995 and was
in operation until 31st July 2009. Its purpose was to donate
medicines and medical equipment to paediatric hospitals in
Iraq. MAIC is a non-political and non-governmental organisation.
was founded in response to the rapid deterioration of health
conditions for children in Iraq. This was due to the collapse
of the health care system as a result of the imposition of
UN Sanctions on Iraq in 1990 and the ensuing Gulf War of 1991.
Between 1995 and 2003, MAIC operated under the strict bureaucratic
rules of the UN Sanctions. The Sanctions created a great impediment
for the speedy delivery of urgently needed aid to Iraqi hospitals.
There were unreasonable delays in acquiring the United Nations
approval along with the issue of the export licence from the
Department for Trade and Industry.
the 1991 Gulf War, Iraqs infrastructure was left completely
devastated. Economic and humanitarian conditions rapidly declined
and the sanctions harmed the most vulnerable of Iraqi society;
women, children, the poor, the elderly and the sick. The Sanctions
were lifted after the 2003 War on Iraq.
from international health and aid organisations, as well as
UN agencies published during the UN Sanctions period 1990-2003,
estimated that around 6,000 children were dying every month.
It was estimated that 1 million children, especially those
under five years of age, were affected by malnutrition. A
total of 570,000 have died from malnutrition and disease between
1990 and 1996. Since then, this figure is estimated to have
reached over 1.5 million. Marasmus and rickets, two major
malnutrition diseases, have also risen dramatically among
hospitals witnessed a sharp increase in the number of children
with cancer, especially leukaemia, which accounts for 70%
of total cancer cases. Children are increasingly suffering
from Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma, Wilms (nephroblastoma)
and neuroblastoma. Diseases such as hepatitis, Sturge Weber
Syndrome, and encephalitis are also on the rise.
2003 War and the ensuing escalation of violence added further
devastation to an already shattered health care system. Scores
of civilians particularly children died and many more were
injured and maimed. Furthermore, the looting of hospitals
and the outbreak of disease due to contamination of the water
and the pollution of the environment added major hazards to
the dilapidated health system. The trauma of two wars and
the mounting violence have traumatised children. It is estimated
that 500,000 children are in need of psychological treatment.
was amongst a handful of charities that started operating
in Iraq in the 1990s. Since its inception in 1995 it has played
a significant role in saving the lives of children. MAIC donated
and delivered medical equipment valued at £3.5 million
to 33 paediatric hospitals located in the North, South and
Centre of Iraq. Many of these hospitals received medical supplies
on a regular yearly basis until 2003. Since then unfortunately
with the escalation of violence we have had to limit delivery
to only those hospitals in areas that are safe to reach. Between
January 1995 and July 2009 it is estimated that MAIC was able
to offer treatment and save the lives of more than 350,000
children and has offered nine Iraqi doctors short training
programmes in UK hospitals. MAIC ceased operation on 31st
information on the closure of MAIC please see Newsletter
14 Autumn 2008.