Mercy Ships’ newest acquisition, the Global Mercy, arrived in Antwerp last weekend. The world’s largest hospital ship sailed through the Oosterschelde, where it was admired by over a hundred ship spotters at the Bocht van Bath in Rilland.
The largest private hospital ship in the world departed from shipyard China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC), Tianjin, China, at the end of July and then passed the Suez Canal on its way to Europe. In Antwerp, the ship will be fitted out with medical equipment and other fittings in the coming months.
After its completion in the spring of 2022, the ship will leave for Rotterdam for a fifteen-day public visit, prior to its first mission in Africa. The purpose of this visit is to introduce as many people as possible to Mercy Ships’ mission. Afterwards, the ship will leave for Dakar, the capital of Senegal. There, the ship will be deployed for the first time for its intended purpose: providing medical care to hundreds of thousands of people who urgently need it.
From the Netherlands, dozens of volunteers are ready to contribute for a short or longer period of time to the completion of the ship in Antwerp, and/or go along on the first mission to Africa. For the period in Antwerp, Mercy Ships is still looking for volunteers, who for a period of four weeks or more want to work as a technician, cleaner, kitchen employee or medical technician.
Supplies from the Netherlands
Besides the installation of the medical equipment, the Global Mercy will also recieve supplies in Antwerp. The Netherlands plays a major role in this: the ship is supplied from the European Distribution Center in Rotterdam, ensuring that all materials and goods are present on the ship for departure to Africa.