For some, it's a place.

For others, it's the people they love.

For most, it's a feeling: of safety and belonging.

This December, while many of us are with our families, our teams will be away from home delivering vital medical care for people who have lost their land, loved ones and any trace of security.

Help us treat the physical and psychological wounds of Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh. Donate to our Rohingya appeal today.

Continue reading to find out more about the Rohingya and how we're helping.

Photos © Moises Saman/Magnum Photos unless otherwise stated.

"The military came to our part of town around 6pm and said: ‘Leave the village before 8am tomorrow. Every one that stays will be killed.’"

61-year-old MSF patient

As heavy monsoon rain pelts down, Rohingya refugees attempt to cross the Bangladesh-Myanmar border to the refugee camps in Cox's Bazar. © Moises Saman/Magnum Photos for MSF

Who are the Rohingya?

The Rohingya are a group of people who have lived for centuries in Myanmar.

Due to their ethnicity, they are denied citizenship and are one of the most persecuted minorities in the world.

Violence and oppression has forced hundreds of thousands of Rohingya to flee to countries neighbouring Myanmar, either by land or sea, over the course of many decades.

But in August 2017, a brutal campaign of violence by the Myanmar government killed more than 6,500 Rohingya, including at least 430 children under five years old.

The reports our teams heard from the refugees were horrifying.

“What we uncovered was staggering... We heard reports of entire families who perished after they were locked inside their homes, while they were set alight.”
Dr Sidney Wong, MSF Medical Director.

Over 900,000 Rohingya refugees are living in squalid camps in the Cox's Bazar region of Bangladesh.

That's more than the
population of Liverpool.

So, how are
we helping?

We had to respond fast to this unprecedented movement of people fleeing Myanmar.

We’ve been working with the Rohingya in this part of Bangladesh since 1985, but the exodus meant we had to launch additional emergency projects in Cox’s Bazar.

Since the start of the crisis, we have carried out nearly one million consultations.

As of late November 2018:

  • Health facilities
    We’re running 18 health facilities, including four inpatient facilities and four primary healthcare centres
  • MSF staff
    We have more than 2,000 staff responding, the majority Bangladeshi nationals
  • Patients
    Our teams have carried out over 984,000 consultations and admitted more than 17,225 patients

Our teams are providing primary and secondary healthcare across the camps in Cox's Bazar, treating diseases like diphtheria, providing mental healthcare and making sure women have a safe place to give birth.

As well as responding to health conditions, we are providing water and sanitation services, such as building wells and latrines. This is vital in helping prevent the spread of waterborne diseases.

Photo top: © Anna Surinyach / Photo bottom: © Dalila Mahdawi/MSF

We had to respond fast to this unprecedented movement of people crossing over the border into Bangladesh.

We’ve been working with the Rohingya in this part of Bangladesh since 1985, but the exodus meant we had to launch additional emergency projects in Cox’s Bazar.

Since the start of the crisis, we have carried out nearly one million consultations.

As of August 2018, one year on from the start of the crisis:

  • Health facilities
    We’re running 18 health facilities, including four inpatient facilities, four primary healthcare centres
  • MSF staff
    We have more than 2,000 staff responding, the majority Bangladeshi nationals
  • Patients
    Our teams have carried out over 984,000 consultations and admitted more than 17,225 patients

Our teams are providing primary and secondary healthcare across the camps in Cox's Bazar, treating diseases like diphtheria, providing mental healthcare and making sure women have a safe place to give birth.

As well as responding to health conditions, we are providing water and sanitation services, such as building wells and latrines. This is vital in helping prevent the spread of waterborne diseases.

Photo top: © Patrick Rohr
Photo bottom: © Dalila Mahdawi/MSF