Patricia Royston

While in Liberia, I worked as the adopt-a-patient coordinator, and I happened to meet this woman – Esther her name was – and she would come almost every day and visit another patient. She would sometimes bring a little baby with her.

One day I asked her about her baby. How old he was, what his name was. And she said to me: “He’s a Mercy Ships baby.” And I thought: “Oh, how can that be? We don’t deliver babies.”

She went on to explain to me that the time before, when the ship had been in Liberia, she had come onboard as a VVF patient, and had had surgery done, and it had proved successful. A year later, after she had had the surgery, she became pregnant and had her little boy.

I absolutely love working here. I've enjoyed working on the ship for the past five years.

I hope I continue to do so. What makes me happy is seeing the way that people’s lives are changed. For them to be able to go out and start a new life is wonderful. It’s so joyous, I love it.

And the Dress Ceremony party that we have downstairs with the VVF ladies dressing up in new outfits, having make-up put on, they are given mirrors and bars of soap – and it symbolises a new life, cleanness, wholeness, all of that. It’s just wonderful.

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