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Founded in the year 1978, Mercy Ships is a global charity. It makes a total difference to most ships that we used to know because Mercy Ships provides hope and healing to the abandoned people. 


Mercy Ships exists pursuing the 2000-year-model of Jesus, delivering humanitarian aid and support. Essentially, free health care and assistance, community health education and development projects, mental health programs, booze care for incurable sick patients, and even advocating agriculture projects. What’s more impressive about Mercy Ships organization is that it extend help and treatment to all patients without cost. In fact, regardless of race, gender, and religion. Because of this, Mercy Ships is recognized worldwide as a Better Business Bureau accredited philanthropic institution.

Being an international charity, Mercy Ships has been currently operating a fleet of hospital vessels. Specifically, in over fifty-seven developing nations and eighteen developed countries around the globe. At present, Mercy Ships put more focus in Africa countries. Mercy Ships has its ISC or International Support Center in Garden Valley. Furthermore, it also has sixteen national resources headquarters in different nations including the following:

Britain, Spain, Canada, Switzerland, Germany, South Africa, Netherlands, Australia, South Africa, Korea, France, Belgium, Denmark, Swede, New Zealand, and Norway.


The History of Mercy Ships

Mercy Ships was established by Don and Deyon Stephens. They are inspired dominantly with the contributions made by the international hospital watercraft known as SS Hope. Their studies have revealed that ninety-five of the world’s 100 largest cities are actually port cities. Thus, a hospital vessel could bring and extend healthcare sufficiently to a great number of individuals. Aside from this fact, Stephen’s totally disabled son as well motivated him to pursue their vision of operating a floating hospital. Finally, their visit with Mother Teresa in Calcutta, India has deepened his desire more in bringing service to the world’s less fortunate ones.

Originally, Mercy Ships was has been part of the Youth with a Mission or YWAM family of Christian associations. But since the year 2003, it has become a standalone organization. It utilizes retired vessels particularly ferries and ocean liners, which have been revamped into floating hospitals. Victoria was the very first ocean liner obtained, being purchased for a scrap value of only one million US Dollars. Over four years, the 9 deck ship was reconstructed into the hospital watercraft MV Anastasis. Having a 522-foot measure, such was installed with 3 operating areas, a dental clinic, laboratory, x-ray machine, and forty patient beds. This hospital ship has aboard 350 member crew, which included Don and Deyon Stephens along with their four young children for ten straight years.

Since then, Mercy Ships has been operating more than one floating hospitals both purchased and donated.

  • MV Anastasis, in operation from 1983 to 2007
  • Caribbean Mercy, in service from 1994 to 2005
  • Island Mercy in 1994 and stopped operation in 2001
  • Africa Mercy, in service, since 2000 to present



The Mission of Mercy Ships

Following the 2000-year-old model of Jesus, Mercy Ships existed to provide hope and healing to the forgotten poor. Mercy Ships operating fleets have accomplished stopover port visits in different developing and developed countries. The volunteers have conducted services having the value of more than 1.2 billion dollars, helping over 2.54 million beneficiaries.

In addition, Mercy Ship’s volunteers have performed over 81,000 free operations such as cataract removal, cleft lip and palate, orthopedic and facial reconstruction and straightening of crossed eyes. Other than those mentioned, over 143,000 patients were treated with dental services, also 377,000 with dental procedures.

Mercy Ships has trained over 5,900 local professionals, also surgeons who have in turn educate many others. More impressively, Mercy Ships trained more than 37,400 professionals in their expertise. Substantially, midwifery, anesthesiology, orthopedic and reconstructive surgery, sterilization and leadership.

As well, Mercy Ships have equipped more than 193,000 local people regarding basin healthcare. It also has completed about 1,100 community development proposals concentrating on education, water and sanitation,  and infrastructure development and agriculture.