Armenia 1998: “The teachers were like prison guards”

During the 1990s, Mission East distributed food and warm clothes to Armenian orphanages, including Nubarashen 11. But the Soviet attitude towards disability made lives at the orphanages miserable. Jane and Dennis Loze decided to change that.

By Line Højland, Communications Officer

On a freezing cold Saturday morning in 1998, Dennis and Jane Loze visited Nubarashen 11 – an orphanage for children with ’mental problems’ on the outskirts of the Armenian capital Yerevan. Later, Dennis described the visit in his autobiography:

Armenia 1992: The first major relief operation

In 1988, an armed conflict broke out over the Armenian enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh in Azerbaijan. As the six-year conflict reached its climax, the newly founded aid organisation Mission East decided to send emergency relief to the area.

By Line Højland, Communications Officer

Chhepi's fields are green again

A project on ”climate-smart” agriculture has created optimism in a village in Western Nepal. With solar-powered water pumps the local farmers can irrigate and cultivate their fields. In December, Mission East’s local partner organisation received an award for the project.

By Kim Wiesener, Communications Officer

16 Dec 2016 |

Hairdressing in a tent

At the Mission East youth centre on Sinjar Mountain, 50 young Yezidi girls have learnt to cut hair, while others have become adept at using a sewing machine.

By Kim Wiesener, Communications Officer

The young girls are handling the situation with a combination of seriousness and smiles. They are intensely focused on creating a beautiful, almost Hollywood-like, hairstyle for their friend, but it is also obvious that they are having fun.

16 Dec 2016 |

Escaped from Islamic State

A Yezidi family on Sinjar Mountain has been split into several parts due to the ravage of Islamic State in Northern Iraq. Four members are still prisoners of the terrorist movement.

By Kim Wiesener, Communications Officer

Naida has ten children – but only six of them are with her. Naida’s three oldest sons and one daughter are captives of the terrorist movement Islamic State. And the fate of her husband is uncertain.

16 Dec 2016 |

From Nepal’s civil war to hotspot Iraq

Binay Basyal is Mission East’s country director in conflict-ridden Iraq. The Nepalese aid worker is no stranger to civil wars – he experienced one in his home country.

By Kim Wiesener, Communications Officer

What does it take to lead a Mission East office in a war zone? According to Binay Basyal, it requires a combination of calmness and indignation – on top of the necessary professional skills.

16 Dec 2016 |

“It is hard to ignore when you see what they have been through”

The Danish emergency aid specialist, Knud Andersen, has been in Iraq since October to coordinate Mission East’s efforts to help the many people who are fleeing Mosul. A humanitarian disaster of this scale requires a lot of planning – and flexibility.

By Kim Wiesener, Communications Officer

Distribution of emergency aid is like a giant jigsaw puzzle. A lot of pieces need to fall into place when the scale of a humanitarian crisis becomes as large as it is expected to be when the flow of refugees out of Mosul escalates.

16 Dec 2016 |

Mahmoud wants to be no 1 in his class

Eight-year old Mahmoud has a serious disability, but the Mission East mobile child centre has inspired him to go back to school.

By Kim Wiesener, Communications Officer

When Mahmoud was five years old, he started feeling the symptoms of the disease that has now tied him to a wheelchair. A couple of years later, when he was in second grade, his school sent him home. It simply was not equipped to handle a pupil suffering from muscular dystrophy.

16 Dec 2016 |

Mission East helped them through the winter

In December 2015, displaced Iraqi families received help to cope with the winter cold.

By Kim Wiesener, Communications Officer

Jihan, her husband and their four children live in an unfinished concrete house. The window frames are big, gaping holes, and the “entrance door” to their temporary home is a thin piece of cloth.

16 Dec 2016 | Mission East

Dane collects money for Iraq

Johannes Lee preferred donations for Mission East to receiving gifts for himself.

By Line Højland, Communications Officer

“For my 40th birthday, I chose to ask the guests to give a donation instead of a gift for me. The reason for choosing displaced people in Iraq was primarily that there was a lot of focus on the issue at the time. Therefore, it also had the attention of myself and my guests,” Johannes said.

16 Dec 2016 | Mission East

Jubilee reception: Aid makes a difference

“Mission East contributes to making Danish development assistance more efficient than we could manage on our own,” then Minister for Foreign Affairs Kristian Jensen said at the 25th jubilee celebration on 18 November. The former Minister for Foreign Affairs, Per Stig Møller, added that Mission East’s development work also stabilises vulnerable countries that have been forgotten by the rest of the world.

By Svend Løbner, Freelance Journalist 

Higher school attendance due to improved water facilities

Dehydration, abdominal pains and diarrhea were some of the many problems faced by pupils at a girls’ primary school in Rustaq district. With a new water scheme provided by Mission East the students no longer have to suffer from stomach disease and attendance has increased to nearly 100 per cent.

"Water and shelter from Mission East saved our lives"

Dalli saw her house crumble when the earthquake struck Nepal last spring. The 44-year-old woman and her children had to sleep in the open until Mission East provided material for shelter and hygiene. Now the work continues to secure the future for other vulnerable families.

Mission East in World Humanitarian Summit publication

Mission East’s work in making sure no one is left behind in humanitarian aid is featured in the official World Humanitarian Summit publication ‘Together We Stand’.     An article on inclusive programming, written jointly with the EU-CORD network, features our work in Afghanistan.  It explains how Mission East uses special approaches including Self-Help Groups to make sure that women are supported to improved their livelihoods assistance, despite traditional negative perceptions about women’s roles. 

Here the children get food everyday

Education is important. But it is equally important to eat enough food to grow, thrive, and study.. At the COME school in Burma, the children of the Mara people get education as well as food thanks to the aid from Mission East. Here are three accounts on the daily life in Maraland, Chin State, before and after COME school.

The fear of winter

Mohammad Sharif and his family used to be fearful of the three months of cold and severe winter in the Afghan mountains where they live. But with knowledge about effective methods for vegetable cultivation gained from Mission East, the family can now enjoy a balanced diet – also during winter.

Water is heavy when it must be carried

When there is a half hour walk to fetch clean water, you often compromise with proper hygiene. Juyang Hui from North Korea had to walk half an hour twice a day to reach the nearest well and fetch water for her family. The 34-year-old woman lives with her husband and eight-year-old son in the village of Sony outside Kujang.

Soap and water is deadly serious

Infectious diseases can cost the lives of people who have fled from war. At the centres established by Mission East in northern Iraq, children who have fled from war learn how to keep infection away with soap and water.

Red, blue and green finger paints are spread over plates all around the floor, and next to them are large, white sheets of paper ready to be decorated. After a while the paper sheets are littered with hand prints, and the many children in the room raise their coloured hands in excitement. 

Caught in the chaos of war

First, their village was occupied by IS. After that, bombs fell. 13-year-old Yasser and his family are marked by the war they fled from. Now they get help from Mission East.

Earthquake in Tajikistan – Mission East assesses the situation

A powerful earthquake hit Monday the Central Asian republic of Tajikistan. The Danish aid organisation Mission East who works with the local population on disaster risk reduction and to build water systems in isolated villages of the region, is monitoring the situation closely.

Monday 12:50 local time, a strong earthquake struck the central Asian republic of Tajikistan. The quake measured 7.2 on the Richter scale and had its epicenter in a remote mountain area. The tremors could clearly be felt in the country's capital Dushanbe and as far away as Delhi in India.

16 Nov 2015 |

Hope for the displaced on Sinjar Mountain

Thousands of Yazidis in North Iraq have now returned to Sinjar Mountain from where they fled when the Islamic State attacked the area more than one year ago. Mission East is helping them with sanitation, shelter and processing the trauma.

10 Nov 2015 |

Women and children freed from IS terror - now they need help to survive.

A group of women and children were freed from Islamic State while Kim Hartzner was visiting Kirkuk in northern Iraq. As with all refugees, they are in desperate need of everything in order to make it through the coming winter. Mission East is distributing food and hygiene kits.

"We saw a whole group of people who had been liberated from their ISIS captors the very same day," says Managing Director Kim Hartzner, who has just returned from a visit to a village near Kirkuk in northern Iraq.

Mission East intends to prevent disease among 4,000 Afghans af-fected by a major earthquake

Mission East hands out hygiene items to 500 families in northern Afghanistan, where latrines and water supply were damaged or destroyed by the massive earthquake on 26 October.

The Danish aid organisation Mission East is now helping 500 families in the devastated Badakhshan province in northern Afghanistan. The province was already ravaged by battles between the Taliban and Afghan government forces when a violent earthquake hit the area Monday afternoon on 26 October.

Finding hope and a second chance in Iraq

Everything changed for Ade and her children when they had to flee their home in Sinjar and leave everything behind one early morning last year. Life as an internally displaced person in northern Iraq is desperately hard, but at Mission East’s centre for support for displaced women and children, Ade gets the chance for a new beginning.

By Mev Bardiqi with translation by Azad Rasho, relief workers, Northern Iraq

The Mara people are struggling against the floods

The worst floods in decades have hit Burma. "Food is the biggest problem," says Mission East’s partner in one of the affected areas.

12 days of constant rain and storms in July and August have caused widespread destruction in Chin State in western Burma. The severe weather is caused by the cyclone Komen, which has raged throughout Southeast Asia this summer, and the situation is still chaotic.

The Maid Started her Own Shop

Every day was a struggle against hunger for the 50-year-old widow Majabin and her five children. With help from Mission East, she has now started her own small food business.

Around 0.70 Euro per day and a single meal is what Afghan Majabin was paid to work as a maid in the house next door. It was not enough to buy food for her five children, all of whom suffered from skin diseases, had protruding ribs and constant stomach-aches because of malnutrition.

Knowledge is a Way out of Poverty

Burmese women started to cooperate on selling chilli peppers after receiving training from Mission East. Better knowledge means more profits, and that brings people out of poverty.

Imagine that you have never had a bank account. Banknotes are something you only see when you travel - to India, to sell your home-grown chillies and buy rice. If you need anything else, you exchange your crops for it, or manage to do without it. 

27 Oct 2015 | Mission East

New Mission East Ambassador: Master of Steel Pans Wants to Change the World

Mission East's new music ambassador, Gregory Boyd, is incredibly skilled on the so-called steel pans. When people listen to his music, he hopes that the audience understands the symbolism: The poor can rise out of their misery, like his shiny steel pans that were once simple rubbish bins.

By Svend Løbner, journalist

The sound is both soft and crisp. The tones succeed and mingle with each other in authentic harmonies that evoke images of salty beaches, swaying palm trees, pavilions of bamboo and the serving of exotic drinks.

Little Girl Walked for two Days through the Mountains

Mary Nuso’s desire to study was so deep that she as an eight-year-old embarked on a two-day journey, to reach the COME school. Now she is one of the Mara people’s hopes for the future.

Fetching water, gathering firewood, cleaning, cooking. The life of a little girl in Chin State in Burma consists of hard work and not enough food to fill the stomach. The life of Mary Nuso, the youngest of eight siblings, was no exception, right up until she decided to change her life.

Mission East present in Afghanistan after massive earthquake

A massive earthquake struck Monday morning northeastern Afghanistan. Danish aid organization is present in the area and preliminary reports tell of collapsed schools.

Around 10 am CET an earthquake hit Afghanistan measuring 7.5 on the Richter scale. The epicenter is located close to Faizabad, the provincial capital of Badakhshan. As far away as Islamabad and New Delhi buildings were swaying and people rushed into the streets in panic.

Families fleeing fighting in northern Afghanistan

Mission East has distributed hygiene kits and installed latrines in IDP camp near Taloqan and Faizabad to prevent infectious diseases.

Last week Mission East staff in Afghanistan handed out 480 boxes of hygiene items to families who have fled the fighting between the Taliban and government forces in the city of Kunduz and other places in northern Afghanistan.

Emergency aid to the Himalayas


Piskar lies just a few kilometres from the epicentre of the earthquake that hit Nepal on May 12th and the majority of the houses in the village have collapsed. Mission East arrived with humanitarian aid in the form of tarpaulins and hygiene kits shortly before the monsoon set in and mudslides blocked the roads.

‘We need a house to live in’


In the aftermath of the Nepal earthquakes, the elderly and people with disabilities are some of the most vulnerable. Man Kaji and Maili Maya are some of the beneficiaries of Mission East’s relief efforts. The rebuilding commences after the monsoon.

The children must not be let down 

A year ago, the Yazidi religious minority in Iraq suffered violent attacks from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS). The UN has not hesitated to describe the atrocities as genocide.  History has shown that it is important that these victims are helped to deal with the shock in order to ensure that future generations do not also suffer from the horrific deeds.

Mission East will protect 30,000 victims of earthquake from diseases in monsoon period

Mission East distributes tarpaulins and hygiene kits to about 7,000 families close to the earthquake’s epicenter in Nepal. Volunteers help the most vulnerable putting up tents, and staff advises on hygiene issues.

A month from now massive rain will wash down on the millions people affected by the earthquake in Nepal. The relief and development organisation Mission East is at the moment working tirelessly on providing shelter and clean water for the most vulnerable groups in outlying mountain villages.

Widows must not be forgotten in relief aid

Mission East works on helping the most vulnerable groups in society. Ujjali aged 84 is one of them.

Mission East distributes relief aid in nine villages northeast of Kathmandu and makes sure that the most vulnerable groups in society – e.g. elderly and people with disabilities – get tarpaulins and hygiene kits to withstand cold weather, rain and infectious diseases.

15 Apr 2015 | Mission East

Press release: The Armenian Genocide is an eye opener

On April 24, we commemorate the massacre of 1.5 million Armenian men, women and children 100 years ago. The date should shake us awake, so we act against the genocide in Syria and Iraq currently, says Kim Hartzner from Mission East

27 Mar 2015 | Mission East

Press Release: Mission East prevents the second wave of the disaster

After emergency relief was provided for the cyclone affected Vanuatu Islands, the fields belonging to the population will be planted with fast-growing crops to prevent a famine.

Mission East is known for fast emergency care and sustainable development assistance. After the cyclone Pam swept the Vanuatu Islands last Saturday, both are required. Therefore emergency food aid is now launched in re-cultivation of the fields. Otherwise, the vulnerable pacific islands will be facing another disaster.

Nepal: breaking the silence

Humla and Mugu are two of the most remote and impoverished districts in Nepal. Humla is only accessible by air and Mugu by just a seasonal road connection. The isolated geography coupled with poverty, low education, poor health, and deep-rooted harmful socio-cultural practices have narrowed opportunities especially for women to lift themselves out of poverty.

23 Mar 2015 |

Press Release: Danes help thousands escaping from terrorism

Mission East has once more given out winter help to the displaced people of Northern Iraq who are escaping from Islamic State. Secretary General, Kim Hartzner says “The displaced people are shaken, and their gratitude is touching”.

The terror attack in Copenhagen cost two human lives and shocked Denmark. In Northern Iraq, one million people are on the run from the terrorist movement of Islamic State. The terrorists brutal misanthropy is going at full blast and murdering men, raping women and force marrying girls.

Together we break down barriers

Unwanted and hidden, denied access to education and unable to go outside of the four walls of their home. For people with disabilities, there are many barriers to overcome, both physical, as well as barriers that exist in the minds of other people.

In Tajikistan, children with disabilities are hidden away. In Armenia their parents are reproached for having given birth to them. And in Nepal, persons with disabilities are seen as useless in the harsh mountainous areas, where poverty is so great that there is rarely enough food for the whole family.

20 Nov 2014 |

Press release: Funding from the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs provides vital winter aid to 12,000 Iraqi Internal Displaced Persons

With the funding from Mission East’s Humanitarian Partnership Agreement with the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Danish aid organisation now has the opportunity to help 12,000 Iraqi internal displaced persons who would otherwise be left without aid during the winter. Later this month Managing Director Kim Hartzner will travel to the area once again to participate in the distribution of the vital winter equipment.

13 Oct 2014 |

Mission East ensures winter help for the most needy in Iraq

While the fighting in northern Iraq and Syria continues, the Danish organisation, Mission East, intensifies relief efforts as winter nears in the Dohuk region of northern Iraq.

With temperatures dropping to freezing point in the upcoming winter months, relief aid is urgently needed in the Dohuk region of northern Iraq. In light of this, aid workers from the Danish organisation, Mission East, provide winterization for the most vulnerable displaced people.