In today's Jerusalem residents of the Old City often face daily restrictions moving to the outskirts of the city, where our main Jerusalem Hospital is situated. Many of its inhabitants are also stallholders, who rarely travel too far for fear of losing necessary income.
SJEHG has recently fully restored the Muristan to be a working walk-in clinic. The worst cases will be referred to the SJEHG flagship hospital in East Jerusalem, where patients will receive expert care and will not have to pay if they cannot afford to. The clinic will provide easy access to eye care (where early detection typically is key in saving sight).
The Clinic opened it's doors on international World Sight Day - October 13th 2016 and sees around 1,000 patients each year. Our Mobile Outreach manager, Marlene Katansho also travels to schools around the Old City to screen for eye conditions.
A wonderful consequence of the Muristan Clinic renovation is it has opened up an opportunity to encourage visitors to the Old City of Jerusalem to gain awareness of the work of St John Eye Hospital.
What it is missing from the Old City is a space to escape the masses - and our new Muristan Peace Garden will hopefully offer some peace in the midst of the chaos, whilst also serving as means to educate tourists on the great work and history of the Order of St John.
The garden also includes a beautiful new sculpture – The Tree of Hope - by world-renowned sculptor Mark Coreth, which is an olive tree with the canopy of swifts, migrating birds which are native to the city. In his own words Mark describes the tree as ‘a symbol of hope for a region that desperately needs it’, and we are hoping that these swifts will go on to become a symbol of St John Eye Hospital worldwide. Click on our tree below to help our swifts fly across the world.