It’s time for 10 Questions with Mercy Ships ward nurse Katelyn Wall! This is how Katelyn brings hope and healing to the people of Senegal.
1. How long have you been serving with Mercy Ships? I have been serving with Mercy Ships since the beginning of September!
2. When you’re not serving with Mercy Ships, what do you do back in Australia? Back home in Melbourne, Australia, I work in an emergency department, looking after both adults and children.
3. Why do you love serving with Mercy Ships? Working with Mercy Ships has reminded me of the power of hope and friendship. It is a blessing growing up in a country where many things came to me freely and easily, but it is not the reality of a lot of the world. Being able to share medical knowledge, the hope I have personally found in Jesus, and together, in friendship, help one another, is a real privilege.
4. What do the people of Senegal mean to you? The people of Senegal have taught me so much about persevering, about joy and friendship and they have reminded me that no one is out of reach from the love that God has for them. They have shown me that healing comes in many forms and they continually remind me to celebrate all the little milestones that we make each day.
5. What’s your favourite thing about waking up each day on board the ship? I love waking up each day knowing that today I get to do what I love, loving in the best way I know how, and watching lives be literally transformed before mine. Getting to do that with 400 other people, from all over the world, every day, is something really special.
6. What one thing has surprised you the most about serving with Mercy Ships? I have been surprised at how quickly change happens. Our patients arrive, often ashamed and sometimes ostracised. They have their surgery, and immediately they look different. The physical healing is amazing, but what I love more is watching them move away from shame and come fully alive. Watching those changes day after day, watching them find hope again, is a beautiful thing.
7. Which on board tradition do you love the most? I love pancakes on Wednesday mornings – I can always count on it being a good day when you start the day with pancakes!
8. What has living on board a ship with 400 other people taught you? That the world is a big place, and also a small place at the same time. That as humans, from different walks of life, we can all come together for the same goal: to see the world unified in hope and love. Together we can do and be better and by sharing our knowledge and experiences with each other, we can really improve outcomes.
9. Tell us one thing that you wish that you’d known before joining Mercy Ships. Before I came, I wish I knew how much I already had to contribute, just by being me. For anyone feeling like they don’t have enough to give – your life and work experience is worth sharing. Come expecting to walk away richer than you came, because the stories of the people you meet here will largely impact you.
10. What would you tell someone who’s thinking of joining Mercy Ships? Don’t even think twice about coming. You have so much life and love to share with the people here, and in many ways, the hope that you bring can change another person’s life. You cannot put a value on that, so what’s stopping you?
Join Katelyn on board the Mercy Ship at mercyships.org.au/volunteer