Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty ImagesFour of Madonna‘s children are from the African nation of Malawi, so helping that country’s citizens are high on the Queen of Pop’s “to-do” list. The latest project from her Raising Malawi charity makes its debut next week.
On Tuesday, the Mercy James Institute for Pediatric Surgery and Intensive Care will officially open at the Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre, Malawi. It’s named after Madonna’s daughter, Mercy James, and is described as, “the first unit of its kind in Malawi.”
In a statement, Madonna says, “When you look into the eyes of children in need, wherever they may be, a human being wants to do anything and everything they can to help, and on my first visit to Malawi, I made a commitment that I would do just that.”
She adds, “Malawi has enriched my family more than I could have ever imagined. It’s important for me to make sure all my children from the country maintain a strong connection to their birth nation, and equally important to show them that together, humans have the power to change the world for the better.”
The unit will help the hospital double the number of surgeries performed on children each year, as well as increasing the chance of survival. In addition, the unit will train more local doctors to perform pediatric surgery: currently, there are only four in the entire country of Malawi, and 50% of the population is under the age of 15.
Other features of the unit include a playroom for kids, an outdoor play area, and murals curated by Madonna.
Madonna has a son, David, and three daughters from Malawi: Mercy James and twins Stella and Esther.
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