MAST Global

Twenty Six
Years On

From Scotland to Madagascar

One dentist for every 300,000 people.
mast global
A New Ship Serving French-Speaking Island Nations
Can you imagine having only one dentist for every 300,00 people where you live?

That's one dentist for a city similar to the size of downtown Orlando, FL or Newcastle-upon-Tyne in the UK.

In Madagascar, that is the reality of everyday life!

YWAM Ships Switzerland is a ministry with a vision to meet this need by launching small ships and boats into the French-speaking world among the islands of the French Caribbean, the Indian Ocean and French Polynesia. Partnering with an in-country ministry that has already planted over 30 primary health care posts around the eastern coast in the region of Tamatave, the goal is to reach even more coastal communities only easily accessible by water.
MV Island Reach

At the end of 2021, the ministry purchased a vessel in Scotland. Originally a Royal Navy tug built on the Clyde, it was most recently owned by a UK charity intending to use it on Lake Victoria, Tanzania. The newly named Island Reach sailed on December 4th from Greenock to Wales, UK and is currently docked where the Conwy tides allow ease of access to the hull.

Plans are in place for installing a dental surgery, an ophthalmologist's clinic and a dispensary in the two cargo holds, plus possibly a small operating theatre for day surgeries. She will be alongside in Wales for the winter months, with initial work done on board while she is prepared for the long 8,500-mile sail to Madagascar.

MV Island Reach
Currently docked alongside in Conwy, UK
PC: YWAM Ships Switzerland
Scotland to Madagascar

Twenty-six years ago, Sherry sailed into Madagascar having moved from the Borders region of Scotland a few months earlier to join a missions training program. Sailing into Tamatave from Durban, South Africa, with a 400-strong crew ready to embark on a 6-month medical outreach, it was her first exposure to cross-cultural ministry in a developing nation. Initial unease gave way to an appreciation for the people she met there, and the opportunities to understand and serve a very different culture.
Madagascar has a population of 24.4 million. 9 out of 10 people in Madagascar live on less than $2 per day. [1].
MAST Global Training

I've has been asked to provide seamanship and ship husbandry training as they plan for further conversion work. Operating a ministry vessel ship is no easy task. It requires not just trained crew, but medical and dental teams, volunteers and extra crew on the ground to coordinate logistics at each location it will dock in Madagascar.

As this vessel is making its way to Madagascar in 2022, we're planning for an entry-level training program to meet the needs of trainees, most of whom will be French-speaking Malagasy. Language barriers and cultural differences exist but we're looking forward to equipping the students to serve on board this small ship, so the vessel can facilitate essential medical, dental, and community services for the unreached communities on the east coast of Madagascar.

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- Matthew

"Part of reaching out to the community is teaching the values of why we serve."
- YWAM Ships Switzerland