CRS Work in North Korea
CRS supports a health program established in collaboration with the Maryknoll Missionaries and the Eugene Bell Foundation (EBF). Initiated in 1998 following a tour of hospital facilities in North Korea, this program provides supplies such as x-ray machines, microscopes and medication that are used to diagnose and treat Tuberculosis (TB), a major health concern in North Korea. Focused in the northwestern provinces, this program established a relationship between CRS and North Korea's Ministry of Public Health. Supplies of medications, x-ray film and other medical items are replenished annually, and agricultural equipment and supplies are also provided in order to improve the patients' nutritional status.
In addition, CRS provides financial support to Caritas for the North Korea program administered by Caritas Hong Kong. Over the past eight years, the Caritas network (through Caritas Hong Kong) has provided $27 million worth of aid in the form of food, health equipment and medical supplies, as well as agricultural projects to millions of North Koreans. Target groups include:
- Children under five
- Pregnant and nursing women
- Orphaned and school-aged children
- The elderly
- People with special needs (i.e. the disabled and the chronically ill)
Caritas Hong Kong works mainly in the northeastern provinces and also provides clothes, shoes, medicine, and other necessities to approximately 8,000 children in boarding schools and orphanages.