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Video Clip Synopsis:
Moira Kelly begs for funds from international charities to bring children from war-torn Albania to Australia for medical treatment. One of the children almost dies, but the results are worth the risks.

2min 25sec

Helping Children in War-Torn Countries is an excerpt from the film A Compassionate Rage (55 mins), produced in 2001.

A Compassionate Rage: Moira Kelly has run an AIDS clinic for children in Romania, been house mother at an Aboriginal mission, worked in India with Mother Teresa, nursed crack babies in the Bronx and set up schools for kids in Bosnia. She brings those in need of surgery from war zones to hospitals in the US, Canada, Ireland and Australia. Now, after three years dedicated to ill, injured and impoverished children in Albania, she’s creating a haven for young people on a farm outside Melbourne. She has been called an angel of mercy and a pain in the neck. One thing's for certain - she won’t let anything stand in her way.

A Compassionate Rage is a Film Australia National Interest Program in association with Vue Pty Ltd. Developed with the assistance of the Australian Film Commission and Cinemedia’s Film Victoria. Produced with the assistance of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

Study Module

Curriculum Focus: Health/PE
Year: 9-10
Strand: Health of individuals and populations
Theme: Health Work

Key Concepts

The role of individuals in the care of others; Volunteering work; International Aid

Curriculum Applicability Notes

ACT:Health and Physical Education: Health of individuals and populations
NSW:Personal Development, Health and Physical Education: Personal choice, Promoting health
NT:Health and Physical Education: HP5.1, HP5+.1
Qld:Health and Physical Education: Promoting the health of individuals and communities 6.5, DB 6.5
SA:Health and Physical Education: 5.5, 5.6
Tas:Personal Futures: Standard 5, Being ethical, Creating and pursuing goals
Vic:Health and Physical Education: Health of individuals and populations 5.2, 6.2, 6.4
WA:Health and Physical Education: Attitudes and Values, Inter-personal skills

Context / Background Information

Moira Kelly has devoted her life to the service of others. When she was eight years old she saw a documentary at school about the late Mother Theresa's work in the slums of Calcutta. When she arrived home she told her mother that one day she would work with Mother Theresa. Many years later she did work with the nun and that is when she developed her own personal philosophy - 'Wherever there is the greatest evil, the greatest good can be achieved'.

As well as working in India, she has worked for aid agencies in Bosnia and Romania. Now she works on her own, bringing sick and injured children from war-torn countries to Australia for operations that can save lives or provide a better quality of life for severely affected children. Surgeons donate their services and the children recuperate on a farm near Kilmore in Victoria that was donated by a member of Rotary.

Moira Kelly says that she is happy to sacrifice marriage and the chance to have her own children to help those of other people.

In 1999 she established the Children First Foundation of which she is the Executive Director.

Discussion Pointers

  1. Discuss what students know about the work of Mother Theresa.
  2. Discuss the reasons for wars in Bosnia and Albania.
  3. Moira Kelly was inspired by the work of Mother Theresa. Ask the group to discuss any inspirations to their lives and to compare personal philosophies.
  4. Discuss the role(s) that wealthier countries have in dealing with the health issues of poorer countries.
  5. Discuss what is meant by the terms ‘aid worker’ and ‘aid agency’. How are aid workers funded?

Suggested Classroom Activities

Before watching the video clip students could brainstorm what they know about health issues of children in poorer countries, especially those affected by war.

Research the life of Mother Theresa and write a short biography.

Collect newspaper clippings about children from other countries who have undergone surgery and find out how they were funded.

Find out about the Federal Government’s involvement is helping less well developed countries. How much funding is given to which countries?

Find out more about the Children First Foundation. Find out about other organisations that support children from other countries who need medical treatment, are injured, orphaned or who need financial support (eg Care Australia, Community Aid Abroad, Rotary Clubs, The Red Cross, Medecins Sans Frontiers, Volunteers Abroad etc). Compare:

  1. the work they do
  2. whether volunteers are used
  3. the cost of sponsoring a child

Ask students to develop a personal philosophy of overseas aid. How would it be implemented?

Modules That Use This Clip

Health/PE Year 9-10, English Year 9-10, English Year 7-8