Première Urgence Internationale : Our history
Première Urgence Internationale was born from the merger between two French NGOs : Première Urgence and Aide Médicale Internationale.
The creation of Première Urgence Internationale
In 1979, the Afghan population was suffering as a result of the internal conflict and the Soviet invasion. Doctors, nurses, midwives and pharmacists of the “Aide Médicale Internationale” (AMI) association took action in the field, training the locals in medicine. Their slogan was: “Let’s help them do it without us”. For 31 years, AMI provided health support to populations in extremely hard-hit and conflict-affected areas, training local health staff, providing cross-border aid, and rebuilding medical facilities. “Backpack” doctors and nurses doing cross-border work became one of the calling cards of AMI.
In 1992, while the conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina was raging, three friends wanted to help the victims of this deadly war. To achieve their goal, they set up an organisation named “Première Urgence”. They collected medicine and food products, rented several trucks, and crossed Europe to reach Sarajevo, which was being bombed and was under siege. Following this experience, they decided to devote their lives to humanitarian action and Première Urgence became an NGO focused on providing aid in emergencies.
In 2011, the committed humanitarian workers of Première Urgence and the experienced doctors of Aide Médicale Internationale came together. They joined forces to help vulnerable populations around the world through humanitarian action in the form of emergency medical aid and the provision of health services. Première Urgence Internationale was born.
Today, Première Urgence Internationale works in Africa, Asia, Europe and the Middle East, operating in areas of armed conflict or in response to natural disasters. Première Urgence Internationale is now one of the largest French humanitarian NGOs.