Health
 Haiti
Project #4583

Haiti Rehabilitation Centre

by Hope Health Action
Vetted
Dec 3, 2012

Inspiring hope, and a generation of Paralympians in Haiti

Haitian Paralympian, Leon Gaisli in training
Haitian Paralympian, Leon Gaisli in training

The summer was a very exciting time for the rehab team, and for the whole of Haiti, as the first Paralympic team competed in the London 2012 games! Josue Cajuste and Nephtalie Jean-Louis competed in the shot and javelin competitions, and Leon Gaysli competed in the handbike events – both representing their country, and also demonstrating to their country that disabled people have the ability to achieve great things.

Leon Gaisli was injured in the earthquake of January 2010, with a spinal injury which means that he is now a wheelchair user. The same earthquake also caused the death of his wife, and 8 of his children – an unimaginable loss, and one from which Leon could not see much hope. He arrived at our spinal rehab centre with a poor prognosis, with many thinking he was not likely to live. Through using sport as a rehabilitative tool, however, he found a reason to get up in the morning, and started working towards ‘the dream’ of competing at the Paralympic games. Leon competed in the time trail event for handbike, and although he finished last, it was an incredible experience. Coming in 20 minutes behind the rest of the field, but not giving up, by the time he crossed the line the entire crowd knew who he was (thanks to the 20 minutes of commentary about his story!) and was chanting his name! Purchasing the rights to show the Paralympic games on Haitian television, we also ensured that his home country could see his great achievement.

The legacy of the Olympics is something which is often discussed in the UK, and we are proud to be part of making our contribution so that all which was achieved by disabled athletes will not be forgotten, but will be built upon for future generations. With funding from the United Nations, construction is underway on a purpose-built inclusive sports centre at our site, where disability sports can be pioneered and promoted within Haiti. We also plan to deliver integrated sports activities for young people, where children who are disabled and able-bodied can play together and learn about each others life experiences.

Please do join with us as we step forward in this exciting new venture as we help Haitians of all abilities realise their potential, and help train the Haitian paralympians of the future!

Josue Cajuste practising the Shot Put
Josue Cajuste practising the Shot Put

Links:

Comments:

About Project Reports

Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to globalgiving.org by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.

If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating.

Get Reports via Email

We'll only email you new reports and updates about this project.

Organization Information

Hope Health Action

Location: West Wickham, Kent - United Kingdom
Website: http:/​/​www.hopehealthaction.org
Project Leader:
Barry Mann
Volunteer
Bromley, United Kingdom

Learn more about GlobalGiving

Teenage Science Students
Vetting +
Due Diligence

Snorkeler
Our
Impact

Woman Holding a Gift Card
Give
Gift Cards

Young Girl with a Bicycle
GlobalGiving
Guarantee

Sign up for the GlobalGiving Newsletter
WARNING: Javascript is currently disabled or is not available in your browser. GlobalGiving makes extensive use of Javascript and will not function properly with Javascript disabled. Please enable Javascript and refresh this page.