For those who have been following our work more regularly via our web-site you'll have noticed that it's been a busy few months. It would be impossible to share everything in one update now, so please do take a look at our site.
However, to give you a little glimpse into the highs and lows of recent months we wanted to share one particular blog with you by some of our team who have been on the ground in Haiti...
'When I first came to Haiti I was struck by the tragic injustice of seeing an 11 year old girl called Julia die simply because the doctors didn’t have the basic equipment to save her. It was an image I’ll never forget, and one that changed my life forever. Yet since living in Haiti, the tragic loss of seeing children die has become all too much a part of weekly existence. So much so that at times the tragic health care situation here becomes almost ‘normal.’
In the last few weeks my heart has been broken afresh by the reality of what it is we’re called together to do. One of our children at Maison de Benediction had a seizure last week and was subsequently referred to the Government Hospital. The next day I went to visit this little one with a few friends who were visiting. It was my first time in the pediatric ward for several months. In some ways I’d forgotten just how tragic this little ward is, but also just how inspiring.
I was greeted by Dr Toussaint who took me to see the little boy. We walked through the dimly lit ward, surrounded by old rusty cots holding the fragile bodies of a host of malnourished and poorly children. When we arrived besides the bed of our little child, I looked as I have done many times into the eyes of Dr Toussaint to ask his prognosis. He looked at me with the same frustration and familiarity as he has done many times before. ‘The prognosis is poor’ he said. ‘He needs a CT scan but we don’t have one in the North. He needs some equipment to clear his lungs but we don’t have one.’ It was a repeat of my first experience in Haiti. An inspiring and highly skilled doctor denied the right to save a child’s simply because of a lack of equipment. ‘We know what to do’ he continued ‘but we just don’t have anything.’ The next day we were informed that the little boy had sadly passed away. If I’m honest it came as no great surprise, but was never the less a harrowing and emotional reminder of why we’re here, and the battle for justice we face. Unjustly the battle for this little one had been lost on earth.
Yet, that same day we finally had three containers released from customs which was a great joy! Some had been stuck in customs for several months. All were packed full of aid from different NGO’s to support our earthquake relief effort. Yet there was one that delivered a particularly meaningful gift that day – 5 incubators and 2 baby bed warmers…pieces of equipment we’ve only dared to dream about. I’ve just started reading a book with the speeches of Martin Luther King, in which he says ‘Justice is love correcting that which revolts against love.’ Amidst the tragedy of seeing another child die that day, came an act of love from another NGO which sought to correct that injustice which revolts against so many children in Haiti. This was more than the delivery of some equipment. This was a delivery of hope, of justice, of progress, of a battle won.
The next day after hours of carefully getting these out of containers using an army of Haitian men, Dr Toussaint arrived on site. As we took him into the room where we are storing these incubators his face lit up like a child on Christmas day. I’ve never seen an adult smile with such joy, hope, happiness, and fulfillment. We all knew just what a difference these pieces of equipment would make and just how many lives they would save! It was this doctor’s dream to see children in Haiti given the support they deserve. After years of work, this was an epic step closer to that dream being fulfilled. A dream of equality, a dream of life and hope and justice. A dream of our little hospital in some small way correcting the darkness which has revolted against this poor nation for too many years. Another act of justice made possible by you, our supporters.
This day highlighted the battles won and the battles lost in our call to fight for equality and justice. It’s a battle worth fighting though, and one we hope you’ll join us on.'
If you'd like to respond to this blog in some way please take the time to make a donation to our project, share this entry with some friends or family, or visit our web-site: www.haitihospitalappeal.org
Thank you for your continued support of our work!
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