Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Haiti

So many of us were affected by the news of the earthquake in Haiti in January. Many of us reached out to give financially to support various causes because we feel helpless to do much else. Prayers were sent up for the Haitian people as they struggled to heal after the devastating losses.

But now almost 4 months later the work still continues. We don’t hear news stories every hour on the hour like we used to or have telethons on TV, but in the towns and villages of Haiti there are people working to make a difference.

One of those people is my dad. He was asked by the Haitian Health Foundation to come to help with medical clinics in Jeramie and also to see where some of the food they are shipping with Kids Against Hunger is being received.

We have only received a few short e-mails from dad since he got there because communication is unreliable but I wanted to share a couple of his messages. I want to warn you….they aren’t “pretty”. The reality of the situation still is heartbreaking. And so I again am asking for your prayer for the Haitian people and for the teams of people that continue to go and donate their time to making a difference.

Today was another day spent with the O.D. doing eye exams. The doctor can provide a very quick but good exam in a few minutes. So good in fact that we saw 98 pts. today. There are always things that break your heart and today was no exception. A little boy about 2 came in with his mother. He was one of the thousands that came from Port au Prince and he had an eye injury. He had something imbedded in his eye and it had festered to the point that will require removing his eye. I'm thinking that a sliver of wood was driven into his eye and being an organic material slowly dissolved and was surrounded by a cyst. It had had grown until the eye was about 3 times the normal size. The eye pushed way out and resembled something that you would see in a horror movie. It was so tender and the child screamed when we tried to examine it. I told the mom I would help with travel expenses to La Caye by bus and I guess they will leave tomorrow. It is so cruel to see something like this.

The ward beside the area I am working is the Kwashiorkor floor. About 15 children are being saved from starvation. It is a slow return to health. I was struck by a little boy the same age as Isabel and Elijah. He showed little if any emotion. In fact his mother would set him on the middle of small bed and leave him there. He would sit motionless for over an hour. He fell forward on his face when he became too tired to stay up. It again breaks your heart. I know that we would never leave a one year old sitting on a bed where he could fall and hurt himself and yet this little boy sat there in a daze.

We saw several people that are seen at the clinic here for follow-up to earthquake injuries. A 12 yr old girl came in on crutches. She had a fractured femur in Jan. and sent here. The bone was never aligned or set and now she has one leg that is at least 2 inches shorter that the other. People with amputations are common and infection is also common.

We saw an elderly women who was blinded by her husband because of infidelity. No time served. When you think you have seen or heard it all something like this comes along.

As you can see work still needs to be done and I thank you for your willingness to lift up Haiti and the people there.

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