Sunday, January 09, 2011

Haiti Wrap up…for now

imageMost of the team are still in Haiti, seeing children in 5 more clinics and working at the orphanage washing clothes, doing construction and caring for the 46 children that we have there. I had to return to give some scheduled lectures at the medical school where I teach the Ethics and Humanism curriculum.  The picture above is of  some of the orphans that I saw before I left Haiti yesterday. They are a little sicker than the other children we saw, but should do well.

We did what we came there to do: cholera education, nutritional assessment and rescue, and physical exams.  We will have seen over 1600 children by the time the rest of the team leaves. Interesting how we go with expectations of things gone sour due to the cholera and come back with satisfaction knowing that all the preparation, intervention and implementation of the prevention and education programs we put in place worked. I’ve been one for cauti0n over confidence. We were cautious in what we did, never getting too righteous about what we did. What was striking was the humility that each team member had. Too many times I’ve seen superiority complexes glazed in a thin veneer of concern. Not this team: Kelly, Michael, Tanner, Dave, Danielle, Allison, Annelyssa, Thelma, Michelle, Trisha, Lon, Deanna, Anne and Yolie.  Each had a pervasive concern for human welfare. So does MoM and Medical Mercy. Things will move slowly in Haiti as it does in many countries that suffer a poor infrastructure, a government that is far from stable and a physical country that is broken. I expect it to be many many years before we see significant changes overall. But…and this is the “but” that will make you smile. Our MoM children are far from that stagnant recovery. They are progressing at a fast rate, remaining healthy and growing. A few are outside the norm, but we identified them, and began efforts to begin moving them into the fold.

We’ll go back. Not right away, but sometime.We’re headed to Ethiopia and Bangladesh later on this year.  In the meantime, we’ve achieved a sense of “sustainability” of the medical care that the children need, the nutritional support they need, and the cholera education and prevention that they need.  Sustainability. Leaving in place a process that insures a long and healthy life, physically and spiritually. And so it ends, for now.

In all things give thanks,