Friday, January 29, 2010

Haiti Benefit Concert

The local artist community at Lowe Mill held a benefit concert and silent art auction where they raised over $11,000! It was all recorded live and the first session is posted on YouTube. Check it out, enjoy the incredible talents of Ken Waters on trumpet and keep the folks in need in your thoughts!


We'll post the additional sessions as they are made available.

UPDATE: Sorry about the broken link - I'll try to find out what happened to the video and update the link.
UPDATE: New link in effect.

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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Good article written by a Baptist Standard reporter on-site at Bon Samaritan.

I had thought about the language barrier, but didn't have a sense of what percentage spoke English well enough to communicate with a Doctor.  Any Creole-speaking medical folks out there that have not already been recruited?

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Troy is back!

Troy landed in Huntsville late last night and was here at Hudson Alpha this morning somewhat glazed and seemingly uncertain what to make of the easy availability of food and bathrooms, but otherwise ready to debrief and start downloading the rest of the intelligence that he gathered in Jimani and PaP.

First impressions -

Troy reports that Jimani Hospital (also being referred to as Bon Samaritan)  is running and running as well as it can thanks to strong leadership from Dorothy Davidson FNP along with her husband Dr. Dale Betterton through IMA. And while running the hospital is working Dorothy nearly round the clock, they do seem to be fairly well supplied and staffed and have taken excellent steps to better control and inventory on-site supplies, which was much needed. 

His initial assessment is for the Huntsville/Chadasha team to continue to supply Jimani as needed, but shift our focus to the out-patient facility that was established inside PaP just before he left.  The facility (located in a walled-in church) has proven to be workable and relatively secure, and it is providing much needed medical care to over 250 new patients each day and planning to increase that number as word gets out.  The idea is to continue to use Jimani as a physical staging point for supplying the PaP clinic directly.

More from Troy soon.

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Food distribution challenges in PaP for internation relief orgs

This is a difficult and sobering reality.  Near riots and stronger survivors forcing their way to the food while weaker people get nothing.  I'm tempted to judge the people who are fighting and scrambling over others to get anything they can, but the flip side of the equation is that I've never known desperation.  At this point providing order and protecting the weakest of the many victims is our responsibility.

We are continuing to work with people and organizations in Haiti who already have organized people on the ground, specific populations of people to serve, and the means to provide some security and order.  In particular, Brian Lloyd's Harvest Field Ministries is the focus of our food efforts, as his communities are very heavy with children and the elderly, who will need special protection from being trampled in the rush to survive.  Our medical mission continues to focus on Jimani and on the effort to establish "forward area" clinics in PaP.

Josh



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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Critical equipment help from Abbott Point-of-Care!

 We're thrilled that Abbott Point of Care has donated the use of TWO i-STAT portable blood analyzers and a supply of cartridges.  From Abbott's web site the i-STAT system is "an advanced, handheld blood analyzer that provides real-time, lab-quality results within minutes to accelerate the patient care decision-making process."


For our medical team in Jimani and Port-au-Prince it's like having an on-call lab in the palm of their hand, and gives the doctors critical data for making treatment decisions.  This is a really important tool, and a really expensive one, and we're grateful to Abbott Point-of-Care for entrusting them to our team for the duration of the medical mission in Haiti.

As an aside, here's the donation statement from Abbott Point-of-Care, it basically says 'no strings attached': "Abbott’s agreement to provide product as a charitable donation is not provided to you in exchange for any explicit or implicit agreement or understanding that you or anyone else prescribe, recommend, use or purchase any products of Abbott or otherwise arrange therefore."

Josh


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32 Hours: The Church in Haiti

Mark Driscoll just got back from a 32 hour trip to Haiti to assess damage and check on the state of the churches in Haiti. Here he discusses his trip to Haiti. Must watch.


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Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Huntsville Soccer-heads helping Haiti!

This being the south, it may be news to some of you to realize that there's more than one kind of football in the world, and that Hatians, for the most part, play the other kind.  For anyone still confused, I'm talking about soccer.

 Ryan Harbaugh writes for and about the Huntsville soccer community at his Perfectly Weighted Through Blog.  Someone with more soccer knowledge than me can explain what that blog title means, but Ryan has a couple of really interesting posts here and here about the crisis in Haiti, connections to the global soccer community, and ways to help out including food donations here at Hudson Alpha and Trinity UMC.

If you play or watch soccer (or know someone who plays or watches soccer) head on over to Ryan's blog and ask how you can help partner with him and us on a future shipment of soccer equipment to help those kids begin, in Ryan's words, a "return to normalcy" in the coming months.


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Updated needs list for Huntsville/Madison Area donations

There is still an urgent need for food (especially rice, dry beans, and powdered milk) and we're adding to the list durable plastic tarps, plastic sheeting, nylon rope (for making tents out of tarps), and lightweight military-style folding cots. 

At $34 we feel like this model available from Walmart represents a good value and a good example of the kind of thing the Doctors are looking for to get their patients up off the ground.









Our sincere thanks to those who have already made donations of desperately needed food and supplies for the people of Haiti.  Please keep giving!

Josh

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Monday, January 25, 2010

CitiHope Update from Jimani: excellent partners serving Haiti

Medical Relief a Success - Next is FOOD
January 25, 2010
Dear Luke,

Thank you for bringing hope to Haitian earthquake victims through your support of CitiHope. This update showcases the impact your donations and prayers are having - we are grateful.

CitiHope's overall response has grown to include a significant food security dimension, and considerable on-the-ground coordination support. Paul II and his team are still in the field, and I hope you take a moment to read about their experiences as they proudly represents both CitiHope and you.

In our relief work, CitiHope purposes to obtain the maximum strategic resources, at the minimum cost, in the shortest period of time, to give health and hope to the greatest number of people possible. 'Hope for Haiti' is truly exceeding that goal, thanks to you.

God's best,
Rev. Paul Moore and the CitiHope Team
www.citihope.org

Urgent Request for Food Help
Hope for Haiti Phase II Launching
As reported in our last email, Le Bon Samaritan Hospital is normally a 23-bed facility. Since the earthquake, they are caring for over 800 patients daily, with constant helicopters arriving and departing with Haitians needing treatment. Seen at right, a 'displaced patients camp' of sorts now exists right outside of the hospital. Conditions are reminiscent of military field hospitals many of us have seen in TV shows such as MASH.

CitiHope delivered 4,000 meals on one of our Saturday flights, which is just enough for two days. Unfortunately, the food aid being delivered by other agencies to Port au Prince still has not made it north to Jilmani, and CitiHope has been asked for further help.

A three-week-supply of food is urgently needed for the 800+ patients plus their caregivers. In the last two days CitiHope has secured 21,000 meals (roughly 3,000lbs) of a vitamin-fortified, nutritious and culturally palatable dehydrated soup mix from Stop Hunger Now/Operation Sharehouse. (The soup contains long grain rice, soy protein, vitamins, and dehydrated celery, carrot, cabbage, tomato, pepper, and is easily adaptable to several local favorite recipes.)

Paul II and his team have already begun construction of an outdoor kitchen, and ample volunteers are on hand to prepare and serve the meals.

The field team is gathering all available pots for cooking, bowls for serving and utensils, but we anticipate having to purchase some items.

Our challenge today is securing funding to move the food to our US airport staging location, fuel and fly a DC-3 airplane to Barahona, and then on to Jilmani for distribution. After receiving word today of a significant second donation by partners World Children's Fund and Medical Missions International, we're now estimating that we just need to raise an additional $36,000 to execute Hope for Haiti's Phase II, Food Security.

Together we are making a world of difference for good, for Haitians at risk... and you're help is essential. Please consider supporting Phase II with your most generous financial gift, and pass this urgent opportunity along to a friend who might also assist this impactful work. Most of all, please keep Hope for Haiti in your thoughts and prayers.
Hope for Haiti, Phase I Huge Success
Medical Relief and More!
In the Jilmani region, CitiHope is one of the principle relief agencies on the scene thanks to our rapid medical response, and Paul II and his team have become known as the 'go to' people when needs arise. In addition to our medical relief being delivered, here are highlights of what has occurred in just a week:
CitiHope was the first agency to figure out that bringing relief flights through Dominican Republic's Barahona Airport was the most strategic option. The US Air Force moved in over the weekend, and now their personnel and CitiHope staff are the only ones allowed on the tarmac!
Our DR Country Director Tim Tuccelli was given favor with the airport authorities, customs, and Governor of the region, and CitiHope has since become their partner of record.
We now have two trucks driving back and forth to Jilmani, not only with our own aid, but essentials coming in from other organizations who don't have their on the ground coordinates in place.
At Le Bon Samaritan hospital, CitiHope has provided a variety of essential needs. Here are a few highlights:
* The doctors needed additional exam tables, so CHI built and delivered them within 24 hours.
* The doctors desperately needed an autoclave to sterilize their instruments - it was delivered over the weekend.
* The hospital needed telecommunications and water purification systems, and they were on our first flight in.
* On Friday the hospital administrators requested long-range walkie-talkies, so Mike DiBenedetto and his St. Simons Island, GA team shipped them via flight #4 on Saturday.
* This morning Paul II asked for help getting 20 Gerber tool kits and multi-tools for his new friends in the ground crew. CitiHope is already procuring them from local stores in GA for the next air delivery tomorrow.
* A storage warehouse was lacking, so CitiHope dropped a 40 ft sea container in 48 hours, and are in the process of obtaining a local secure building as a permanent facility, to be operational by tomorrow/Wednesday.
* A kitchen capable of feeding the influx of patients is needed, so Paul II and his team have begun construction of an outdoor, open-air kitchen which will be finished this week.
CitiHope continues to respond to daily medical needs in Jilmani. Paul II is coordinating requests for help directly with hospital staff, whose focus continues to be patient care. Dr. Pinard and his team of staff and volunteers are extraordinary heroes.

Even Blankets Matter
Reported by Paul Moore II - Saturday, Jan 23. Last night at around 3am tremors woke the refugees here at camp. They rushed from the orphanage and sought shelter in the field. It gets cold here at night so men, women, and children were shivering in the cold.

Then someone remembered the CitiHope manifest and ran to our 'temporary warehouse' container. There they found enough thermal blankets for everyone. The camp stood still as doctors and nurses began to lovingly place these warm blankets on people in need.

When dealing with such a large-scale human disaster it is easy to become overwhelmed with the massive needs. Personally, I was grateful for the reminder that even 'simple' thermal blankets matter.

Quick Links
CitiHope Home

Hope for Haiti, Issue 1, Jan 18

Hope for Haiti, Issue 1, Jan 21

More About Us

One of the many Haitian children at the Le Bon Samaritan Hospital in Jilmani given hope, medical attention and nutrition through your caring support.

Together with her, and thousands like her, we say Thank You!


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Medical Update from Troy

Jenny-

We got a generator, fuel and a water purification system set up in the PAP house yesterday. 
From Troy 25JAN10

Today a 7 truck caravan left from Jimani brining food, water, medications, 3 nurses, 1 doctor and a host of support persons.  This team will begin clinics in PAP this afternoon.  This is a test to see if we can maintain order/safety while performing the clinics.  I think the church we will be working out of will serve quite well and I'm not expecting any issues.  The Jimani hospital team is working with a US physician to have a step down facility set up in his clinic.  The idea there is to send non-critical patients there and build up the site to serve as an ongoing minor surgery center.

From Troy 25JAN10


In the PAP clinics, I would expect to see infections, cuts, abrasions, malnutrition, etc.  Any serious injuries (i.e. fractures) will be directed back to Jimani. I think the current needs list would be for items that meet these issues in addition to preparing for the infection issues that are inevitably going to arise.

Troy

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Ed: Back in the USA

Dear Family and Friends,

Back in the USA!


From Landry/Haiti

I have waited a day to send this final note about my time in Jimani. Kelley and Luke helped me get the photos arranged so I can share them with any interested. I must warn you that some are gruesome so please use your best judgment in viewing them.

We left the Jimani Project Saturday, January 23 about 9 AM for the airport in Barahona. Before boarding the bus, each of our group had last minute desires. Check on this patient, get a photo of that, where’s Dr. XZY, etc. Bill Ragon and Mike Cobb had special concern for a burn patient they’d spent hours with earlier in the week. He was loaded up and set for transfer to one of the Navy hospital ships, with a helicopter due in shortly after our departure. I never did see it happen, but I do believe it did, thanks to Clint’s persistence and Caleb’s satellite link which enabled communication with the ships.

When we got to the airport in Barahona, we met a large group of firefighters from CA, “Firefighters for Christ” their shirts said, from multiple locations. They were mesmerized by Dave Vanderpool’s stories of his trips into PAP. I think that’s where they were headed, but I don’t know if they knew themselves where they’d be sleeping Saturday night. We also found the US Air Force setting up a base at the runway’s edge, for coordination of incoming flights with supplies. Sounds like the Barahona airport will be a staging area for what needs to go by road into Haiti in the coming weeks. Chuck Sutherland’s plane came in loaded with meds, etc. to put on our now empty bus for the return trip to Jimani. We found Mike Cobb’s name on some of the boxes, those had been left in Knoxville on our trip down for lack of space. So you can imagine just how hard it is to get a box of this or that from the US to Haiti. Mike’s supplies had been in the Knoxville airport since January 18.

So we had to stop in Atlanta for customs and Chuck left us for his grandchildren with the pilots to fly us on to Tennessee. I did not actually kiss the asphalt in front of his hangar, but I admit to some jumping up and down!

Now we’re all back home with thoughts of patients we left behind. Mike’s worried about a woman whose arm was amputated to free her from rubble. He had to revise the amputation twice due to skin loss and infection. Bill worries about the burn victim he got thru the longest operation done while we were there. John Williamson left his patient post emergency hysterectomy with fever, though it was declining. Neil Barry had so many patients I can’t tell who he was the most concerned for. Dave left thinking he could have gotten more injured out of PAP if he just had a bigger vehicle. Chuck, Mr. Fix-It to the end, left wondering if the broken pump for the water supply he’d correctly diagnosed as shorted out would get fixed quickly (we lost all running water at 2 AM, Saturday morning because of the fried pump). And I left worrying about I month old Annika (I had her name wrong earlier). I gave her over to Dr. Ben from Boston, and feel sure he’ll do whatever it takes to save her arm.

I am left, naturally, with some striking images from this experience. Our group shared some of these with each other Friday night over dinner. Everyone had incredible moments of unbounding joy. My own personal moment came Wednesday, January 20. I found 2 huge boxes of new sheets lying on the grass outside the hospital, a gift from only God knows who. I carried as many as I could hold, and grabbed a young volunteer to do the same. We then gave all the patients in recovery, who had been on bare mattresses only (some blood stained), clean, new white sheets. I wish I could describe the look on the faces of patients and family members. I felt like Santa Claus!

There were, of course, many episodes less than joyous. Mike Cobb explaining through an interpreter to a dying woman’s family that her only hope of survival was amputation of 3 extremities. He did the absolute best anyone could possibly have done to answer all their questions and fears. She refused and did die 24 hours later. For me, it was having to remove the burned skin from baby Annika’s forearm. It’s just a nightmare.

This last story is about Clint Doiron and faith. The Jimani project was Clint’s dream. Now, as one of the Knoxville crew pointed out, it is Clint’s Noah’s ark. He built it, and finished just in time to take on those sent there.

From Landry/Haiti
So when Clint went into PAP on Wednesday, he came across 2 Catholic nuns in a vehicle with injured Haitians. One was a 7 year old boy with a facial injury. Clint was sure there was a fracture and told them to come to the Jimani Project hospital. So the nuns did just that. When they arrived, the nonmedical person in charge of signing in patients told them they couldn’t leave the patients there. He basically said “there’s no room in the inn and you’ve got a van, take them on elsewhere, besides we have no one who can handle this head injury”. When Clint got back later, he was asking for the young boy’s location. I told him what I had heard had happened (I was not there, but was in the OR). He would not accept the possibility that patients he had personally promised care to had been turned away. He anxiously searched the orphanage (remember it is 2 stories with probably 400 patients and family) until he found the boy. Now I know the nuns were shunned by the “gatekeeper”, but then again I’ve had some small, personal experience with Catholic nuns in the course of my life (beginning at age 6 with the School Sisters of Notre Dame), and I know damn well you cannot tell one NO! (if you do….straight to Hell!). The nuns had essentially ignored the gatekeeper, found a nurse, and parked the patients exactly where they needed to be. Next Clint wants me to look at the boy, well it’s a bone and it is broken, right? The plastics guys looked too. Clearly there was nothing we could do at Jimani for him. But you see, Clint had promised because he had faith that doing the right thing would lead to the child’s getting the right care. By Friday, some of the volunteers (I am not sure who) had taken the child back to PAP, to the airport where the U of Miami had a field trauma hospital. They felt he needed a neurosurgeon, the one specialty they did not have available! So what did they do? Well they violated several international laws, probably dissolved our treaties with the rest of the Caribbean and Central American nations and flew the child back to their neuro pals in Miami! So I learned that it’s not just doing what’s right, but it is having the faith that when you do God is your back-up. Thanks Clint.

Last word, remember a few of my photos are from in the OR, and may be difficult for some. Here's the link to the album.

Love,
Dad/Ed



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Saturday, January 23, 2010

SIFAT(Servants in Faith and Technology): HUGE BOOST!

HUGE THANKS TO TOM CORSON and TREY REED!

SIFAT (www.sifat.org) showed up today and began the process of deploying their MUCH NEEDED water purification systems into Haiti. They have integrated themselves into the teams in Jimani and begun training. They expect to have all 10 systems deployed by next week. This is half of the story...

The OTHER HALF IS THIS... late last night around 2am the Jimani facility ran out of water. With close to 1,000 people relying on their water system, this was a huge problem. Well Tom and Trey jumped right in and have been working non-stop and have REESTABLISHED water at Jimani. I am told this was an incredibly harrowing experience and one that we will have more information about on the blog soon.

THANKS TO SIFAT WE ARE STILL DISTRIBUTING PURE WATER.

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Devastation in Haiti video - Mark Driscoll



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Pictures from Jimani

a few photos from jimani giving our readers a glimpse into the controlled chaos!








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Brian Lloyd Update #10

Update #10
Hey guys, this one is from me, Rachel. Brian has been overwhelmed with the task at hand the last few days and has not been able to send us an e-mail update. So, I will try to summarize what I know to the best of my ability.

It has been a hard few days on the ground in Haiti. The work to procure food, water, and necessities has been difficult. Since Brian has been working by himself trying to get enough supplies to care for many, many people in these three communities, it is harder to do. Making contacts in this situation is near impossible because everybody is in need and tensions are high, even among relief workers. Pray that people there, especially among relief workers and other ministries will remember that we are all called to help and we are all apart of the same kingdom... His Kingdom. There is a job to be done and we must lock arms, regardless of faith and culture, and complete it together. Differences in culture, hunger, stress, lack of a home, lack of anything causes fuses to be short, but our God is bigger than that and we believe He will pull us through! I know I've said it before, but just keep praying!!

Some good news is that a team from our home church, Whitestone Church, arrived in Jacmel yesterday with 6 men and some supplies. There were 3 doctors, 1 EMT, a really cool former military guy (Tamara, that's your guy!!), and a pastor. The things they were able to take will take care of some immediate needs in the community. The docs say that the Coq Chante community is okay medically so today they will be trying to go closer to Leogande to see if there is a need at the hospital there. There has been very little medical help in this area as of yet so we are hoping that they will be able to get to work and do some good.

About the girls... the first thing is that Brian says they are so resilient! He said they wake up in the morning and pray, sing worship songs and then play, read, run, laugh, tease, and do hair... what a beautiful picture. They are continuing to sleep in a little house or shack that is close to the orphanage. I'll attach a picture. Remember as you see this picture that there are 17 girls, 1 helper (Madame Gaspard), and her two youngest sons. They will not go into any concrete building, and Brian says he doesn't blame them a bit after the 6.1 "aftershock" they had yesterday. Which leads me to ask, what in the world distinguishes an actual earthquake from an aftershock, good Lord 6.1.

We also have good news on the adoption front. Through a government program called Humanitarian Parole, we are going to be able to get the children who are already in the process of adoption here. Thank you God! This includes, Wousami Bates, Islande Stout, Odette Coleman, Benita Rudd, Jayla Fitzpatrick, and Valencia Zimmerman. Be praying for these kids and their families to make a smooth transition. We are also hopeful that will be able to get the rest of the girls here through the same program. We have had an overwhelming response from our Whitestone Church family to take the girls into their homes and love them, take care of them, and make sure they get what they need. Thanks Whitestone family!

As for Brian, he is doing well. He is exhausted emotionally probably more than physically. He has a strong love for the people of Haiti and seeing them in this situation tears at his heart. We are hoping that he will be able to come home in the next few days to rest, pray, refuel, pray, shower : ), and pray some more. There are lots of decisions to be made and they are larger than any one man. Pray for clarity and discernment. Pray that God continue to guard his heart and to give Brian a peace that surpasses all understanding.

Thanks to all of you who have given financially to Harvest Field Ministries or just to help Haiti in general. More than that, I would like to say thank you to everyone who has lifted Brian, our family, and mostly the Haitian people up in prayer.

If anyone would like more information on Harvest Field Ministries and the work we do in Haiti please visit www.harvestfieldhaiti.org.


Blessings,

Rachel Lloyd, Brian's wife

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Jimani Update: 1.22.10

Dear Family and Friends,

First of all, I deeply appreciate all the love, prayers and support you are sending my way. I feel very honored to receive such grace.

So today from chaos, some order. We got up with roosters making noise just before sun-up. Mike Cobb and I were in the OR by 7:30 AM and worked together until about 6PM. We made up for yesterday’s frustration thanks to my new hero, Dr. Ben an ortho/hand surgeon from Boston (last names hard to come by here). Looks like Harry Connick, Jr. so Ben Hollywood could do. He arrived yesterday, and was stymied by the lack of an OR for him to use. Within hours he happily accepted his new calling in life to run the OR schedule for 5 operating rooms, 11 orthpaedists, 2 plastic surgeons and an unknown number of pending patients. Without picking up a scalpel he did more than enough to credit him with the gold star of the day. We sent our #1 OR ortho nurse, Danya from Omaha/Creighton , to the orphanage/hospital to line up surgeries since she understood our capabilities. Patients have to be moved by ambulance the 200 yards from orphanage to hospital. Lots of bumps, dust and heat. Lots of lifting up and down, carrying stretchers. No one complains. Ben said we did 58 surgeries (still without Xray) with only one cranky surgeon from CA giving him a hard time. So do we feel well accomplished? I just don’t know how to even measure progress here.

As we worked along thru the day we heard various reports. Some are checking in with CNN, some have family sending odd news reports asking if we can confirm. Luke, I saw your note about US support. I hope your “tree shaking” reaches the right person. So from “rumor” the USS Comfort is either full or not doing anything. The U of Miami has a field trauma unit at the airport in PAP, and may take some critical patients from us, but the critical probably can’t handle the car/truck ride. Clint/Dave Vanderpool/Luke are all pushing for help to get patients moved out of here, we all wonder which agency is going to step up to the plate.

We still saw patients today who had no significant care since their injuries. I honestly don’t know how they are getting here. One was a 70 year old lady for whom Mike did external fixation for a femur fracture, completely by feel, since no Xray. We are all amazed by the strength they show. They have tolerated so much pain, and frankly we sometimes just look at each other in the OR wondering HOW DID THIS PERSON SURVIVE THE LAST 10 DAYS? The Haitians look after each other quietly and with dignity in the most bare of surroundings. We had one woman today whose right arm was cut off to get her out of the rubble. Mike revised the amputation and has her lined up with plastic surgeons from Gainesville for skin grafts on Sunday. She never stopped smiling, never complained, yet I am sure she is in pain. And there are far more just like her.

I have so many stories, I may not be able to keep them straight. Some are just too terrible to put to writing. This is a small part of one, with a lot omitted that goes into the too terrible category. Our OB-GYN professor from Lincoln Memorial Medical School in TN saved a young woman’s life early today. Dr. John Williamson has been coming to Jimani with Clint for years. A nurse came looking for him late last night. The patient was about 20 weeks pregnant when she was crushed in the quake. The baby died and she appeared here out of nowhere with high fever. I really don’t want to go into the medical issues, but when John told her husband emergency surgery was needed at 2AM, he agreed without question. When John said, “Do you understand how serious this is?”, he replied “Because you are doing it now at 2AM I know it is very serious and you are doing the right thing because no one in my country would ever have an operation at this time”. Clint was there for the whole surgery, and I know he will have much more to say about it.

There was a very minor tremor here about dark, none of us felt it but the patients and their families lying on mattresses on concrete floors did and ran out of the orphanage into the parking lot area. I did not see this, but 2 patients with IV’s jumped from the second floor. 3 docs went to check them out. Danya was just getting things in order again, putting people back to bed, when we felt another, bigger jolt. This is the first thing I have noticed so I am now in our bus typing away for awhile. I’ll go check on my post-op patients in a little bit.

When we occasionally stop and look beyond the Jimani Project at the surrounding views, this is a beautiful spot. There is a large lake with vistas to green cliffs in the distance. Hawaii is the only place I can compare this to. But, it is much hotter than Hawaii! Must have been 100 degrees in the sun at midday and 90 in the OR. I consumed well over a gallon of fluid today. I can’t imagine how this adds to the stress on our patients, we keep pushing fluids and using antibiotics far more easily than I ever would at Twin Rivers. Thank God we have all of that we need.

The CRNA’s (nurse anesthetists) working with me have kept my patients magnificently pain free with little of our usual 21st century devices. We can’t even monitor oxygen levels appropriately. Bill Ragon who came with us from Jackson, TN “trained in” 2 new arrivals from Knoxville today during surgeries Mike and I were doing. There we are in a OR with screens covering open windows, doing surgery, while Bill quietly gave his replacements (I do believe it will take 2 to replace him) his advice given our resources. By the way, I have not heard a patient crying in pain in the recovery area immediately post-op. The anesthesiologists and nurses running the recovery/post-op areas are just incredible. We keep pushing them to discharge patients so we can bring in more. They have 6-8 patients on cots in small, hot rooms plus patients in the hallways, the laundry room, and every alcove available. They have never said a sour word doing the toughest of jobs.

Speaking of jobs, I really love what I do. My Dad said he enjoyed 20% of what he did in dentistry, and that made up for the other 80%. I have always felt fortunate to enjoy 80% of what I do, more than making up for the other less enjoyable 20%. And come to think of it, at this moment, I don’t know what the 20% I thought I didn’t enjoy is anymore!

The volunteers here are just amazing. Not just the docs and nurses, but everyone. I just met Caleb Pal from Huntsville. Luke, he is the man (I swear he looks 13 and has never shaved) Troy Moore got to come down to hook up the satellite link. I decided his IQ is too high for me to count to. He put a blow up bubble on the roof with the dish inside and is working on a second. He brought a black box smaller than a carry on suitcase that will be a cell tower giving a mile radius for our phones to connect to it. We can then call US through any cell provider one would have just as if in US. He says we are a “cell service provider”. He’s working on how to call in to Jimani right now, next to me here in my dorm room. I am sure he hasn’t had any time to think about why he got into this. I think 99% of volunteers are here because they felt called by God. This is one of our usual discussion topics over power bars and bottled water. I met a young surgeon yesterday on his arrival. He was so arrogant the nurses told me they wouldn’t work with him. But today he was crying along with the rest of us, his eyes the “Jimani red”. And he started asking for advice in the OR, which I guarantee never happened before. And he does great work! He did a “free flap” of skin from the abdomen to a calf wound for one of my 11 year old patients to cover a huge, painful open wound in record time. And within minutes had figured out how to use orthopaedic hardware to fix a 7 year old’s jaw, that was broken in 2 places. So I guess he just didn’t know where the phone call that got him here originated from until today. We are all being changed by our time here, but it was incredible to see this man become so different so fast.

Several of us rode our bus into the town of Jimani tonight. The local hospital looks more like a bus depot to me. 40 people milling around outside, tiny windows, little light. Would not pass for anything medical in the US except a warehouse. We just gawked, speechless. I have truly led a sheltered and charmed life, and assure you all of my pals here feel exactly the same.

So we now have enough orthpaedic surgeons here that I feel comfortable leaving. I had always planned to return 1/23, but with the reservation that I couldn’t if I was needed. Mike Cobb came planning to stay for 2 weeks. We both feel comfortable about going since we have more than enough colleagues to hand off to. The humanitarian crisis may be more apparent on CNN, but so far we all agreed the many (over 100, 58 the last 2 days I think) patients we put external fixators on have to stay here. Where can we send them with pins and bars on their legs? They can’t walk on these and many have both legs injured and can’t even use crutches, which we actually do have. And some need further surgery.

So far we’ve had by one count 500 patients here at one time. We just have no next place to send them, so many will stay and limit the input of more. Clint won’t turn anyone away, he has faith that his pleadings will hit the right ears soon.

Everyone is heading back into the buildings now, but our bus driver, Francisco, is keeping me under protective custody on the bus for a while longer. I don’t think I can get off!

If you look at a map of Haiti and the Dominican Republic, Jimani can be found due east of PAP, just inside the DR. I am told evacuees can’t go south to Jacmel on the coast because the roads are impassable and the same to the west. Most will head east? We all wonder, another topic of usual discussion.

This is disjointed due to several interruptions to check patients in recovery, plan a last minute surgery for someone else to do in AM, try to convince Clint to go to bed (took 3 of us on that one), and calm a young journalist shaken by the jolt we got. Francisco finally allowed me off the bus and we’ll let her sleep there. I actually have a bed tonight for the first time! With a nurse anesthetist waiting to take over in the morning when I leave.

So tomorrow I get back on Chuck Strickland’s jet for our trip back to Knoxville. I have hugely mixed feelings about leaving but I know this was only Phase 1, I can’t imagine not coming back some day, especially since Clint has learned I know how to get here.

Again, thanks for your thoughts and prayers,

Love,
Dad/Ed

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Jimani Update: 1.21.10

Dear all,
8:20 PM
Another day of highs and lows. We had multiple communication breaks today. The patients that need surgery are more stable and less emergent. We have identified quite a few still lying at the orphanage with fractures that need repair. Unfortunately the volunteers fed them breakfast and lunch, so we (OR teams) decided not to do surgery on these and delay until tomorrow. There is less risk of anesthesia complications if one hasn’t had food or drink for 8 hours pre-op. Less likely to vomit and choke when awakening. Given our limited safely equipment, and that the patients seem stable, we chose the lesser
risk of waiting for tomorrow. I had some lined up for surgery tonight but powers that be decided to close the OR’s at 9PM. A group from Boston came in today ready to go, don’t understand the decision process. Overall very frustrating combination of events. Harvard sent a 5 member disaster management team and they are coordinating the overall flow. We do hope to make contact with the Navy tonight and arrange to transfer the sickest to the USS Comfort in PAP. I will believe it when I see the helicopters.

So we did several surgeries today, but had a lot of down time in the OR. This allowed us (the ortho guys) to take stock of the post-op patients and we did find several that need surgery tomorrow. I found Dr. Tom Rivers from Sugarland, TX in his OR down time unloading an ultrasound machine at the orphanage so the OB guys can check out pregnancies. Just one example of so many. And we discovered several patients in need of surgery for lower leg fractures that we didn’t know about. We will have a lot more help tomorrow, but as of now we don’t have nurses to take care of 22 post-ops thru the night. I feel sure that will get covered soon, we expect the Puerto Rican group soon.

I operated on my first patient from 1/19 again today. One month old Amica. She has an aunt here caring for her. Father is definitely dead and Mother unknown. Her pediatrician, Kurt from Omaha, is threatening to take her home to Nebraska. I had to remove burned and dead skin from the top of her forearm. I have an orthopaedic hand surgeon from the Boston group lined up to take over her care for me when I leave (Saturday). I just don’t know if her hand will survive.

Now we have very many people on site, doctors, nurses, EMT’s,lots of people….which requires the bureaucracy to become involved. In the long run it will help. In the short run, we still have over 300 patients here that need a lot of care.

Several new states represented today. We had anesthiologists and OR nurses from New Hampshire and South Dakota arrive with a lot of equipment. Craig Greene from Baton Rouge got in a lot of orthopaedic fixation hardware we needed. We are still short of Xray in order to do more advanced procedures.

From what I hear talking to the folks in the administration end, we are the best functioning facility next to the Navy ships in the area. We had Dominican media in and out last 24 hrs and they agreed. I understand many small places are trying to treat patients inside the Haitian border without any resources. Our biggest problem is where to send the patients as they improve. 30 have been moved down the road to a Church.

We had a man come in today with 40% body burns. He is about 30 and was in his car when the quake hit, a building fell onto his car, and it exploded. I have no idea how he has survived until today, or how he got here. Mike Cobb and 3 general surgeons worked on him for 2 hours. He is our first priority to fly out if the Navy connection works.

Clint has been all over the place today. Trying to get help from the Dominican Republic. Trying to get us Xray stuff. Worrying about little kids here, there and everywhere. Kristine, he did sleep in a bed last night and I promise he will again tonight.
Troy Moore is doing a good job as Clint’s “handler” or as Kelley said, “wrangler”.

I am not much for commercial hype, but that TV ad for AT&T wireless internet is the honest truth, as I have found the internet in Jimani, DR. I enjoy the chance to send out this information and hear back. It is slow, so no pictures until I get home.

Computer battery is going out so guess that’s it for now.

Hey Luke!!! Tech guys with Troy Moore say WIFI will be up any minute. Thanks!!!!! Pictures at 10 o’clock if I can recharge the laptop.

Thanks EVERYONE for the love, prayers and support. I promise I can feel each of you out there,
Love
Dad/Ed

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Jimani Update: 1.20.10, Part 2

Dear Family and Friends, Part 2

It is almost midnight here and seems much quieter. The volunteers here are from everywhere. California, Texas, Nebraska, NY, Louisiana, Tennessee, Brazil, huge group from Puerto Rico who come at night in starched white coats (haven’t asked yet how they manage that), and of course Missouri.

It is heart breaking to see the suffering of these Haitians. We feel about cried out, and then another situation comes up and one can find 4 gray haired orhtopaedic surgeons with tears we can’t control. The Haitians sing together in the night, unbelievable. They want to comfort their hurt. I operated on a 14 weeks pregnant, 20ish woman today and through the haze of medication she was trying to sing. Dr. Mike Cobb (Jackson, TN) and I both were red eyed with that. He believes she was singing a religious song of praise to God.

We usually never know how they come to be here at Jimani. We had a young man come to us at the pre-op area with an X-ray of his grandmother’s hip. She was in a van, if you can call it that. This is the only X-ray I have seen here, and was obtained in a nearby town where he told to bring her here. She has a partial pelvic dislocation. Craig Greene, a trauma specialist from Baton Rouge put our last external fixator on her 2 hours ago. We hope to get more from the Domican Republic tomorrow. The Puerto Rican in charge of their group, a pediatrician, promised to help us get more. Luke, thanks for all your efforts on the procurement and money raising side. I will send you a separate email with special requests.

Turns out the helicopter guys who are helping us try to get Xray equipment are Mormons from Utah. They are flying 6 orphans to Miami tomorrow and have the adopted parents waiting! I am very impressed by the energy of these young men and how fast they make things happen.

It is hot here, like August in Houma. No mosquitoes, thank God. The one real OR room is air conditioned and we’re letting the orthopaedic team from California use it. Don’t know how that happened! The other ortho teams are using dental and exam rooms for OR’s. These are not air conditioned, have screens over open windows and flies at times. Like I told Kit, we are doing battlefield aid station surgeries. At one point today, we had 3 teams putting on external fixators at the same time with doors open in between each room so we can consult with each other, share drills and 2 orthopaedic residents from NY and the one OR nurse. Can’t send the pix because internet connection won’t support that. Luke, that may change when your satellite tech shows up tomorrow and hooks up our dishes. We are all taking pictures, it is the only way folks will ever believe this.

Two babies have been born here in the last 24 hours, one by emergency C-section early today. I can’t imagine what their lives are going to be like.

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Jimani Update: 1.20.10

Dear Family and Friends,

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The wounded keep on coming. I was in the OR all day until 8PM when we ran out of recovery room space, RN’s, and external fixation devices. While operating this AM I heard about the 2nd earthquake from Caroline’s text just as our nurse anesthetist Bill Ragon (Jackson, TN) got a message from his son. Turns out Clint Doiron was in PAP at that time, on the ground, and told me there wasn’t much to feel. Have no idea what this means in terms of more injured.

We are in controlled chaos, but Clint describes PAP as the worst possible of everything. Wounded certainly can’t make it out on their own and roads in city other than the main road are mostly impassable.

Sisters of Mercy came in with a van of multiple injuries. Nuns are teachers and didn’t know what to do for medical services. Clint and I are off to check on their people in a few minutes.

Injuries are 90%+ lower extremities, most with open wounds. We have antibiotics and are giving them freely.

We have clean water, plenty of food and many people who want to help. We have docs doing nursing care, because we have more of us than nurses.

More later,

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Jimani Docs interviewed on PBS

http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/latin_america/jan-june10/haiti2_01-22.html

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

IMPORTANT REQUEST - Drop Off and Current Needs Update

To everyone helping support the Haiti Relief Efforts,

First, thank you for helping the people of Haiti. As you can imagine, North Alabama remains an incredibly generous community. With the outpouring of support, our ability to come by every drop off point that has been established by many volunteers is difficult. We are asking that each of the collection sites bring their donations to one of the primary collection points listed below. This will allow for volunteers to spend their time sorting and packing material for transportation to Haiti.

Our request is that all contributions be taken directly to one of the Primary Collection Points:

UMC Disaster Relief Warehouse
(Location: Decatur, AL - Must follow instructions to get there. Online maps take you to the wrong location.)
Directions:
Take I-565 to I-65 South
Exit 334 West (Priceville) off I-65
Go 3.2 Miles turn left on Highway 31 South
Go 1.0 mile turn left between the Ford dealerships two car lots (Joe Sartain Ford)
Behind Joe Sartain Ford, go past the first warehouse and turn right.
Go around the building and the UMC Disaster Relief Warehouse is in building R.

Phone: (256) 642-1759
Hours for drop off: 9am-4pm CT

Trinity United Methodist Church
607 Airport Road Southwest
Huntsville, AL 35802-1310
(256) 883-3200

Good Shepherd UMC
1418 Old Railroad Bed Rd.
Madison, AL 35757

(256) 232-3331

HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology
601 Genome Way
Huntsville, AL 35806-2908
(256) 327-0400

Medical supplies still remain the highest priority items and through donations and discounted purchasing agreements we are able to fulfill these requests, so your cash contributions help directly in purchasing the physicians’ and nurses’ requests. Trinity United Methodist Church has provided the management of these donations. Please make checks payable to Trinity UMC and mark these donations for Haiti Relief.

These challenging times that the Haitian people face, and the logistics of getting resources into the country are ever changing. Troy Moore and our first flight from Huntsville arrived in country today. The next flights are being lined up currently to get the highest priority items out in the coming days.

You thoughts, prayers and understanding as we get these flights arranged are appreciated. We will continue to update the
http://haitifooddrive.blogspot.com website with our activities. If there is not a post for a few hours, please know that is because we are running as hard as we can to line up these shipments.

Finally, I wanted to specifically state what our current needs are:

Items currently needed:
  1. Medical supplies that are being requested.
  2. Dry food goods – beans, rice and anything that is light and can be reconstituted with water.
Items NOT needed at this time:
  1. Bottled water – water needs are being met through water purification systems (First flight today carried ten of these units).
  2. Canned goods
  3. Clothing

All of the items that have been donated will be shipped, but our collective mission is to focus on what they relief workers need on the ground. These priorities will continue to change over time and we will do our best to keep these request updated. All food shipments are being coordinated through a group that we have had great success with, and enjoyed working with previously, called Food For The Poor,
http://www.foodforthepoor.org.

Sincerely,
Brian and Luke



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Update from Jimani - last night

Dear Family and Friends,

Today found me traveling from Knoxville with friend and fellow grandfather (Kelley’s father-in-law) Clint Doiron to the Dominican Republic town of Jimani near the Haitian border. This is home to Clint’s hospital/medical clinic/orphanage, the Jimani Project. The Chadasha (ancient Hebrew for “new song”) Foundation from Knoxville is the umbrella group over this. We had the gift of a private jet ride in a Sabreliner 65 for those who know what that is. The plane owner from Atlanta, Chuck Strickland, has stayed with us to help. The pilots flew back to Ft. Lauderdale and will return Saturday PM or early Sunday AM. No gas for refueling here. We rode up from the airport in Barahona in a very nice bus, think airport mini-bus, through countryside reminiscent of the leeward side of Hawaiian islands. Kit, reminds me of Waimanalo on Oahu.

Then tough stuff. Arriving here with patients and their families all over the grounds of the clinic and the orphanage which is 200 yards away. The first patient I was asked to see was a 1 month old. The doc on duty was a nephrologist, Ross Isaacs. He carried her himself the 200 yds to the hospital and into the OR. She had a crushed/burned/fractured forearm with blackened finger tips and a hugely swollen hand. A wonderful nurse anesthetist, Tim from Omaha, put her to sleep and I basically opened up her wrist where burn tissue was a tourniquet. We’ll see her in the OR again Thursday. Her mother didn’t survive multiple injuries.

It was then one fractured leg after another. We have 3 other orthopaedic surgeons here. One is professor from hospital for special surgery in NY and brought 2 residents. I helped them thru several procedures and they helped me some more.

Luke, your Dad and I then talked a promise for $125,000 C-arm fluoroscopic x-ray from a young group of guys. They bought 2 helicopters here and are flying in and out of Port-Au-Prince (PAP) for supplies and the occasional wounded. We are still working on how to make that happen fully. We may have a portable X-ray tomorrow. So far, we are going by our judgement since we have no Xray.

A lot of amputations were done here in the last 3 days. The helicopter guys tell us there are wounded in small clinics that have only nurses. Dr. Dave Vanderpool from Nashville is going to PAP tomorrow to survey that more. He’s a vascular surgeon and has been here since Friday.

There are multiple family practice docs, internists, pediatricians, a OB-GYN, all doing pre-op and post-op care. Definitely need more nurses though. Can’t keep up with all the IV’s and med needs.

Kristine, Clint sends his love. We are off to do Midnight rounds.

Love,
Dad/Ed

Clyde, feel free to send this on to all at Twin Rivers..hey you guys thanks for your support!!!

Edmund C. Landry, M.D.
Kennett Orthopaedic Center
402 Recovery Road
Kennett, MO 63857
573-888-2831
573-888-5408 (fax)

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Huntsville Compounding Pharmacy (HCP)

A huge thank you to Huntsville Compounding Pharmacy (HCP)! Last night, HCP dropped off antibiotics, gloves, disposable lab coats and dressings, sterile water for irrigation, and other supplies needed for surgery and treatment of crush injuries.

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Local businessman donates use of plane to take medical supplies, water treatment systems to Haiti

Local businessman donates use of plane to take medical supplies, water treatment systems to Haiti
By Patricia C. McCarter
January 20, 2010, 8:38AM
Michael Mercier
Pilot John Besheres tells passenger Troy Moore where to find a seat in the plane. They are flying medical supplies to the Dominican Republic. The supplies will travel by truck from there to earthquake-ravaged Haiti.
HUNTSVILLE, AL -- A plane that flew out of the Madison County Executive Airport Tuesday morning and headed toward Haiti will deliver equipment to provide 100,000 gallons of clean water a day and a satellite imaging system that will allow local doctors to treat earthquake victims from afar.

And it's all being done by volunteers and benefactors who, quite simply, hurt at the thought of all the hurting going on in Haiti.

"I'm honored to help," said biotechnology entrepreneur Troy Moore shortly before he boarded the Pilatus PC12 Tuesday. "I just talked to guys on the other end, and we're good to go."

Fuel and use of the plane was donated by Huntsville businessman Alan Jenkins, who owns a third of the Pilatus. He got drawn into the relief effort by an e-mail plea sent out by the National Business Aviation Association.

"This is our maiden voyage in this capacity," Jenkins said. "Our hope is to do this again and again, as long as help is needed. Right now I was wishing the plane was 10 times bigger so that we could send 10 times as much stuff."

Initially, Jenkins believed he'd be loaning his plane to a crew from Doctors Without Borders or other nationally known relief groups. But because his plane was undergoing scheduled maintenance on Tuesday, those agencies traveled by other means.

Then CitiHope, a Haitian charity, contacted him and asked if he'd bring down some medical equipment and supplies collected in - of all places - Huntsville.

A collaboration of local professionals - many who own or run companies located in the HudsonAlpha Institute for Biotechnology - have worked for years to ease the plight of Haitians. Luke Doiron, along with Marshall Schreeder Jr., founded Conversant Healthcare Systems three years ago.

Dorion's father, a cardiologist in Knoxville, has performed countless hours of work with the Jimani Project, which is in the Dominican Republic about seven miles from the border with Haiti. He's brought his son with him there for numerous medical mission trips, as well as other troubled spots around the world.

"Our group supports 20 orphanages in Haiti, and at least half of them have collapsed," Doiron said.

Side by side, they've helped build the Bon Samaritan Hospital and orphanage in the Dominican village of Jimani. When they learned that the U.S. government had transported more than 100 doctors to the hospital to tend to Haitians injured in last week's devastating earthquake, they knew they had to go.

Dr. Clint Doiron is in Haiti now, performing operations on the victims.

Officials estimate 200,000 have been killed, and that number is sure to rise if medical help isn't delivered soon.

Some of the supplies on the plane include 10 water purifying systems, donated by Servants in Faith and Technology out of Lineville, and each of those systems can sanitize 10,000 gallons of water a day.

A Cisco TelePresence imaging system being sent over will allow doctors and radiologists in Huntsville to read X-rays and "visit" with Haitian patients and then recommend treatment.

Also, boxes of braces, scalpels, IV medications and splints were part of the cargo. Though plenty of volunteers would have been happy to go on the trip, only two pilots and Moore were on the plane. The rest of the space was used for equipment. Others hope to make the trip in coming weeks.

On future trips, the volunteers want to bring food - dried beans, rice, powdered milk - with them. Donations can be dropped off at HudsonAlpha at 6900 Moquin Drive in Cummings Research Park.

Donations made to Trinity United Methodist Church on Airport Drive, Good Shepherd United Methodist Church in Madison and Madison Academy will be passed along to the group.

The progress of the group can be tracked at haitifooddrive.blogspot.com

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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

UPDATE: From our Jimani clinic

The next team has arrived in Jimani!!!
Terry Douglass just let us know that he and Drs. Neal Barry, Clint Doiron, Mike Cobb, Bill Ragon, Ed Landry, and John Williamson landed in Barahona, DR and have made the trip to Jimani. Chuck Sutherland is also with the team and has provided the plane. They are about to jump in to the 150 surgeries that await them.

Troy Moore is in the air now on his way right with a plane full of supplies for both Jimani and Harvest Field Ministries.

stay tuned for more updates...

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Monday, January 18, 2010

Update from Harvest Field Ministries

Just received this from Brian at midnight, January 18th. Again, please be aware that some of the content is graphic, but these are Brian's experiences.


Wow...Where to begin...last couple of days have been filled with heartache, death, and sadness but also scattered with pockets of joy and hope.

Yesterday (Saturday)...checked on a couple more places in pap and saw more horror. Had to drive through the political district where the White House, courts, and govt buildings are and much of this area is flattened. Filled with thousands of refugees living in tent cities (not real tents; just sheets and table cloths stretched over a couple sticks). Unbelievable how many bodies still on the street and sidewalk in this area. Piles of bodies stacked five feet high. Some of them naked where people had stolen the clothes off the corpses. Unimaginable horrors.

We were low on gas and all the stations are closed, destroyed, out of gas, or a 3-4 hr wait. We had to buy some from guys along the side of the road and it cost me almost $200 to fill up our forerunner.

Driving through Carrefour more of the same destruction. Many, many buildings collapsed. Corpses laying in the median of the road. A lot more tent cities and refugees no longer with homes.

Stopped at Merje to see our church and school there... a complete loss too. The pastor explained that they had a special service planned to start just before the quake hit, but at the last minute they had to cancel. Praise the Lord because if he had not canceled it there would have been over 125 people in the building when the quake hit.

Next stopped in downtown Leogande to check on an acquaintance working out of St Croix hospital. The hospital was still standing and appeared to have no damage. But downtown Leogande was completely leveled. The 2 or 3 blocks surrounding St Croix is rubble. Talked to some people there and they said they were expecting American medical teams soon but the entire place was empty when I was there. (Jonathan I checked on Kara with the nutritional program but they said she was in the states).

After Leogande, we began our climb up the mountain road. This is the only road to get to Belloc, Coq Chante, and Camatin where we have churches, schools, and an orphanage. We could only make it about 15 minutes before we encountered the first rock slide that covered the road, making it impossible to pass by car or truck. Me and Hippolite loaded as much bottled water as we could carry and climbed on a motorcycle taxi (yes all 3 of us on one motorcycle). The road was blocked in at least 5 places where rock slides or retaining wall collapses exist. I expect it will be months before cars can pass on this road again. Several places we had to get off and walk and let the moto driver go by himself because driving over the rock/dirt slides was so treacherous. Several of the rock slides had "Haitian toll booths" - where the path to pass was only a few feet wide, guys standing there with machetes and had a tree branch blocking the path and they don't remove it unless you pay their toll. As you can imagine the toll for the white guy is much more expensive.

We finally made it to Belloc. As we had been told, both the orphanage building (no kids were in there) and the church/school building are a complete loss. The small home between the buildings where one of the deacons of the church lives, was crushed and their 7 yr old daughter was killed. It took them 3 days with many men in the community digging through rubble to find her tiny body. They were digging the hole to bury her when I arrived. Pastor Beauillere and his family escaped unhurt.

Get ready for this...immediately after the quake Pastor Beaulliere went to the field across from the church and started preaching. People just started showing up to listen and 21 people accepted Christ!!! When I arrived yesterday he was carrying buckets of water to fill up a neighbor's cistern so they could baptize all 21 of them.

Next made our way to Coq Chante to the orphanage. What a horror to see the building in pieces. Basically the front part of the building was sheared off from the back part of the building which is still standing but major cracks everywhere and appears very unstable. You can see directly into 2 of the girls bedrooms...scattered baby dolls, school uniforms, and beds all strewn about and visible from the ground outside.

After several minutes of hugs and kisses and crying, they took me and showed me where our precious Atanie had been struck and killed. They wept as they explained to me that she had actually made it out of the building safely but in the confusion they think she went back towards the front door to look for someone or something, and that is when the entire front of the building sheared off and came down. She was immediately with Jesus.

The girls were totally out of water because the cisterns broke and all the water ran out. They'd been drinking shadack (like a grapefruit) juice for 3 days. They were sleeping on the back of our flatbed truck with the caretakers sleeping on the ground around the truck. We planned to do the same again but at about 6:00 as it was getting dark it started pouring the rain. There was an empty "house" near the orphanage (a 10' x 12' shack with wooden slats for walls and a rusty tin roof speckled with holes). I don't know whose house it is but I made an executive decision and moved the girls and one caretaker into this shack and they slept on the floor. Not great but somewhat dry. Their resiliency amazes me - they were still full of joy and sang songs and giggled and braided each others hair for several hours before they went to sleep. It's as if they thought it was just a fun slumber party. They find joy even in the most desperate situations - I have so much to learn from them.


This morning (Sunday) we got up and had church. Lots of singing hymns and praise songs, reading several psalms, and we talked about what scripture says the church is - people; not a building. This hits home when your building is in pieces 10' behind where you are standing.
After that we drove to Jacmel because we had received word a plane was coming in with some supplies for us. Driving through Jacmel is pretty bad, several big buildings down, most stores closed, some streets blocked, but in my opinion not as hard hit as pap (at least not the part of Jacmel we drove through). We were almost out of gas in the truck, but we couldn't get the truck anywhere near the station because of the approx 150 people already in line. We left Hippolite with a small gas can and a couple of 5 gallon buckets and he risked life and limb to battle the chaos of getting us enough gas for a couple days. Next we went to the airport (it's just a runway with a small building next to it). The UN had a few troops there but were not overseeing the coming and going of planes. There were a couple of guys there who have orphanages and feeding programs in Jacmel and the mayor of Jacmel had put them in charge. Was a little like herding cats, but ultimately we received our shipment marked for us which was 3 backpacks, 1 with rice and 2 filled with bottles of water.

We were ready to leave but a UN truck had us blocked so I started talking to some guy and it turned out to be Mark Stuart, the lead singer of the Christian band Audio Adrenaline. They have a orphanage in Jacmel called The Hands and Feet Project. Mark shared with me how the quake had not damaged their facility but people had still sent them several loads of supplies so he offered me some of their extra. We drove to their place a few minutes from the airport and loaded up 8 boxes of bottled water, a couple boxes of fortified rice, and several boxes of formula! God is so good and I'm so unbelievably appreciative of kingdom minded people like this.

After that we spent some more time driving through Jacmel looking for tarps so we could make tents if it rains again but no luck. Most stores are closed or sold out of everything. Bought a few vegetables at the public market and the prices were already triple the normal price. This will just get worse in coming days/weeks because everything in Jacmel has to come via trucks from pap and the (only) road in is covered by all the rock/dirt slides.

Next went to Camatin to assess damage. The building is all still standing except the back cisterns (3 stories high) have partially collapsed and are leaning against the building. The rest of the building has a few cracks in the walls but appears okay. I just don't know how to make the decision if it is safe to inhabit or not so for now we are keeping everyone out. If anyone knows a structural engineer that wants to come to Haiti and check it out for safety and give their opinion/recommendations then email swarwick@tds.net.

Spent some time talking, praying, and crying with Pastor Moises the pastor at Camatin. His brother died in the quake when his small concrete home collapsed on him. They buried him Thursday. It was about 6:00 pm when we went by so Pastor Moises was doing what he always does on Sunday evenings - he was having a church service. They were worshiping outside.


Returned back to Coq Chante and boy were the orphans happy to see the water. I think they were getting tired of only drinking grapefruit juice. I think we have enough water now to last us about about 4 days.

Sleeping arrangements are same as last night but no tarp is needed. Thank you Lord for no rain.

For tomorrow...praying phone/email signal works better so I can have good conversations with all the awesome people working so hard to get supplies and teams mobilized. Will probably go to the airport again and pray some blankets and tarps come in that no other ministries have claimed. Also want to talk with a guy who has an empty building (used to be a store to sell rice, beans, cooking oil, etc but it sits empty now) that is near the orphanage and appears to have no damage from the outside, but I haven't seen the inside.

Almost midnight and tomorrow looks to be another long day. I'll leave you with a psalm that a sweet lady in Indiana emailed me a couple days ago and I've reread it several times to get strength whenever I felt like just curling up in a fetal position and hiding.
Please keep praying,
Brian


Psalm 16

Preserve me, O God, for I take refuge in You. I said to the Lord, "You are my Lord; I have no good besides You." As for the saints who are in the earth, They are the majestic ones in whom is all my delight. The sorrows of those who have bartered for another god will be multiplied; I shall not pour out their drink offerings of blood, Nor will I take their names upon my lips. The Lord is the portion of my inheritance and my cup; You support my lot. The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places; indeed, my heritage is beautiful to me. I will bless the Lord who has counseled me; Indeed, my mind instructs me in the night. I have set the Lord continually before me; Because He is at my right hand, and I will not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad and my glory rejoices; my flesh also will dwell securely. For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; Nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay. You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Update from Harvest Field Ministries

Some Good News from Brian in Coq Chante!
This shows how incredibly strong the Haitian people are!

video

I received this e-mail from Brian this morning before church. I cannot tell you how good it was to know that we were all worshiping such and great God together even if we're hundreds of miles away.

Although the girls are doing well and everyone seems to be okay, the situation is very dangerous. There is not much food and even less water. Supplies to the area are needed desperately. I would love to go and buy cases and cases of water to send, but getting it there is near impossible. Please pray that logistics are worked out to get some supplies in. Continue to pray for that hedge of protection around Brian and all that are with him. Pray that God shower them with an abundance of peace and even more hope.

Thank you all for all the messages of support. We are feeling the love! Keep it coming!

Anyone who would like to know more about Harvest Field Ministries visit www.harvestfieldhaiti.org.

Got here about 2 hrs ago. Digicell not working. And my iPhone was out of charge but...u ready fir this? The solar panels still work at Coq Chante. So I could charge my phone!
All girls are good. Odette and her parents actually walked the whole way from City of God (in Port au Prince) to Coq Chante. Left Tuesday night and got home Wednesday afternoon. She is staying with her parents. Jayla and Christianie and Madestine are staying with their parents too, but they came by to visit and looked well.

All the rest are being themselves acting silly and playing and giving each other a hard time. They are reading books and singing. Islande is sick with a headache and fever, but not too bad, she is still playing some.

I e-mailed the earlier photos Coq Chante because I just can't explain the damage. The majority of Coq Chante is still standing but it will have to come all the way down and start all over because not safe. The kitchen is okay but that's it. No one would go inside so they had nothing except what they were wearing. Me and Jean Luc went in and quickly got a few of the hospital mattresses a bunch of sheets and blankets and a couple armfuls of clothes. The store building next door seems okay and they'll go in it during day but won't sleep in it because they are scared. Even the people living in shacks are sleeping outside because they are afraid and there are STILL aftershocks, even just a few minutes ago. It feels like your on a cruise ship. I can't fathom what the real thing was like.


Agathe is holding up well. She is a strong woman. If she wasn't here I think we would have lost many more than Atanie. She said she got everyone out fast but Marie Michille, Saintemon (we know her as Ya-Ya), Merline, and Christianie were still in the kitchen standing at the doorway at the top of stairs screaming. Agathe said "the whole house was jumping up and down and knocking them down". She said she screamed "please God make it stop" and it immediatel

y did, she got them down the stairs, then it started again for about another 20 seconds. That is the time when the front of the building collapsed. Agathe was screaming for them all to get away and she started counting and couldn't find Atanie and all the others immediately started looking and they found her right where the front door would be. Agathe saw her come down so she says she must have gotten confused or thinks she went back for something maybe. They buried her the next day... and now she is with Jesus.

If we can't get the girls out somewhere else, then first order is to get a huge tent, like a revival tent. And we need more hospital mattresses. And lots of tarps. I'm still praying the building at Camatin isn't as bad as they say. We'll see.

Wousami is good but didn't see them. His grandmother was hit by a block so they took her to a Dr. somewhere but Beualljere said they were all fine and the house looked fime no damage except maybe some damage to the slab.

We brought enough water for a day or 2 when we walked into Coq Chante. They have been drinking lots of strait shaddock juice so they are all happy about that (kind of like when you are out of milk so you let the kids drink coke). The cisterns are all empty. Tomorrow after church well go to Camatin and Jacmel and survey things there.

The road from Leogande is a nightmare. Forget coming in that way by truck for at least 3 months. Major, major rock and dirt slides. It was bad. Lots of people buried in it. The only way in will probably be Jacmel. I'll let you know tomorrow afternoon what the road is like once I've traveled it and surveyed Jacmel.

.....Okay, sorry had to take an hour break as I was typing it started pouring rain. Original plan was for the kids to sleep in the back of the truck and adults around the outside of the truck. When it started raining I tried to get them all in the building next door and they ALL looked at me like I was crazy. With what they experienced, it's understandable they don't want to sleep in a building made of concrete. I asked if the lady next door was home and they said she Port au Prince so I said "good, we'll sleep there. They're not afraid of shacks; only scared of concrete buildings, walls, and mausoleums. So now all the girls and Gaspards are sleep in that shack. They are happy and laughing. They act like it's a slumber party. Me, Lozama, Hippolite, Jean Luc, and Alfred are in the back of the truck; it is cozy and we all stink and it is raining. Agathe is in front of the truck. Edwing is sleeping at at some old ladies house nearby.

I'm spent so I'm going to sleep now. It's only 7:30 but I feel like it's midnight. Not much sleep last few nights. Plus, I have to wake early to prepare to preach. I asked Pastor Gaspard what time church started and he looked at me like I was crazy and said "you want to have church?" And I told him "Heck, yeah, I want to have church."

Later
Brian

96 PR health workers to aid Haitian quake victims

http://www.prdailysun.com/index.php?page=news.article&id=1263614304

Some 96 doctors, nurses and University of Puerto Rico medical students left for the Dominican Republic Friday to set up a camp next to a hospital in Jimani, a town on the border with Haiti, to provide medical care to thousands of Haitians injured in the earthquake that devastated the country earlier this week, Senate President Thomas Rivera Schatz said Friday.
The effort was coordinated by Rivera Schatz and Dominican Republic authorities and the site was chosen because of the difficulties entering chaotic Port-au-Prince. Rivera Schatz said the hospital in Jimaní is a 45-minute drive from the Haitian capital and that the facility has been swamped by injured victims since the earthquake. The doctors brought medical supplies and medications donated by local companies.
The health professionals, including three native Haitians, will be in the Dominican Republic until Tuesday, when they will be replaced by a contingent of 30 doctors who have volunteered to support the Senate’s aid efforts. This second group will include three island mayors who are doctors. They are Ponce Mayor María “Mayita” Melèndez, who is a dentist and will work trying to identify bodies, Salinas Mayor Carlos Rodríguez Mateo and Aguada Mayor Luis Alberto Echevarría.
Rivera Schatz said he and a group of senators will also be visiting Haiti next week to deliver supplies. The Senate has set up a collection center in front of the Capitol to deliver food, clothing and medicine to Haitians and the House has set up collection centers in all district offices. The goods will be delivered in coordination with the U.S. Southern Command since the government in Haiti has effectively broken down.
“The [Haitian] president [Rene Preval] does not have a home, and he is working from the Dominican Republic,” Rivera Schatz said at a news conference in the Capitol.
Rivera Schatz said the doctors will have translators to help them out. He said Max Antoine, the executive director of the Border Development Authority in Haiti, will serve as liaison with the Haitian government. Ricardo Jacobo, executive director of the Dominican Government Institute, will be helping doctors and the Dominican Senate president.
The Dominican airline PAWA agreed to transport the doctors free of charge. Fred Sosa, PAWA manager, said the Haitians desperately need humanitarian aid, especially doctors.
“Besides their services, the health experts will take with them all of the surgical materials and instruments donated by Johnson and Johnson, UMECO, Glaxo, the Health Department and the Dr. Center Hospital,” said Rivera Schatz, who was accompanied by first lady Lucé Vela.
“This is a time when we have grown as a people,” Vela said.
Rivera Schatz said that Transporte Sonnell, Reliable, Agua de la Montana, Campo Fresco, Copa Airlines, Margaritas Restaurant, the Ports Authority and Ferries del Caribe also contributed to the effort. Ferries del Caribe will transport two ambulances donated to the Haitian government and Copa Airlines has agreed to provide transportation.
The Senate leader said his counterpart in Haiti, Kelly Bastien, is very ill and is undergoing medical care in the Dominican Republic. “The Haitian government has collapsed. This could happen here. We live in a seismic area,” he said.
Although Rivera Schatz called for unity, he did not invite the Popular Democratic Party minority delegation to the activity. PDP Sen. Alejandro García Padilla said the Senate leader did ask for their help in the effort “but we really do not mind if we were not there. The important thing is to help out.”

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