|Jill Danburg-Knudsen, O.T. with a young girl.|
We want to address the political situation in Haiti before we delve into the report from our orphanage teams.
Haiti has been in the news recently because of the unrest aimed at President Aristide. Two days ago 42 people were killed in a cities approximately two hours from Port Au Prince. The resistance is trying to overthrow the government for many reasons but mainly because of a feeling that the living conditions have not improved since President Aristide took over. We would encourage those that are interested in this to please explore the history leading up to the current situation.
We as a team are having frequent discussions about our safety
and wellbeing. We have not had any problems and hope that we
continue to feel this way. It has affected the patients and the
Haitian technicians being able to come to the clinic.
Tonight we would like to focus on the two orphanages that some
of our team members are visiting each day.
|Sarah Gutknecht, Nurse Practitioner and children.|
Two or three team members go to an orphanage each day to assess, treat, educate the children and fit and repair equipment as needed. The Wings of Hope orphanage is located on one side of Port Au Prince and Mercy and Sharing orphanage is located on the other.
Imagine your work day beginning with the joyous greeting of beautiful Haitian children with bright eyes and smiles. Some of the child gather around immediately for hugs as we arrived. The children that we work with are some of the 1 million living in orphanages, out of the six million children in Haiti.
Many of the orphanages are run by church groups, foundations, or private business groups. Families that have a child with a disability often can not keep The child in the home. In many cases children live in an orphanage because the parents are struggling to provide for the family or may have died due illness or injuries.
There is limited health care for families in Haiti.
With the work of our team and the donations from families and
community we provide additional support to the orphanages through
education, materials and equipment, and our technical skills.
Today at Wings of Hope and Mercy and Sharing we focused on
working with the rehab technicians, Ashton Carlene and the
orphanage staff. The rehabs techs were trained through the Healing
Hands Rehab Tech Training program.
We worked directly with children and visiting Americans to
assist the children in walking, stretching and eating. We modified
orthotics, wheel chairs, and positioning equipment such as
Tomorrow we will continue to work with children who have not
walked in the past, adapt and modify equipment and most of all
enjoy the time we spend working with the wonderful and caring staff
at the orphanage with such special children.
I hope this has given you a small glimpse into the workings of
our orphanage teams.
We continued to work at the Kay Kapab rehabilitation clinic
today. All reports indicate that O & P fabrication went very
smoothly with many patients receiving their first prosthesis today.
Physical and Occupational therapy continued to be the busiest part
of the clinic. Three therapist treated thirty patients in about six
hours. Our nurse practitioner diagnosed, prescribed, educated
patients and assisted the Haitian nursing staff in the
We will try to attach several photos of our team members working
with people at the orphanages and the Kay Kapab clinic.
Joan Purrington, PT
Kristin Johnson, PT
Al Ingersoll, CP
Minnesota Team Healing Hands for Haiti