Google+ WTN Haiti Partnership: March 2010

Friday, March 26, 2010

Photojournalism Article on Haiti by Boston Globe

For an incredible photo journal of scenes from Haiti since the earthquake, go to:  http://www.boston.com/bigpicture/2010/03/haiti_70_days_later.html

It is a story in the Boston Globe.  Get your Kleenex ready.
Susan Nelson

Thursday, March 25, 2010

West Tennessee Haiti Partnership Upcoming Trip to Haiti

We are planning another trip to Haiti April 24 - May 1.  Our team will consist of Dr. Susan Nelson, Deacon Drew Woodruff, John Mutin, Amy Bonk-Chanin, and Allie Russos, all veterans from our December 2009 trip.  Debbie Hooser may join us as well.  Debbie has been to Montrouis several times and will be a valuable addition to our medical team.  We are looking for someone to run our pharmacy.  This person must be familiar with medications; any knowledge of French is a plus! Kellar McCloy ran our pharmacy in December, but he is studying for boards in medical school and unable to join us this time.  We will also have Margaret McLaughlin with us.  She has not been to Haiti before but has worked for the peace corps for many years and has worked in the Sudan.  She has experience working with teachers in disaster/crisis situations and hopes to work with the teachers at St. Vincent's school.

Susan Nelson spoke with Dr. Diane Petrilla this week after her trip to Montrouis in March with 25 University students from Sewanee.  Dr. Petrilla ran a medical clinic in Montrouis and also toured the destruction in Port au Prince.  She reported that the team was able to sleep in beds inside the dormitories at St. Paul's compound in Montrouis, that the electricity was intermittent and there was a "drizzle of water" in the showers.  She enjoyed swimming in the ocean!  The kids from St. Vincent's were sleeping in tents since they are still afraid to be inside any buildings.  We will see how the rainy season affects their willingness to continue sleeping outside.

On previous trips we bought many medicines from Haitian pharmacies in Port au Prince.  However, since we are unsure if any pharmacies are operational now, we plan to take all our medical supplies with us.  We also hope to take clothing for the kids, toothpaste, toothbrushes, soap, and school supplies if space permits.

We ask your prayers for the safe travel of our team and our supplies and that we will be a blessing to our Haitian friends rather than a burden.
Susan Nelson

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Now You Can Translate This Page

I have installed a new Google gadget to enable translation of this entire page in one step. Simply go to the Google Translator on the top right of any page and select the language you would like to read the blog in. The page will reload with Google's translation.  Be aware, the translation is not perfect and may contain errors, but it should enable the page to be read by a wider audience. Or you can try it out for fun and test your language skills! The translator currently works for French, Haitian Creole, and Spanish. If you would like me to add any other languages, please leave a comment.
Enjoy!
Jwi!
Amusez-vous bien!
¡Divertirse!
Stephen Nelson
p.s. sorry if those translations aren't so good.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Photo Montage from Villa Manreze in Jacmel, Haiti

These are images from Jacmel sent to us by Mr. Albert Jean Louis, a teacher at Ridgeway High School, who is teaching Kreyol to several members of the Partnership.They display the buildings before the earthquake and afterwards. There just over 30 images, and some of them are dsiturbing. The last few pictures are of residents and staff who were lost in the disaster. The montage was created by Jeannot Grenon & Pierrette Coulombe on January 18 2010 and includes captions, which I have not translated. You can input individual captions for a decent translation at translate.google.com. You can also follow this link to see the entire page translated.
Villa Manrèse, Maison internationale pour l'accueil des missionnaires, des coopérants et ONG pour le développement social et spirituel des haïtiens. N’EST PLUS.
Villa Manrèse offrait à prix modique toutes les commodités essentielles au repos et au ressourcement pour les retraites et les rencontres de formations.
Villa Manrèse dans toute sa splendeur conservait une sobriété et une propreté inspirante!
Villa Manrèse n'offrait pas de luxe...  que de la Beauté naturelle!
Sise en flanc de montagne, Villa Manrèse offrait une vue magnifique sur Port-au-Prince.
Villa Manrèse n'avait pas d'air climatisé, on pouvait aussi manquer d'eau...
Magie du soir sur la Villa Manrèse
La fenêtre derrière nous est la réception où travaillait Deslourdes qui est maintenant sous les décombres.  L'étage où nous sommes là, posés,  est complètement disparu.
Un des balcons des chambres de la Villa qui pouvait accueillir 100 personnes à coucher.
Coin repos, lecture.
Coin repos des résidents
Pierrette à son bureau (deuxième étage) au travail jusqu'en avril 2006.
Jeannot  prend bien soin de son bougainvillier.
Villa Manrèse a accueilli de nombreux parents dans le cadre de l'adoption internationale.
Comité des Soeurs de Ste-Thérèse avec Sr Marie-Claire Dupont en réunion sur un balcon.
Entrée principale, avant et après le séisme.
Vue arrière, voyez...le premier étage est disparu.
Vue arrière...
3 Haïtiennes chanceuses, elles ont quitté la buanderie à 16 hre.
 À 17 hre, le séisme écrase toute cette partie de la Villa.
Le jardin de la Villa devient un centre d'ébergement après le séisme.
Cathédrale de Port-au-Prince (avant et après)
Notre amie, missionnaire française, décédée au travail dans la salle St-Viateur au premier étage.
Notre amie Aséfi, cuisinière, décédée au travail dans la cuisine au premier étage.

Annette est décédée à son travail à la cuisine ainsi que Deslourdes, à  la réception mais nous n'avons pas de photo de cette dernière.
Mme Marie-Michelle, retirée des décombres à la cuisine, blessée.
Eslem, employé de la Villa, blessé lors du séisme.
Port-au-Prince ne sera jamais plus la même… !
Stephen Nelson

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Eliminated Website Bug

I apologize to anyone who was recently unable to visit the website. Part of the html code was malfunctioning or had been hijacked and I was forcibly redirecting browsers to a spam website. Because of this I was forced to remove the CNN update gadget, and the problem has been solved. If anyone used the CNN gadget frequently or feels it still belongs on the blog, I can input another copy of it. Please leave any comments on this post.

Thanks,
Stephen Nelson 

Letter from Bill Squire After Recent Trip to Haiti

Haiti Trip Report
February 24 – March 1, 2010

I know that we are all being inundated with information about Haiti. Yet, I feel compelled to communicate to the members of the Board of Directors of CMMH (and a few others) information gleaned from my recent trip to the Diocese of Haiti. Margaret joined me on this venture and again we had to go through the Dominican Republic. I won’t bore you with the details of our trip; suffice it to say that we were successful in getting in and out of Haiti through the DR without incident (Margaret might not totally agree with that last statement!).

The children who remain under the care of Father Sadoni are being well cared for on the old seminary campus in Montrouis. We visited with them (that is where we slept for our time in Haiti) and found them in good spirits; they have a prayer meeting every night under the stars, and a service of Holy Eucharist each Sunday afternoon. They of course want to be “home,” but are doing fine. There are ten members of the staff with the children, and Father Sadoni is planning on transporting a few teachers there each day to begin some school activities. I don’t know when he will begin to do that; but I am hopeful that it can be soon.

I met with Bishop Duracin and discussed St. Vincent’s at length. The Bishop asked that I coordinate the relief effort for St. Vincent’s working toward reconstruction of the facility. He has decided that in his global plan for reconstruction of the institutions of the Episcopal Diocese of Haiti that he will appoint a person (or a group of persons) to coordinate all those persons or entities interested in or involved with a particular institution. I will be that person for St. Vincent’s. St. Vincent’s will be reconstructed on its present sites (main campus, boy’s foyer). Some institutions of the Diocese may be relocated out of Port-au-Prince, but St. Vincent’s will not be one of them. The primary reason for this is that the majority of the children who attend school at St. Vincent’s are handicapped children who live at home and commute to the present location. To move the institution out of the capitol city would preclude those children from attending school. Also, the medical clinic treats children from Port-au-Prince, and the same principle applies. So, the buildings will be reconstructed on site. Bishop Duracin plans to have a group of engineers, both Haitian and American, assist in the effort of reconstruction of the facilities of the Diocese. Engineer assessments have already begun.

The debris in front of the main campus has been cleared and there is now access to the facility. Since the earthquake, looting has occurred and at St. Vincent’s everything left behind has been lost to thieves. Not only have those things not “tied down” been taken, but things such as window air conditioners, toilets, and yes, even the kitchen sink were stolen! Also gone are four new computers, the refrigerator in the guest area, all the musical instruments (except four guitars and the bells) as well as all mattresses and beds. You get the picture!

At this time, the initial engineer assessment indicates the following. The building housing the medical clinic has been totally destroyed. The building housing the brace shop, dental office, eye clinic, the director’s office, several classrooms, and the guest area will remain (with some work to be done on it). Already put in place are braces (floor to ceiling) in the brace shop because the outside wall will have to be repaired and the braces will keep the second floor in place. The top two floors of the building housing three floors of classrooms and the guest/staff eating area with kitchen will be taken down. It is felt that the ground floor will remain (how they take the top two floors off and keep the bottom floor in tact is beyond me!); yet that is the plan at this time, knowing that an additional assessment will be made after the top two floors are destroyed. The building that has depots and offices are the ground floor and the girl’s dormitory on the second floor will have to come down. The building behind that one (surgical suite, old music room, etc.) was damaged but survived and will stay.

At the Boy’s Foyer the building fronting the street is almost totally destroyed and the rest will have to come down. The main dormitory building is considered salvageable. The plan is to build a temporary structure at this location to begin school and a medical clinic. The offices adjacent to the Foyer belong to the Episcopal Church but have been leased to another organization for some time. Those offices have been reclaimed and are about to become temporary offices for Father Sadoni and his staff. I purchased a new laptop to be used by his secretary, and a new printer to be used by him and the staff.

Now, briefly, let me turn to Hospital St. Croix. We visited there and found temporary clinics at several locations on the campus. Doctors without Borders seemed to be in charge, although it was difficult to determine if any coordination was being done between them and Haitian medical personnel. The Church is still standing, but will be destroyed. Father Delicat told me that they are having services on the basketball court, with 450 in attendance. The school and the outdoor bandstand were both destroyed. The Director’s house and the hospital itself were severely damaged. The guest houses (one small house and a two story building) are totally gone. That is to say, they have been removed from the grounds – standing in front of them looking where they had been you are now looking right out to the street. The reconstruction of these facilities will be the responsibility of the Rev. John Talbird and the Hospital Board of Governor’s. I do not know the specific plans for reconstruction of this area.

That concludes my report. I am glad to talk to anyone about this in more detail if you want to call me (although I am unsure if I know anymore than what I have written here). The above information is based on initial assessments and obviously may change. In any case, we have a large task ahead of us. We have had considerable activity in fund raising and Ken has been very busy with receiving and acknowledging donations, answering inquiries, and communicating with people interested in St. Vincent’s. That list has grown considerably! I pray this finds you all in good health and I look forward to our continued ministry on behalf of the children of St. Vincent’s. May God continue to bless your lives and your ministry.

Bill Squire, director, Children's Medical Mission of Haiti

Letter from Bishop Duracin of Haiti

ÉGLISE ÉPISCOPALE D’HAITI 
COMMUNION ANGLICANE 
86, Rue Rigaud Pétion-Ville, Haïti
Boite Postale 1309

MGR JEAN ZACHE DURACIN                                                                   BUREAU DIOCESAIN
            Evêque d’Haïti                                                                                      Pétion-ville
        Tél. : 257-8116

  
‘The earthquake has not destroyed our hope in the future’

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:
Seven weeks after we were hit by the 7.0 earthquake on the Richter scale, the situation is still very serious in Haiti.
As you know, many people were killed, perhaps as many as 300,000. Thousands and thousands of others have been injured. In the Church, we have lost many people. Millions of Haitians have no place to live; many are sleeping in the streets in tents, and some of them still have not found any shelter at all. All the infrastructure of the country, as well as all the key institutions of the Diocese, have been destroyed, especially in the capital of Port au Prince. The situation is very difficult.
Many of our famous churches are gone, especially Holy Trinity Cathedral, which was not only a place of worship, but a place of culture. The Cathedral was a very important institution for the whole country. Yes, it has been physically destroyed, but our faith is still here and our communities are still alive. The earthquake has not destroyed our hope in the future. Despite the difficulties we face, many of our parishes have grown larger since the earthquake, because more and more people trust our Church and are turning to us for help spiritually, socially and morally.
We are still a strong Church and we will continue to work with you in partnership to be able to build up the Kingdom of God on earth through evangelism, education, health care and our development programs. We will work together to preach a holistic Gospel so that human beings may become more fully human in the face of God.
We will have to rebuild all of our communities. We in the Diocese are working very hard to have a Master Plan to replace the physical structures of the Church, so that we may continue to serve Haitian people with the same love, the same care, and the same support that we have always shown. Our mission will not change. We pray that God will continue to give us strength to do all this work despite so many difficulties. We ask you to please be patient and wait for our guidance as we put together this plan so that we can determine how our resources can be used most effectively. Once we have made our decisions, we will announce the plan. To assist us in using all of our resources in the best possible way, and to provide the best accounting of donations, I ask all of our partners in traditional programs to resume sending donations through the Partnership Program. The fastest and safest way to do this is by wiring the money into the Partnership Program account; the Rev. Kesner Ajax, Partnership Program Coordinator, can provide that information to any who require it.
I am grateful for all of the support and assistance of The Church Center and especially of the Presiding Bishop and Primate, The Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori. Her visit to us in February, even though it was short, gave us great strength here in Haiti, and I am deeply thankful for our time together. We appreciate very much the willingness of The Church Center to continue to work with us in the Master Plan to rebuild the Diocese.
In addition, I give thanks for the visit of The Rt. Rev. Pierre Whalon, Bishop Suffragan of the Convocation of Episcopal Churches in Europe, who is visiting right now on the Presiding Bishop’s behalf.  I also give thanks to all of the bishops  and dioceses of The Episcopal Church for their prayers and support, and for telling our story. Some of them have been directly involved in supporting me and my wife, Edithe, during our difficult time; all of our family is especially thankful for this.
Special thanks must be given to Episcopal Relief and Development; all of us are grateful for its assistance and work in providing us food, shelter, water, medicines and all other forms of support to help us survive these difficult times.
In addition, it was very good to receive The Most Rev. Thabo Cecil Makgoba, Primate of Cape Town, and The Rt. Rev. Laish Boyd, Bishop of Nassau and The Bahamas, who are visiting at this moment. I also give thanks to all other bishops and archbishops of the Anglican Communion who have expressed their support to us.
The earthquake of Jan. 12 was our baptism; now is our new creation. In this new creation, we pray to all work together, and we ask that you give us the time we need, first to care for our people, then to rebuild the Kingdom.
In this Lenten season, the season of repentance, conversion and intense prayers, we ask you to remember our Diocese and all the people of Haiti in this difficult moment. We also ask you to continue to support us by your prayers and your gifts, so that by Eastertide, we will be able to sing together with great joy, “Alleluia! He is Risen!”

I bid you my blessings for this holy season.

The Right Jean Zaché Duracin
                                     Bishop of Haiti

Letter from Pere Sadoni to Hope Lennartz

Dear Hope,

I am glad to received this message from you. I hope mine find you well. As you can imagine and see from father Squire's report, we lost everything at St Vincent. They stole evrything that was in my office even a bag full of staff for the kids and my office's chair. So now we need to start from ZERO. I open an office without nothing.

Bill Squire brought a Laptop and a printer for the secretary, that is good. But we don't have energy to run it and we don't have enough money in our account to buy a generator. the first thing now it to have a genarator. If I have to choose between having now a genarator and a copier i will choose a genarator. Because, when the gorvement ask to restart with the school activities in p-au-p, we will need it to pump the water up to the floor for the toilet.

I do need thing for my office, for now I can't tell you what specific thing that i need. You can send whatever that they use in an office. Stapples, trumborn, desk Canon copier (maybe a Canon, Image Runner 1019J, and some tonner GPR22 to use in it), Chaires (we can buy them in P-au-P), water cooler (we can buy it in P-au-P), metale file (we can find it in P-au-P) etc...

For the school: In my first e-mail I said that they stole the thermoform, I was wrong. I found out that it was there two weeks after sendding this first message. I hope it is in good condition because it felt down on the floor. we found almost all the brailler but now we need like you said barille paper and braillon, pencil and pen, paper craft, regular paper, copy books, etc... M. Alexis will make a list for me next week.

I don't know if I am too long in this e-mail but we do need these thing to restart St vincent in a short term.

May God bless you,

Sadoni

News from Lee Warren


Folks,

  I’ve gotten a lot of press in the local papers over the past months. I mean, a lot. My trip to Haiti right after the quake created several weeks of press across the entire county and farther. I go to Food Lion and a cashier says, “Aren’t you the lady who went to Haiti?”  Two little girls knocked on my door one night and had made construction paper thank you cards for helping Haiti.  My presentation at the 135-member Chamber of Commerce inspired a local music store to have a fund raiser for us. Locals have donated to SHN b/c there is a reliable face connected with the place of need. And there’s more, but today was special.  

I went out to Hardee Ford to pick up a $200 check from Dwight, an African-American mechanic who works there. He encouraged his little country church to raise money for SHN. (Remember the days my office was at Hardee Ford?  I shot the breeze with Dwight and always waved and bowed in gratitude as he cut the grass around my office.) Denny Hardee said Dwight has been so excited about raising money for us and it was Denny who sent word today that I was to come pick up the funds.  Dwight told me every church his pastor visited he talked about Lee Warren and what her organization was doing for Haiti.   I can honestly tell you that the $200 check and bear hug I got from Dwight meant as much to me as the $35,000+ checks we received last week for container events.  Dwight said the church wanted to continue to support us.  I know we need the big bucks, the large events, but my job is especially meaningful when rural, small-minded Southside Virginians wake up to the fact that there is a hurting world beyond themselves and their own. When my African-American brothers and sisters honor me by supporting SHN I am even the more humbled. 

Here endeth this testimony.
Today’s a good day and I had to share.

sent in by Lee Warren