Saturday, July 17, 2010

The Story Of Shada

Immediately after you cross the bridge out of Cap Haitien, Haiti, on the right is the community named Shada, home to several thousand Haitians. It is a slum beyond the imagination of someone who has never been there. The closest I have seen in Haiti is the famous Cite Soleil. in Port Au Prince. The biggest difference is that where Cite Soleil has charities providing medical care, orphan resources, and schools - Shada has practically none of these.

It does have a small medical clinic that is only open one day a week due to limited funding. The "playground" is next to the water. It consists of a hard packed dirt lot, with open sewer streaming through draining into the adjacent water front. The huts are packed so tightly together you're forced to turn sideways to navigate the narrow paths - Again streaming with open sewage.

A request was recently sent out for additional funding for the clinic to pay a doctor in order to open a second day of the week. The residents of Shada have no money. They have to wait for the free clinic to open to take a sick child in for care, even if it means waiting 5 or 6 days for the next clinic day. The days I worked there, I saw several children under 2 diagnosed with Tuberculosis, but not receiving treatment due to financial constraints.

The clinic at Shada has been run by a midwife, Madame Bwa, for over 30 years (She is one of my heroes). Her adult sons now work in the clinic with her helping register patients, triaging, and keeping the patient flow moving. The clinic is open until it runs out of medications for the day. This past Wednesday, although there were over 150 patients waiting to be seen, only 47 could be treated due to that's all the medications that were available.

The clinic is currently in need of a good supply of medications. Funding to allow it to be open at least 3 days a week. An area for a laboratory along with basic lab equipment. Perhaps most needed, additional space for patient waiting, treatment, and examinations. Two adjacent rooms are currently available for purchase for $4,000 US.

I plan to continue taking medical teams here for mobile clinics when possible. The coolest thing about Shada clinic is that it really is Haitian people administering the clinic and providing the care. They just don't have the material or economic resources to provide the needed care for their community due to the extreme impoverished state of the community. When I wrote about the playground above, I didn't write about the children playing on it. Without exception, they all have the red hair and pot bellies that come with severe malnutrition. Yet still they were having a blast playing football - With a mango.

Hopefully you will decide to be a part of the "All Things Are Possible" campaign. We are seeking 400 people willing to commit to donating at least $10 a month for the next year. Your donation will make a huge difference for places in Haiti like Shada. I have committed to helping sponsor a second doctor with a portion of your donations. If you would like to make a specific donation to help expand the clinic, open a school, or join the micro-loan program in Shada, this can be arranged as well.

Please send your donations to:
Campus Church
Attn: Amy Freeman
1525 Indian Trail Road
Norcross, GA 30093
Note: Randy Moore - Haiti Mission Fund

Peace and grace,

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