Mission Trip Report- June 6-14, 2011

Next Trip
   1. First two weeks in February look good. No issues on Father’s side.
   2. Priest retreat is always January so that should not be an issue.
   3. Father needs to spend the night at Matthew 25 the night before the trip so he is there and ready for us to pick him up.

Mass Stipends
   1. We only had a few
   2. No problem

Water Project in Gandou
   1. Father Nexcene reported that he had received about $12,000 euros (~$20,000US) from an organization called Caritos for a water project in the valley just below the rectory.
       ​It looks like some type of collection system for a spring.
   2. We saw a cement base with water pipes coming out but is very unclear where the water the water would come from and how it would work. I don’t think it was yet finished.

Father Nexcene reported there has been many cases of Cholera in Gandou. He reported 5 deaths and 12 people to the hospital.
   1. Father wants to start a latrine project as soon as we can.
   2. People now just go wherever the can.

Father Nexcene’s Priorities
   1. Father really wants to fix the room on the old part of the rectory that was damaged by the earthquake. The estimate to fix this is $12,000.
       A. This would yield another room for our team to stay when we went to Gandou.
       B. This would also have another bathroom on it.
       C. Father said this room has become his #1 priority.
   2. Father’s #2 priority is a full time Nurse for the clinic and to deal with some of these emergencies.
   3. Father still wants to move ahead with the motorcycle project.
   4. Father wants to kick off a construction project for the clinic.
   5. Father wants to see if we can help kids go to the University.
   6. Father asked for a project to help the rebuilding of homes after the earthquake, not just the two we started but all the other ones in the area that need fixed.
   7. Father wants to make sure we continue on with the referral patients. He said we should expect the costs to go up because the hospitals are charging again after the earthquake
       ​and because they now have 3 health care workers to do referrals.
   8. Father is asking for help for farmers of the area. When they don’t have good crops then they don’t have money to buy seeds. Can we help them?
   9. Father is asking for help to do the teacher training before the start of school. It is very important to him. The training is 2 weeks long. There are 2 trainers that come for the
       ​primary school and 2 for the kindergarten. Father feeds everyone and pays the trainers. Cost is $1025 US. Need this by August. Must left father know soon.
 10. There is an epidemic of Cholera in Gandou. 5 people have died. 12 people went to the hospital. Father wants to start a project for Latrines. The Latrines would be at the
        ​home. People now go all over the place.
 11. Father wants a project to work on the road. Little by little he wants to fix it in the worst spots. When it is raining and there is an emergency then they can’t go by truck…I
       ​asked what they do in this situation and Father said they carry the person all the way to the hospital (at least 4hrs away)…or in other cases they just don’t go…
 12. Father has three chapels and two of them have schools. Some members of our team visited one on a previous trip and found it to be yet another Gandou but 3-4 hours walk
       ​from Gandou with absolutely no road.
 13. Father is not always able to pay the teachers in the school much and sometimes they quite and go home. Father wants to know if we can help with this so he can pay them
       ​something. He would like to pay $50US/month ($2.50/day). He pays for 11 months. There are 9 teachers for the two chapel schools. Need to try to find more sponsors for
       ​teachers and students.

Mission Focus Area #2 – Health Care for our Sister Parish
Medical clinic/pharmacy
   1. Clinic Results/Numbers
       A. Totals estimated at about 1,000 Patients that went through our 3 days of clinic including school kids.
   2. Patient flow was steady with an abundance of patients.
   3. We started a day late because of the issues with rain where we spend the first day and a half in Port-au-Prince and only arrived in Gandou after the rain stopped.
   4. We made sure that anyone who wanted to go to clinic got to go to clinic, those who seemed the poorest or the most needy were put at the front of the line.
   5. Most every patient that came into the clinic had an ID card either from a previous trip or from our ID card station that was producing ID cards this trip.
   6. We used lights most every night some to finish. This was especially important because we lost one day of clinic due to the rain.
   7. On our last day there, many people wanted to be seen by the doctor and we went late into the night.
   8. Several patients came back to thank us for medical care they had received in the past. Many of these were from the last trip where we had done surgeries. There were people
       ​that had mass removals, and hernia that came back to thank us.
   9. The most moving person that came back to thank us for the medical care he had previously received was a young boy that came in last time with an emergency case for an
       ​appendix removal. He came back this trip smiling and as happy as can be. Several photos were taken of his scar and his smiling face.
 10. Next time before we start clinic on the first day we need to take everyone around to the different areas of our clinic and have that area leader talk the rest of the team through
       ​what supplies, medicines, and tests they have available to work with. Even though everything is on our formulary we always seem to get to the end of the week and someone
       ​says…”I did not know we had that”. This the Haitian doctor we had with us seemed surprised by the urine dipsticks.
 11. Before we started the clinic we talked to the health care workers about the blood pressure program. They said they could still handle the number of patients in the program
       ​and would be ok if we added about 30 more patients. We added close to this number to the program.
 12. The heart murmur patients were back through clinic again this time and there is still a great need to bring them to the USA for surgery. Roseberline however does no longer
       ​need to come for surgery. The doctors are saying her heart is fine.
 13. We had a 17 year old girl come to clinic with a baby that was only a couple months old. The mother of the baby died. The father is also not around. She has been given the
       ​baby. She was trying to care for the baby. She has no milk for the baby. She has been feeding it anything she can find for it to drink…tea..water…We did not have any
       ​formula for the baby. We took the baby to the rectory and found the cooks had some condensed milk. Took the milk and put it in a water bottle with a spout and feed the
       ​baby. We talked to father and the young girl together. Turns out she is caring for two kids in a similar manner. The second child is a little older. We worked out a plan for
       ​Father to get some formula for the mother to give the baby. Father will have a health care worker track the weight of the baby to make sure it is growing. Formula is very
       ​expensive in Haiti. We left $300 for formula but I don’t think it will last too long.
 14. On Sunday a very poor mother with 7 kids came to the rectory. She had only one arm. She talked about how she could not feed her kids. She talked about how she could not
       ​afford to send her kids to school. She talked about how her husband was not around to help. She was very embarrassed by her situation. Father Nexcene and the translator
       ​were there with me. This was not the first time they have heard a story like this, but there was something especially bad about this situation because both of them were
       ​moved to tears. I could not believe it. Both of them are strong and a bit callused men…but this poor mother broke through all that in just a couple minutes. It was clear she
       ​needed help. This is a clear example of why we go to Gandou.
 15. We had a older man come to clinic on the last day and he had not urinated all day. He was in extreme pain. We needed a urinary catheter. We searched, but did not have one.
       ​After looking around and finding nothing the patient finally said that he brought one…when he pulled it out of the dirty old plastic bag it was in Dr. Ryan said he could smell
       ​the infection on it. He had no choice but to use it. He tried using it but it did not work well. We decided the patient was going to need to go to the hospital in Jacmel, but it
       ​was too late to send anyone down the mountain that day. We gave him morphine and he sleep the night at the clinic and some members of the team (translators) took him
      ​down the mountain on Sunday while we were at mass.
 16. On that same Sunday morning we also found out that there was someone in the area having a baby and apparently having some trouble so the translators took her as well. 30
       ​minutes after getting to the hospital the baby was born. Praised be God…this mother and baby were spared.
 17. Team would like more shelves on the walls of the clinic in the wound care area and in the pharmacy area.
 18. An organization called Save the Children built a latrine by the clinic. It is nice.

Dental clinic and extractions
   ​1. Dental Results/Numbers
       A. Estimated at about 300 extractions (used almost all 350 vials of anesthetic).
   2. Worked in tents and it was very hot. We think the problem was the type of tent they used had sides on it that kept any air from moving. Next time we need to make sure we
       ​get a tent without any sides.
   3. Dr. Lentz (from Haiti) did a great job and worked very hard and long days. He did much dental care.
   4. Eric Brewer helped much in the dental clinic at first, but after they got everything setup and going then Dr. Lentz and the new health care worker were able to keep
       ​everything going just fine and Eric was able to come over to the medical clinic and help there.
   5. When we were all done with the week we left the dental tools with Father Nexcene in the rectory in some donated hard shell suitcases so we don’t have to take them back
       ​and forth each trip.
   6. Father begged us to bring a larger dental team for the next trip. He said the people really need this and the people would really like to have someone come to do cleaning
       ​again. This seems very important to them. I told them we would try our best to do this.

ID Cards
   1. Really need a “How To” document to train people how to do this.
   2. Once we got the system figured out again the process worked very well.
   3. Equipment broke each day. Most of the time we got it working again. Near the end of the day it seemed to give up and stop working and we would stop printing ID cards.
   4. Each night we prayed and the next day the equipment seemed to go back to working.
   5. Need a new printer before the next trip.
   6. ID card team did a great job.
   7. Team reported that they really could not do the ID cards without a translator.
   8. There were at least 2 team members plus a translator working at ID cards the whole time and this seemed to work well.
   9. The ID card team has a very difficult job to do when they are there….keeping peace in the crowd, keeping things organized, keep the equipment going, getting names
        ​spelled correctly, sorting out who is who, keeping pictures connected with names, and doing this for 10hours a day….wow!

Mission Focus Area #3 – Team Members Experience Haiti and Especially Our Sister Parish
Stay in Port-au-Prince
   1. First night we knew that it was going to be too wet on the road to Gandou, and we were not going to be able to go so we planned to stay in Port-au-Prince and work in an
   2. Got to the guest house in Port-au-Prince early in the day (~3pm) and decided to take some of the medical team out to check out one of the orphanages’ clinic and pharmacy
       ​so we would know what to bring the next day to the orphanage.
   3. Took us 2hrs to get from the Guest house to the orphanage (maybe 8 miles). Roads and traffic was bad.
   4. We found the orphanage clinic and pharmacy to be well stocked and ready for us. The orphanage leaders (young American women) where very happy to have our medical
       ​team there to help because they had several very sick kids and also some sick staff members/volunteers.
   5. When we left the orphanage it was getting dark and it started to rain extremely hard.
   6. We had trouble getting back from the orphanage because of the high water.
   7. We had to cross some high water. Everyone was so happy when we made it back to the guest house for the night.
   8. Next morning team walked to the Missionaries of Charity Hospital/Orphanage. This was a different Orphanage than the one we went to the night before. The thought was
       ​that we might spend a half day at that orphanage and in the afternoon go back to the one we visited the night before.
   9. After getting the medical team to the Missionaries of Charity Hospital/Orphanage the nuns that run the orphanage were very happy our medical team was there and they set
       ​them up to see the very sick kids. There were so many of them that there was no way we were going to spend just the morning there.
 10. Team worked the morning and the afternoon sessions at the Missionaries of Charity seeing the very sick kids and holding/loving the less sick ones.
 11. Everyone had a unbelievable experience there. You cannot describe with words what we saw there….the rooms full of sick kids, all attention starved, all love starved, all
       ​needing a mother and father.
 12. I think everyone left the orphanage hurt, confused, sad, and pained by the fact that such a place as Haiti exists where so many kids are left in such a situation…having
       ​nothing…not even that with which everyone is given by nature – a father and mother. Not only did these kids lack God given parents but they also lacked basic health. Truly
       ​this day what we did was see and hold Jesus…surely this changed everyone of us forever…surely we will no longer be happy just helping the poor while we ourselves lack
       ​nothing…surely we will no longer be happy until they are happy.
 13. The next day the team traveled to the second orphanage and the medical team saw their kids and some people from the local area.
 14. One of the kids at this second orphanage had had a critical situation the night before and the orphanage leaders reported that he had stopped breathing. The doctors cared for
       ​this patient first, and after being there for just a few hours they had this patient nursed back to normal stable breathing.
 15. Our team stayed at this second orphanage until Father Nexcene from our sister parish made it down to pick us up.
 16. We met Father Nexcene at a local gas station and we transferred many of our bags to his truck tied everything down and left for Gandou at about 1pm….far later in the day
       ​that we every want to leave for Gandou.

Travel to Gandou
   1. Traveled late in the day.
   2. The roads were bad, wet and washed out.
   3. Some of the time we were glad it was dark.
   4. Stopped only to rest for a few minutes when we had to.
   5. When we got to the town of LaVallee I asked Father Nexcene if it made more sense to stay the night there and go to Gandou in the morning. Father did not think so, and he
        ​said there are no provisions for us to do so. All we could do was trust Father…he has done this many times.
   6. Rental truck was loaded so heavy that they had to stop on the hills several times.
   7. Several times the people in the rental truck would find that the truck could not make it up the hill by itself and they would stop on the hill and everyone would have to get
       ​out. Once everyone got out the driver was able to get started again and get to the top of the hill where everyone would load up again and continue on.
   8. It was very dark by the time we got to Gandou. We were very happy to finally get there.
   9. Supper was waiting on us there. We ate and everyone went to bed.

Accommodations in Gandou
   1. Women stayed in the two rooms in the rectory, while men were in tents on the flat room.
   2. Two bathrooms were available for the women.
   3. The tent used by one group of men broke and it was partially falling down on them.
   4. We had sent father a little money to fix the old bathroom door…and that was done.
   5. Plenty of water was available for people to use. Team was very conservative.
   6. Everyone did great.

Travel from Gandou back to Port-au-Prince
   1. Through the grace of God we did not have any patients to take back to the city (Jacmel) with us at the end of our mission, so we were able to go back to Port-au-Prince
        ​through a different route than we normally take.
   2. After the earthquake apparently there has been much work done on this road because it was far better than anything we have seen before in Haiti.
   3. The road was much quicker and easier than the old way.
   4. The travels only took us 5hrs versus the normal 8-10 hours.
   5. This was the easiest trip back we have ever done.
   6. Everyone was very happy to be at the airport early and finally able to rest a little.

Exposure to Haiti
   1. The activities at the beginning of the trip which exposed the team to the difficulties the Haitians face each time it rains was eye opening for everyone.
   2. The time at the orphanages in Port-au-Prince are probably the most eye opening experiences that show the true side of Haiti. Since we were able to walk back and forth to
        ​the orphanage, just walking the streets like a Haitian…dodging the yuck on the streets, the people selling stuff, the traffic was good for everyone to see.
   3. The travel to and from Gandou is always good for people to experience because it too opens our eyes to the way that people live.
   4. The sights of the tent cities are clear signs of suffering people.
   5. The slum area we drive past is unbelievable.
   6. While in Gandou much of the team go to walk to the spring and to market. This helped them better understand the daily life in Gandou.


General Haiti Earthquake Situation
   1. Very little progress in Port-au-Prince.
   2. Fields of tents and makeshift homes.
   3. Some people have setup their home in the median between the streets
   4. Unclear how this is going to work when it is raining.
   5. Unclear where these people are going to the bathroom.
   6. Unclear how they are cooking.
   7. Tents are all very close together.
   8. Some homes going up along the road to Jacmel.

Matthew 25 Earthquake Situation
   1. Soccer field empty. Not longer have the 2,000 people living there like they did after the earthquake.
   2. Somehow they found some way to find some other place for the people to go.

Day by Day Events Summary:
   1. Friday June 3 – Got word late in the day from Father Nexcene that it is raining hard in Gandou and he was not going to be able to come down to pick us up.
   2. Saturday June 4 – Discussed different options with the team regarding the trip…decided to get everyone together on Sunday to decide what to do.
   3. Sunday June 5 – Team decided that rescheduling the trip was not going to work very well and we should go down to Haiti anyway and just pray that things work out. We
       ​believed we could work in some orphanages in Port-au-Prince if nothing else.
   4. Monday June 6 – Team joined all together. Traveled down to Haiti. Travels went fine. Got to Haiti earlier than normal and went to the guest house earlier than normal. We
       ​knew that we were not going to Gandou the next day so we decided to just work in Port-au-Prince orphanages on Tuesday. Decided to take part of the team to the orphanage
       ​on Monday night to check it out. Very hard rain came down while we were out and had trouble getting back.
   5. Tuesday June 7 – Walked to an orphanage close to the Guest house. Worked there all day. Medical team got to see patients there. Rest of the team jut held kids. Unbelievable
   6. Wednesday June 8 – Sent the medical team to the second orphanage early in the morning. They started seeing all their patients. Found out that Father Nexcene was on his
        ​way down the mountain to come and get us. Send the rest of the team to the orphanage to wait on Father. By the time we got all the team to the orphanage Father was in
        ​Port-au-Prince to get us. We loaded our stuff on this truck and left for Gandou at about 1pm. Traveled to Gandou late in the day. Road was very bad.
   7. Thursday June 9 – Setup medical and dental clinic and had clinic all day.
   8. Friday June 10 – Ran medical and dental clinic all day. Spend morning seeing school kids.
   9. Saturday June 11 – Ran medical and dental clinic all day and late into the evening.
 10. Sunday June 12 – Gandou team goes to Mass and helps any patients that stopped by during the day. Team rested some.
 11. Monday June 13 – Traveled back to Port-au-Prince. Got up at 3:30am. Drive was the shortest ever…just 5 hours…that was easy. Traveled to Miami and spent the night there
       ​in a hotel.
 12. Tuesday June 14 – Traveled from Miami to Cincinnati and finally home.