Thursday, December 24, 2015

Health Fair at Haiti Health Mission

I had the wonderful opportunity of returning to Haiti Health Missions mid November to help with their regular health fair. My purpose in attending and helping was to leave with knowledge of how to possibly replicate this idea up north at NWHCM. I got to work alongside a team from Lakepoint Church in Texas to set up for the fair. This team also took the lead on the health education booth. We spent Monday setting up for the fair (setting up tents, tables, filling water balloons, hanging shade cloth over the grassy areas in front of the clinic to give the kids a place to have activities and play while they wait their turn for an exam and labs.

Preparations the night before meeting with all the volunteers

Tuesday was the day of the health fair. Kids began lining up outside the gate as early as 6AM anticipating participation in the Fair. We had many helpers outside of the Lakepointe team including Global Fingerprints, 15 BS nursing students that came from PAP, and volunteers from Haiti Made. The children's Health Fair was a huge success! We had 365+ kids come through the fair in just 1 day!!!. After registration they went through a variety of education booths including:
-toothbrushing/oral hygiene
-Healthy Eating
-Hand washing
-Bounce House
-Face Painting
-Games- bubbles, soccer, sidewalk chalk, jump rope
- story room
-water safety
After the education/fun booths they all got
-height and weight check
-evaluated by dr. And nurse
-hemocrat blood draw
-vision test
-hearing test
-receive de-worming medication
Then they were able to visit pharmacy for any needed medications.
Any children that were sick or needed more detailed evaluation were given a return appointment for the next day.
I am excited to see how we can possibly replicate this idea up north 

The day of the fair I got to see 2 children who were at the special needs health fair last month. 1 needed some adjustments to his stander and the other needed a walker made. Unfortunately I did not have PVC pipe to make the walker but was able to make a back support for the stander with some cardboard and ductape and thankful that the other little guy will be able to follow up at Respire next week with Ashley. The day after the fair I got to evaluate 2 new children with special needs that showed up for regular clinic and to set them up to get needed equipment made. 

These were my wonderful roomates :-)
only halfway awake in this picture...rolled out of bed to say goodbye

National Handicap Day in Haiti

Thursday was Haiti's National Handicap day. Many towns across Haiti celebrated with a party for those who have a disability and a parade. This year was St. Louis Du Nord's first year to participate. We took 2 truck loads down the the church in town who was hosting.

 It started with a speaker. I am so thankful Presidue was able to translate with sign language for the deaf who were present. Then a lunch was served. After lunch we headed back to the trucks and lined up for the parade. 

The parade went from the church at the end of town to the town square.
As I was standing on the truck participating I felt tears coming to my eyes...these were tears of Joy. Joy because those who are typically so invisible in society were center of attention. I watched each participant in the parade with smiles and confidence and pride as they walked....the parade ended at the town square where a crowd was forming for a concert and some speakers. 

What a beautiful, wonderful day. So thankful the Miriam Center was able to participate