Shortly after the January earthquake, Project HOPE sent a team of experts from Mass General Hospital to evaluate how to best contribute to rebuilding health capacity in Haiti.
By: Courtney Guthreau
Shortly after the January earthquake, Project HOPE sent a team of experts from Mass General Hospital to evaluate how to best contribute to rebuilding health capacity in Haiti. They advised us to focus on rehabilitation needs for survivors near the quake’s epicenter. Since then, HOPE has been working to build a comprehensive Rehabilitation Center at the Adventist Hospital (HAH), together with partners Christian Blind Mission and Prosthetika.
Rehab activities have been going on for months without a dedicated space to offer services. HOPE now has a team of U.S. volunteers assembling three modular buildings at HAH – including a 24 x 40 ft Rehab Center, housing for international medical volunteers and housing for patients being fitted for prosthetic limbs.
In coordination with our partner, Humanitarian Network (HN) , the construction team is hiring local Haitians, teaching them how to assemble the structures. All local trainees will receive training certificates, providing short term income and, hopefully, longer term employment opportunities as rebuilding efforts grow.
From the first day containers of building materials arrived at the Hospital, area residents have come forth to help. A local French teacher is now serving as translator for the crew, as well as site administrator. Another man, at the hospital with his wife – an amputee receiving therapy – joined the construction crew. As HN leader Ron White reports, “we showed up and so did they – we share the same mission.”