Many of you have read or heard about the Rose Charities projects in Haiti which were initiated following the earthquake in January of this year (if not, see the summary on this website). I am one of the nurses who has had the privilege of participating in all three of these projects.
The 40 foot container of medical supplies and five medical training mannequins sent for the State Nursing School in Port at Prince, L’Ecole Nationale Infirmieres de Port au Prince, have arrived safely. We are excited that the container recently received customs clearance! so is now awaiting transport to the nursing school. The mannequins should also be released from customs soon.
The attached photos, taken in June, are of the tents UNICEF provided the nursing school this past spring.
This project has been a success due to a committed team of Rose volunteers here in Canada but began because of the quiet determination of the school’s director, Madame Ylonde Nazaire.
I first met Madame Nazaire in April at a meeting to discuss supporting continuing education for Haitian nurses. She was interested in this agenda but patiently waited to explain that the demolished school had been promised temporary tent buildings, and eventually a new building, but what she and the school’s administration needed urgently was materials to resume classes so that the surviving students would not lose their school year in addition to losing classmates and their school.
Since then Madame Nazaire has persistently advocated for these nursing students and her school while faced with challenges such as having to wait several months for the supplies, bad lines during my phone calls, and navigating customs procedures. One evening when I called her a bit late, I heard a lot of traffic noise so asked where she was and discovered that she was living in the street outside her damaged home! (thankfully a few months ago she was able to move back into her home)
Despite the difficulties of her personal situation and the devastation surrounding her, Madame Nazaire has demonstrated determination, hope and resilience………like many other Haitians I have admired since my first trip to Haiti almost 12 years ago.