Saturday, February 13, 2010

Day AND Night, HOPE Volunteers Provide Care in Haiti

Their lives seem to be a bit upside down. When the rest of the volunteers of Project HOPE gather for dinner, they have breakfast. They go to work when most others return. They are not seen around much. Sometimes they are nicknamed "vampires."

Eight of the Project HOPE volunteers are working the night shift onboard the USNS Comfort.

At the beginning, a few of them admit, it was quite a challenge to adjust to the work schedule of 6 pm to 6 am, since none of them works the night shift back home, but somehow they all got used to it and there is never a word of complaint.

"Someone had to do it," says Karen Zoeller, one of the HOPE volunteering night nurses. "Why not me?"

Project HOPE volunteer Karen Zoeller of Massachusetts General Hospital takes care of Therese Elysee, a Haitian woman who suffered a stroke during the earthquake. Karen's shift starts at 6pm at night and ends at 6am in the morning.

Nurse Karen Zoeller takes care of patients at the intensive care unit of the USNS Comfort during the night shift.
Seasoned HOPE volunteer nurse Rita Kucmierz, from Women's Health Connections in Lindale, Texas and first-time HOPE volunteer nurse Dave Sileo from the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania work the night shift on the USNS Comfort.

Night nurse Christine Edouard, from Winchester Hospital in Winchester, Massachusetts, at work onboard the Comfort floating hospital ship off the coast of Haiti.

Project HOPE volunteer Sandy Larson from Seton Medical Center in Austin, Texas, takes care of Haitian earthquake victims in the intensive care unit on the USNS Comfort.

Returning HOPE volunteer nurse Sandy Larson, 66, works the night shift taking care of Haitian earthquake victims in the intensive care unit on the USNS Comfort.

Volunteer Karen Zoeller talks to a patient's son while working the night shift on the floating hospital ship, the USNS Comfort.

Help HOPE provide long-term medical relief efforts in Haiti. DONATE NOW

Story and photos by HOPE volunteer and photojournalist Astrid Riecken

No comments:

Post a Comment