Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Beyond Hôpital Albert Schweitzer

At 0600 I headed to the Hôpital Albert Schweitzer /Hanger clinic to meet up with the team heading out to the orphanage located in Port au Prince. As we packed all the supplies needed for the day on the van, I started to realize how very beautiful the morning was, as the temperature had not yet reach its usual scorching degrees. We then drove to L'Escale to gather the three candidates who were traveling to Port-au-Prince with us.

We drove along in silence and as the van sped along I began to notice the very serene, peaceful, scenic captivatingly beautiful countryside that was so green and lush. From the distance I could barely recognize all the different kinds of vegetation that grew affront the mountains and fell as a beautiful backdrop. How easy it is to differentiate the countryside that is fortunate enough to have ample supply of water flowing through it, from that of Deschapelles that always appears dry, barren and uninviting.

For the next two hours I continued to be captivated by the mesmerizingly beautiful landscape that seemed to call out to us as we drove by. As we approached Port-au-Prince however, everything changed from serene beautiful, green, picturesque landscape to congested, loud traffic and broken damaged buildings that seemed to have crumbled down as layered pancakes. Crowds of people were everywhere, busying themselves about. School children were dressed in their beautifully colored uniforms and women carried a days worth of merchandise to sell on their heads. The cars, van, trucks, motorcycles and bicycles all competed to be first in getting through the traffic. As we continued to drive we saw many areas where tents have been set up and have become homes for those displaced by the earthquake. The name that is now given to these areas is TENT CITY. There were rows and rows of blue top tents lining any and every vacant lot that was available in Port-au-Prince. What will ever become of the capital of Haiti?

We arrived at the orphanage just about 0930. The van pulled up to a very large iron gate. When opened, we drove into an area that had beautiful buildings and gardens and also a number of tents that lined the court yard. Not here too.

I soon realized that the tents were where the volunteers for the orphanage were residing. This particular orphanage was the home for mentally challenged and HIV positive children. Very few candidates with earthquake related injuries were living here. Nonetheless, this was a convenient site used to accommodate amputated candidates who needed to be measured and fitted for prosthesis. Today we will care for the 10 candidates that were previously scheduled.

After the completion of measuring and casting of the 10 candidates we headed to the Port-au-Prince airport to welcome another volunteer and pick up some much needed supplies. The supplies were desperately needed to continue the manufacturing of the prosthesis back at the HAS/Hanger clinic.

Our journey back to Deschapelles started at 1630, as we drove along I monitored the beautifully changing views of the sunset over the mountains, how peaceful and relaxing. It will be a very long ride home, but it certainly will be breathtaking, and soothing to the eyes. This is certainly a wonderful and beautiful memory, to have of the countryside of Haiti as I will be completing my mission and heading home in less than 36 hours.

Thanks for reading-Project HOPE volunteer Joy Williams

Help support Project HOPE's long-term efforts to help the people of Haiti. DONATE NOW

No comments:

Post a Comment