St. Michael Catholic Parish
Arrived in Port Au Prince Thursday. Spent Friday morning and afternoon exploring the city. An incredible experience. The city still has a lot of damage from the earthquake from 7 years ago. Drove through the market area and it took about an hour to move half a mile… huge number of people and vehicles trying to share the streets. I had a lost bag from the flight the day before. So, we had to stick around Port Au Prince until afternoon until the bag arrived. Very thankful that it was found. That bag had all my belongings for the week. Today was our first day of dental clinic. So, many young people needing to have a tooth or two pulled. The dentists, Patrick and Pasquel, are so efficient yet compassionate how they do their business. All the kids seemed so relaxed as they were getting their teeth pulled. I did mostly assist work for the dentists… setting up syringes and giving utensils. There is so much need here in Haiti. It can be overwhelming. Yet, I think the small things that are being done by St. Michaels are making people’s lives better. I have heard so much about the well in front of St. Joseph that was put in a number of years ago by St. Michael’s. It truly is a blessing for them. The water is being drawn non stop. That affects so many people’s lives. Tomorrow, we will hit LeRoche to bless the cisterns. Looking forward to this. This has been a life project for my mom and St. Michaels to get water to as many people as possible. I am very proud of the work she has done. Coming up this week we will be trying to set up a latrine for Thome. We also have 4 more extraction clinics and fluoride applications. More to come………
May 2016 :: Sensational Swansons! ::
Our journey is nearly over. The day was a very special one. Being with the children and babies at Mother Therese House is touching. They love to be snuggled and hugged. Putting them back into their beds is the hard part. It is sad to leave them crying to be held more. The young boys loved the soccer balls. We enjoyed watching them play The afternoon was seeing the sights of Haiti and shopping for special things to bring home. Though it will be good to be home I find leaving Haiti sad. This was a week that was very special. Because of the accomplishments and the joy of being with this team…..Tim, a faithful of Haiti and my mentor, Lavina who works so hard and is always with the traveling team. Having my son and 2 grandchildren be a part of the dental clinic was such blessing. I am grateful
This is our last night in Fonds Parisian There is a sadness in leaving Fonds Parisian tomorrow. It was a fun time and very productive.
I will miss it it all except the hot hot weather. It was a
special team with Tim, Bob, Daniel, LaVina, Hannah.
Yesterday I was not able to go to the last day of the dental clinic because I was sick when I woke up, but by the end of the day I was feeling back to normal for the most part thankfully. Although, I do wish I could have made one last trip up into the mountains before leaving Haiti. It was one of the most scenic and beautiful places I have ever been. Now that we are back in Port Au Prince, we are staying at Wall’s guest house again and have been loving the air conditioning at night. Today was a good day to relax and go to Mother Theresa’s Orphanage and do some sight seeing. We were not able to take pictures there, but holding the baby’s there was one of my favorite parts of the trip. I could tell that they loved the attention from everyone that was there to spend time with them. After the orphanage we were able to do some sight seeing, and we went to a restaurant overlooking all of Port Au Prince, and ate lunch with the most scenic view. It is hard to believe that this trip is coming to and end now. I do not have any regrets on coming here at all. It has been one of the most eye opening experiences of my life and I am so thankful for the people that I was able to share it with. Being here with family has made it all the better and the people I have met on this trip I plan on keeping in touch with. It was also nice to have Hannah here so that I have someone my age that I am close to. I am happy to see her, my grandma, and Uncle Bob enjoy this just as much as I have. I feel blessed that God was watching over us and helping us with everything that we did on this trip. Haiti is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been, and everyone here that we have encountered have greeted us with love. I sure hope that this trip is not my last.
Today we were able to accomplish more than I could have hope for.
Hannah and I were able to go to a public school across the street and
teach them about dental hygiene, one of which had over 140 children.
It is a huge difference from schools in the United States, and was
truly eye opening to me. I could not have asked to be here with a
better group of people, especially since half of them are my family,
and getting to know the interpreters, drivers, doctors, Tim, and
LaVina has been a blessing. We have had so much fun while
accomplishing everything that we came here for. I think that along with the people in Haiti that we have been able to help, we have all gotten so much out of this trip as well. I look forward to the last few days of our stay here and what is to come in them.
This morning the church was filled with people for mass. We were able
to here the choir that we have been listening to practice all week, who were absolutely amazing singers. Even though we did not understand what they were singing, it was easy to tell that they truly meant everything that they sung. Thanks to Patrick we were able to have Father Leland’s homily translated to us, and my Uncle Bob and I were able to speak to the people at mass to tell them how thankful we were for how greatly they have welcomed us. It has been great getting to know the people here more and more such as Pascal, Will, and both Patricks. Today at the clinic even though we had to start late, we
were able to serve over one hundred people. Then after we are all tired we were able to come back to a huge dinner just as we have everyday. I am more and more thankful for the opportunity to come here and serve the people of Haiti everyday, and have enjoyed my time here greatly.
It was a fun-filled day today! We got to visit Mother Theresa’s orphanage. This was an experience of a lifetime. We spent our time just being able to hold and cuddle the little ones. Its so heartbreaking seeing all of these little babies that just want love that they don’t receive often. I absolutely fell in love with an 8-month old little boy that did not want to leave my arms, (my mom almost got a little Haitian grandchild). Then after, we traveled throughout Port au Prince and saw the most amazing view at the top of a mountain and then did a little shopping at the local markets. This place is truly amazing and I can’t believe I was able to have this experience. I am so blessed for that. This will not be my last time here so, SEE YA SOON HAITI!
Today was great! Daniel and I were able to go over to a near by school
and talk to the kids about good dental hygiene. It was amazing to see the difference in class size compared to in the US. In one classroom, there was 140 kids which was shocking. Meanwhile, the clinic was still running, serving over 100 patients again today. We have one
more day at the clinic and hope to finish up all the people that need
help with their teeth! It’s has been an absolutely amazing trip and we will see what else we have in store for the rest of the trip.
Today was a busy, busy day. We started off with an amazing church
service with some many beautiful singers.
After, we headed off for another day at the clinic and served more people today with over 100 patients. It is amazing to see the help that we are giving to these people up in the mountains. The people seemed so greatful for our work which made all of us feel great.
The time so far has just been amazing and I can’t wait to see what else is in store for us on this trip.
You guys will love the pictures!
We arrived in beautiful Haiti to beautiful weather. Nothing but sunshine. It is very hot.
All the prayers from family and friends and out parish family are pretty good prayers! it looks like the cistern is going to be built.
Tomorrow morning we meet with someone from Gift of Water to talk about chlorine water purifiers for the village. Today was our first day of dental clinic. It went very well.
It is always a privilege to be here. I am greatful for the opportunity
Today was the first day of the dental clinic that we are holding in a village up in the mountains near Fond Parisien. The drive up was long and rocky but the views while driving through the mountains were absolutely beautiful. When we arrived we set up a clinic in the chapel of that village, and by that time there were already many people waiting for us both young and old. Once finally getting set up we
ended up treating eighty-three people, most of which needed multiple teeth pulled. While the dentists did this we helped clean utensils, prepare syringes, and have trays ready for them. It was amazing to see how much of a need there was for the dental care given to the people that lived in the mountains as it is something that we often take for granted. Near the end of the clinic today we were also able
to give some of the children that were still there balls, bats, and
candy that we had brought for them, and although we were not able to
communicate with them easily, we could see how thankful they were for them.
Overall, the first day of the clinic was long, but was one of the first things we were able to do here that I could tell was absolutely needed and the people of this village were truly grateful for. Being my first trip to Haiti, this has been a truly eye opening experience to be exposed to this level of poverty, but I do not regret coming in the least bit. I look forward to going back to the village
for the next three days and hopefully being able to serve just as many people as we were today.
First off, this trip has been amazing so far, but dang it’s hot! We seem to busy since the day we arrived. Going great with the occasional hiccup along the way such as the group ditching me on the airport tram (just kidding, my mistake) or leaving a piece of luggage at the airport.
Today, the dental clinic went great and was able to watch the benefit we had among the community. Getting up close and personal was no problem for us as we held the hand of a women getting four of her teeth pulled. The gorgeous view on the way up to the
village was just a topper on the amazing feeling it is to help so many people that are in need.
2014 Kettering Students
Tuesday:: Things we accomplished today:
- Met father Vilnor
- Had a community wide meeting with about 100 people
- Various ages
- almost half men and half women
- The community church roof is fixed.
- It was fixed by fr Vilnor and community
- Had a discussion with the water board.
- Took a walk around Fonds Parisien
- Had a huge lunch at the St Josephs
- We stopped by the hardware store
- It's pretty large and has a lot of the kinds of things we might need
- We plated bacteria cultures for the well in front of St Josephs as well as the tap water at St Josephs
- We also plated a control sample from bottled water
Today as a group, we traveled down the river bed to get a water sample from the source of the river. We found the river was dammed, causing the river to be dry further down and causing great trouble to the people of Leroche. The dam is leaking from several holes along the bottom. Then we split back into groups and one group hiked to another stream while the other group continued doing health surveys. We surveyed 11 houses today in half a day (more efficient!), and made friends along the way with the children. Karen, Bob, and Nurudeen located a second source of water (a very slow spring) which was a treacherous hike to get to, but they made it! We finished collecting and testing all water samples. Also, we evaluated previously plated samples to see how much bacteria is in the water. We also, entered our data into the computer. In other news, Nurudeen and Zach risked being attacked by a vicious guard dog to get water. It's unbelievable that it is already Wednesday! The time has flown by! It's been such a wonderful experience!!
P.S. we are REALLY TIRED
Written by Le Grande Vanessa
Edited by the infamous Nurudeen
Moral Support by "Naming of Galamandos" Zach