The details are always a little different but the story is always the same. Every trip to Lacoma brings growth and family. For some unknown reason this community is home- home to 60,000+ Haitians and home to Peace Love Haiti. We can't stay away. The second time that I went there was in the spring of 2011. The team house was freshly finished and there were still a LOT of rocks there lying around and constructions remnants and garbage. One morning we woke up at about 6am and there were 20-25 elderly women sitting around outside the house. "What the heck? Are they here for some free tylenol?" I said to Evey. We watched them for a bit and soon we realized that they were out there tidying the yard and planting some mangey dying sticks. This is the desert, and the aloe grows but not much else. Well, the dying stick that they planted just outside of the team house has grown and grown. It is about 300 times bigger than any other tree in the yard and now provides shade for our tents- no longer do we have to fry our brains if we sleep past 6am. Our support for the community and their support for us just gets stronger and stronger. One love.
The spring trip was fantastic. Our PLH/Sagebrush medical team consisted of 2 RNs, a veterinarian, an EMT, a dentist, an oral surgeon, and their assistants. We had Winnie and Milo translating and Kervens running the pharmacy. We had our Lacoma workers Nurse Fabi and Madam St. Daman doing triage and Fanny and Woodlin doing lab work. We saw a LOT of patients- both human and animal. It made my heart so happy to have a vet on our team and she was busy! Once word got out people from all over the community showed up in our yard, happy to wait in line to vaccinate their sheep, goats, dogs, and cats. Dr Laura would put a collar on each animal that was vaccinated and I think she ran out of them by the 3rd day.
|Medications in our pharmacy thanks to YOU and you DONATIONS|
|Sheep vaccination day was everyday!|
|This is what pneumonia looks like|
We had a construction team of 6 volunteers that were working on rebuilding part of the school- the hurricane last fall ripped the roof of a couple of classrooms. Our team worked with the local workers and the Haitian engineer and got the foundation set for part of a new addition. It looked like mixing cement in the sun by hand all day was a lot harder than being a nurse....
Another huge project underway was the replumbing of the community's water source. All the water comes from "up the mountain" and until now I have never pondered what that really meant. Of course this isn't potable water, but it is the only water. This water trickles down the mountain through a series of mysterious pipes and there are many sites around the area to access it. It is the source of the water at the filtration station outside the clinic that 3 Strand Cord and Sagebrush built. The hurricane dumped boulders on the pipes where this water originates and stopped the flow, so there has been no water in this area since October. The community (lead by Pastor Gesnel) bonded together and worked long hard hours to replumb the mountain so Lacoma and the surrounding areas could have water again. Community!
|Cool mountain spring!!!|
|Part of our team!!!|