Written by Carol and Jim VanArtsdalen
What a great honor it was to be with l’Hopital de la Convention Baptiste d’Haiti (HCBH) at their 10th anniversary celebration. Supporters and well wishers came from the US, UK, Switzerland and the UN. Haitian dignitaries exuded local, regional and national pride with all that has been accomplished… TOGETHER! Together, we celebrated, we paraded led by the high school band, fine local talent sang, played and danced, and together we thanked God that against all odds, this incredible blessing has emerged that gives Hope to some of world’s most needy.
Since its humble beginnings as a medical clinic, the hospital has grown into an important regional resource, setting so many new standards of care.
- respite/treatment center for children with disabilities*
- Spinal/Stroke Rehabilitation center providing specialized therapies*
- Challenging widely held stigmas with the Disability Is Not Inability campaign* that sent a rehabilitated earthquake victim to compete in hand cycling at the London 2012 ParaOlympic Games
- Inclusive Sports Center* where the able-bodied work out with, and are even trained by, those with physical disabilities.
- Regional Cholera treatment center co-created with Doctors Without Borders. Over 300 patients treated/day in the height of the epidemic, and more recently, our knowledge and process blessed hurricane victims elsewhere in the country.*
- maternity and pediatric wards (recently, 170 babies born in one month!)
- neonatal unit* (designed for 10 incubators but now sometimes treating 20+ infants simultaneously)
- Surgical Department (Haitian surgeons contract to use our facilities and pre/post op services)
- Emergency Dept with ambulance service
- Recently opened Radiology department with digital x-ray.
* signifies an area that is among the finest in the country
I’m exhausted just typing the list of all that has been accomplished. This has taken an international team surrounding what’s now over 250 talented and committed Haitian team members providing the best health care they can, regardless of a patient’s ability to pay.
TOGETHER over the years, our hearts were broken as we realized that in Haiti, children die for lack of a few dollars to pay for basic treatment
And TOGETHER, we’ve done something about it, now offering Hope to thousands each year that cannot afford to pay. THANK YOU!
TOGETHER, we’re befriending and educating dedicated Haitian staff to continually improve the medical capabilities in the region. THANK YOU!
TOGETHER we can and we must continue. The injustice of extreme poverty continues in Haiti, and will continue until a real economy emerges within the country (for many reasons, best not to hold your breath). Until then, those who can pay for HCBH’s medical services will pay. But those who cannot pay will not be turned away. They will be cared for, in the name of Jesus and according to God’s instructions to care for those less fortunate.
Will you join us, so TOGETHER we can continue to save lives? We wish you could all have been there to sense just how incredible it is to be a small part of a very big deal that only God could orchestrate. And we hope that you’ll feel a nudge to join in, or continue on, in what God is doing in and through us at HCBH. Your time, your talent, and yes, your treasure, saves the lives of some of the world’s most vulnerable. THANK YOU!