Every trip is hard, due to the extreme amount of poverty, hunger and sickness, but this one in particular seemed even harder. I led a medical team of nine down to Mirebalais Haiti for a week-long medical clinic to be held at the school our non-profit had opened this past fall. I stood by and watched as Doctors and nurses saw everything from scabies and fungal infections to pneumonia and lacerations.
Two little girls in particular grabbed my attention. The help they needed to receive would have been an easy fix here in the states, but our team wasn’t equipped to help. The first little girl, five years old, was born with hydrocephalus and needed a shunt put in. She was in extreme discomfort due to the fluid putting pressure on her brain, she kept saying “her head hurt”.
The second little girl, six years old, had been born with a seizure disorder and simply needed to be put on a regular dose of seizure meds. Our Dr’s did their best to plan ahead for all the different kind of infections they could potentially see and help. Seizure medicine was not on the list.
Before we stepped on the plane to return home, I received word the both of these little girls passed away.
A surgeon, who was a part of our team, was planning on making the connections back home to be able to bring the little girl with hydrocephalus to the states for her procedure. It was too late.
Why am I sharing these stories with you? As I write this article, we are in the middle of a quarantine here in the states. Shelves are bare, daily necessities are running out, hospitals are at capacity, schools and businesses are shut
down. Definitely uncertain times, that are bringing fear to many. Now, take those same thoughts about what I just shared, and place yourself in a place without running water. Without electricity. Without food pantries or government assistance. Imagine never having been able to send your child to school or having any access to medical care. Having no “rainy day” funds for the unknown.
You guys, this is the very real struggle every day for millions of people. People like you and like me, who just want to provide and care for their families.
I’m certain we will bounce back from this. Shelves will once again be stocked and schools will be opened. My hope is that when that happens we don’t forget the most vulnerable in this world. My hope is that by experiencing this fear and uncertainties, our compassion for humanity and the least of these, will grow greater than ever before