As you heard from HFI co-founder Lynn Shapira here on Town Square Delaware, a contingent of Delawareans is currently in Haiti on their second tour to aid the Hatian people. TSD will be publishing updates from the team periodically throughout their journey. You can support the HFI effort by donating online at http://www.haitifamilyinitiative.org.
“The middle of the week is difficult in any camp. You either crash and the next two days are unbearable, or you gain steam and finish out strong.” Dan related his experience running camps for the Boy Scouts of America.
The ride over provided a true trial of the team’s tenacity. Halfway to the camp the bus silently slid to a stop. The engine cranked and whirred to a stop. 8 members of the team piled out of the bus to push it along.
The morning began again with singing and dancing. Kim Zoltek corralled the volunteers to introduce themselves with a fun dance move. The children imitated each movement with an energetic “Bonjour!”
The team comes from intensely varied backgrounds. Nadiv, an American citizen who was born and raised in Israel works with Prath, an Indian doctor, Ivy, a nursing professor from southern California and Stew, from Delaware. Charly, a teenager from California, works with two more teens from Delaware. Kim and Dan are both recent graduates of Temple University while Kira recently graduated from Western University in Canada. Brian, a lawyer, works triage with Jean. Mark supervises various groups throughout the day. Cheri is a social worker from Philadelphia.
The range of diseases treated by the doctors is just as wide. Maladies brought on by dehydration are simple to treat. Malnutrition is rampant. Surgical infections cause intense boils to form on many of the children. Many patients are seeing doctors for the first time in their lives.
Mya, Lizzie and Kira went with Kim down to the beach to play with the girl’s group, a successful division from the day before, while Dan, Gabe, Charlie and Ben had the boys in yet another intense game of soccer. Dan and Charlie kicked off their shoes, feet beginning to callous against the hot, stony sand.
After the day ended, the medical team took to playing soccer with the children. It was more difficult to pry them onto the bus than it was to get the kids to leave the camp.