Sunday, March 22, 2009

photos - cite soleil clinic - dr. ed - part 1

Dr. Ed came with a medical team to do a clinic in Cite Soleil at the Maranatha church. We give the Lord thanks that around 220 people could see a doctor and another 25 people could get some teeth pulled!

Lukner helped to control access to the building.

It was a full house but there was enough room for everyone to be seated on the church benches.

From babies to the elderly had the opportunity to see a doctor.

The people are thankful when a clinic is held.

photos - cite soleil clinic - dr. ed - part 2

Willy is part of Action Chretienne Pour le Developpement. He is organizing the seating of the patients. Pastor Enoch is the director of the organization. He is the pastor of the Maranatha church.

Haitian translators helped the doctors communicate with the people.

Here are a couple of the consultation tables at the front of the church.

The pharmacy was kept busy throughout the day.

This man is not enjoying his anesthetic needle!

photos - cite soleil clinic - dr. ed - part 3

This is Dr. Ed, happily getting ready to pull someone's tooth!

In the afternoon we handed out evangelical comic bible tracts to people walking down the street. The children were eager to get one!

It didn't take long to hand them all out. The spiritual well-being of those who come to the clinic is important too!

This woman came with 2 of her children hoping to be able to see a doctor for her youngest child and herself. The medical team was willing to see a few extra people and she was able to get some medicine!

It's a blessing for these people to be able to see a doctor and receive medicine. This boy is getting ready to leave with his bag of medicine.

photos - cite soleil clinic- dr. ed - part 4

This woman was waiting for someone. In Haiti this is how a woman sits when there is no chair. They can sit a long time like this.

These 2 young men were talking with me at the front entrance. They are from the Soleil 17 area of Cite Soleil. They wanted their picture taken so I took a photo.

A couple of other young men wanted their photo taken as well. These guys want a project for the Soleil 17 area and are requesting assistance in obtaining wheelbarrows, shovels, rakes in order that the youth can take care of their area. I told them I would visit their area and try to bring their request to people who may be able to help.

Lukner has a good heart to help the haitian people. He is always looking to help people everywhere he goes.

This is a school building that was demolished by the mayors workers for building code violations as being too close to the road. It is amazing how many buildings were demolished in the Delmas 19 area.

photos - building demolition

The mayor's workers came with a bulldozer and knocked down walls and buildings that were close to the road or on the road. There were several buildings destroyed in the Delmas 19 area. Notice the man sitting on the floor under this unstable building.

On Saturday the mayors' workers knocked down a series of buildings on the Automeca Road off of Delmas 19. We drove by in the morning and the workers were just getting started under the protection of several swat police. We drove over there later in the afternoon and a lot of buildings were destroyed. These small houses were built on the road against walls and the government is now enforcing building codes. People are trying to salvage what they can. Here a man is carrying away some tin.

Automeca Street looks like a demolition zone.

A man is trying to salvage usable cement blocks.

This man works as a journalist and also for the Ministry of Social Affairs. He didn't want me to take this photo. Some people in the area know me and wanted me to take photos to show what happened. Late in the afternoon people were standing or sitting around not knowing where they would live. Pray for those who are poor and cannot easily find accommodations for their families.

photos - various children

Jonel Colo is a cute little boy. He tries to focus his eyes but the pressure on his brain causes them to "sundown".

I gave his mother some antibiotic cream to put on his head sores. His prognosis doesn't look good. He will be at the hydrocephalus evaluations on March 27th when the team from Miami arrives. Keep his mother in prayer. She has a difficult task in looking after him but she loves him.

I went to Bernard Mevs Hospital on Friday and picked up Rose Taina, her mother and Rose's 15 year old sister. Sister Genevieve had asked me to help find a place that would take in Rose. Both Rose and her mother are positive for HIV. The mother is in the HIV treatment program at Bernard Mevs Hospital.

Rose is now staying at Dorothy's mission, Faith, Hope, Love Infant Rescue. She is 21 months old and only weighs 10 pounds. She is currently being tube fed because she doesn't want to eat or drink. Keep Rose in prayer that she could get stronger and be able to get onto the HIV treatment program at Nos Petitis Freres et Soeurs Children Hospital.

The last visitors here left a kite for the children and they were eager to try it out. Kite flying is a favorite past time for young boys here in Haiti. The children used the roof to launch the kite.

haiti update - march 22, 2009

“See, a king will reign in righteousness and rulers will rule with justice. Each man will be like a shelter from the wind and a refuge from the storm, like streams of water in the desert and the shadow of a great rock in a thirsty land.” Isaiah 32:1,2

Hi! This was a busy week with the medical program. On Thursday Dr. Ed brought a medical team to Cite Soleil to hold a clinic. They ended up seeing around 220 people for medical consultations and Ed did some teeth pulling for around 25 people. The people of Cite Soleil are grateful when these clinics are held and we give the Lord thanks for people who are willing to go there. Cite Soleil has a bad reputation and this reputation causes people to avoid the area. We used the Maranatha church to host the clinic, which is located on the main road of Cite Soleil. There were 4 consultation areas plus the registration table at the front of the church and the dental area was located at the back. The church is large so there was no problem seating everyone on the church benches while they waited. We handed out comic book style evangelical tracts to people as they left the clinic. In the afternoon we handed them out to people who were passing in front of the church. One of the young guys who hung out by the church while the clinic was going on wanted to help to distribute them. He’s a tough guy but insisted that he wanted to help. The school kids who walked by on their way home from school all wanted one and it didn’t take long to hand out around 400 tracts. It was fun to watch the children’s enthusiasm as they came and asked for one. Other adults walking down the street stopped and asked for one too.
Jonel Colo and his mother came to the house this week. She came to show me his head. He is one of the babies who already had surgery to treat his hydrocephalus. Unfortunately the surgery didn’t stop his head from continuing to enlarge. He needs a second operation to install a shunt but as is the problem for these babies with the large heads the skin has broken down on both sides of his head and he has 2 large pressure sores. Usually they can’t perform surgery on these children when they have these sores. I told the mother to make sure she comes for the upcoming neurosurgery evaluations at Hopital La Paix on March 27th. The team from Miami will be visiting on the 27th and 28th evaluating new cases and doing post-op checks on children who have had surgery already. From these evaluations a list of surgical patients will be made and the team will return again on April 4th to perform surgeries. Pray for the evaluations that will take place and for the plans being made to hold the hydrocephalus surgeries at Hopital La Paix.
I went with Hosanna to Haitian Social Services (IBESR) with the child that she is looking after to help her find an orphanage to place the child. The child’s father is a gang member. Once she gets a birth certificate made one of the social workers will help to place her in an orphanage.
We are also trying to find an orphanage to help a father place one of his children. The mother died and he can’t raise her and wants to put her up for adoption. I told him what paperwork he needed to have to make this possible and he brought the papers to show me this week. Hopefully next week this girl will be accepted into the orphanage.
Sister Genevieve contacted me about a child that she was trying to find help for. Rose Taina is 21 months old and has already been hospitalized at Bernard Mevs Hospital for malnutrition a couple of times. She was concerned that the child would die if she stayed with her family. The mother has HIV and Rose Taina does as well. The father left the family and the mother is on her own. She does the best she can to provide for her 2 children but is very poor. Sister Genevieve has been helping the family from time to time by giving them food. The mother is enrolled in the HIV treatment program at Bernard Mevs Hospital. They do not have a program for children. The doctors tell the HIV patients that they need to eat before taking their medicine. Someone who is poor cannot always eat if they don’t have money to buy food. The medicine is hard on the stomach if taken without food, so this mother’s solution is not to take the medicine when she doesn’t have food. The prognosis for this mother’s health is not good if she continues to do this. The HIV will not be able to be controlled then. I contacted Dorothy of Faith, Love Hope Rescue Mission and she had a place available for Rose. On Friday afternoon I brought the family over to Dorothy’s and she is now in her care. Rose is very frail. She is 21 months old and only weighs 10 pounds. Because of her malnutrition and HIV she is weak. She is currently on a feeding tube because she doesn’t want to eat or drink. Pray for Rose’s health and for those looking after her. Pray also that she will be accepted into the HIV program at the children’s hospital on Tabarre. Haiti is doing better on control of HIV. In 1996 the infection rate was 6.2% of the population and it has now gone down to 2.2%. International funding of HIV programs allows people with HIV to receive free medications.
This week the mayor of Delmas has been busy enforcing building violations. In the Delmas 19 area workers demolished houses constructed near the road. Police provided security for those workers. A lot of people were affected and are now homeless.
March 22nd is World Water Day. This week in Istanbul, Turkey the 3rd World Water Forum was held. A Water Poverty Index was published in 2002 and Haiti had the distinction of being the worst country in the world for water poverty out of 147 countries. The 10 worst countries on the WPI are all in the developing world – Haiti, Niger, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Malawi, Djibouti, Chad, Benin, Rwanda, Burundi. The best country on the WPI is Finland. Canada is next. The WPI is calculated according to resources, access, capacity, use, and environmental impact. Haiti and the Dominican Republic share the island but their WPI scores are far apart. The Dominican Republic is in 64th place. Reasons given for differences between the 2 countries are that Haiti’s resources are less well developed, with less infrastructure, and the Dominican people have significantly better access to water than there is in Haiti. The Dominican people also score higher in capacity, use and environment.
That’s all the news for today. Happy Water Day and have a good week!

Karen Bultje, Coram Deo

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

videos - Ban Ki-Moon, Bill Clinton visit

The Secretary General of the UN, Ban Ki-Moon and Bill Clinton made a visit to Haiti on March 9th. They are trying to raise awareness of Haiti at the upcoming International Donors Conference in April.

The first video is on "Bill Clinton and Others Trip to Haiti For Support". The video can be accessed at:

The second video is on raising awareness on economic opportunities in Haiti and is entitled "Haiti is at Turning Point. The video can be accessed at:

The third video is on their visit to Cite Soleil. The video can be accessed at:

photos - children

Luvens Francillon is a 1 1/2 year old boy who was born with clubbed feet and deformed toes. Sister Genevieve who is a nurse at Bernard Mevs Hospital called me this week and asked if I could try to find some help for him. We brought him over to see Vanessa of Angel Missions who is visiting Haiti for a couple of weeks.

He is a happy boy who can't stand yet.

Solyvien Favra has a twisted foot caused by an improperly set broken bone. Over the years the deformity has gotten worse.

When he walks the foot twists until he almost ends up walking on the top part of his foot.

Ivona Dessalines is a young girl who is from Gonaives and is living at the orphanage that Sheri, of Christian Light Ministries has. Pray that we can get her paperwork for her so that she can travel to the Shriners Hospital to get this problem treated.

photos - school - life skills, cite soleil

When classes are finished for the day the children learn some "life skills" that can be useful in their own homes and community. The boys are picking up garbage and sweeping and cleaning up the yard.

It makes it fun when they all are working together.

They load up the garbage onto the pickup truck and then help to dump it at the local dumpster.

The girls help by cleaning the dishes.

The people of Ti-Ayiti live near the plugged canal and when the rains come the water flows through this area. Pray that one day the canal is properly constructed so that the people don't have to flee during heavy rain storms.

haiti update - march 17, 2009

“The Lord works righteousness and justice for all the oppressed.” Psalm 103:6

Hi! This past week was a busy week in Haiti for international politicians. On Monday March 9th, the Secretary General of the UN, Ban Ki-Moon and Bill Clinton arrived at the airport. Along Airport Road there were protesting people hoping to catch a glimpse of them. There were a lot of signs saying different things. One sign started out as “Aba Satan” which is translated in English as “down with Satan”. I don’t know whom the people identified as being Satan but the sign also mentioned a request for agricultural programs for the “paysans” (peasants). A lot of people were Lavalas supporters who wanted these politicians to help bring Aristide back to Haiti. There was a common sign and chant mentioned by these people. “Ban Ki-Moon, Ban Aristide”. Ban Ki-Moon pronounced phonetically is the Creole expression for “Give who?” “Ban Aristide” means “Give Aristide”. The people were asking the UN leader and Bill Clinton to bring back Aristide to Haiti. Circulation on airport road was difficult during the time leading up to the arrival of these politicians but afterwards things became normal. They left the next day and then the team from the UN Security Council arrived for a visit of a few days. On Friday afternoon I picked up Gordon Lewis, who is the director of Mission of T.E.A.R.S. and Andy who is from Virginia at the airport. Gordon was here in Haiti to meet with me and orphanages that Mission of T.E.A.R.S. works or may work with. On Sunday afternoon we were driving on Delmas and there was a procession of Canadian Embassy vehicles being escorted by the Haitian police and followed behind by the UN heading to the Canadian Embassy, which is located on the Delmas road. Beverley Oda, who is the Minister of International Coooperation, was in this procession of diplomatic vehicles. She is here from March 15th to the 18th. She will be meeting with Haitian government officials and development partners as a lead-up to the upcoming International Donor’s Conference on Haiti to be held in April. Canada has provided a lot of assistance to Haiti in the past.
It would be good if assistance could be provided to dredging and rebuilding the large drainage canal that runs through Cite Soleil. The section from Airport Road to Rte. Nationale #1 is made of cement and is open and drains clear. Once this canal reaches Cite Soleil though the canal is full and is not constructed of cement but just a channel dug in the dirt. We had a heavy rain downpour Saturday evening. All the rainwater drains through the cement canal and then overflows once it reaches the canal in Cite Soleil. The people living in the Ti-Ayiti section of Cite Soleil had to flee to higher ground. They live next to this plugged canal. 2 children didn’t make it and died. We met with one of the families when we were in Cite Soleil on Sunday afternoon. The mother was sitting on the floor of a tin hut. Talking with her I found out that she is a Christian and is an active church member. This faith is giving her strength now. The uncle explained that everyone was scrambling to move the children away from the running waters but somehow her 2 ½ year old girl was forgotten. One family member assumed the other had taken her. The uncle took a photo out of his wallet showing this girl dressed in her Sunday best. Ti-Ayiti is located at the back of Cite Soleil on the shoreline. The family could not find her body. She was probably washed out to sea. I assured the mother that her daughter is not lost. She is now with the Lord in heaven and as a Christian she will be seeing her daughter again. The family of the other mother who lost her child to the waters sent the mother out to the countryside to be with other family members. The people living in Ti-Ayiti don’t want to live where they are but they have nowhere else to go and are surviving by keeping an eye out for the rains. When the rains come they need to seek shelter in another area until they stop. Pray that one of the development projects being planned and decided will be repairing and improving the canal running through Cite Soleil to the sea. Pray for the people of Ti-Ayiti who need to keep an eye open for the overflowing canal every time there is a heavy rainstorm.
On Monday, Gordon hosted a meeting here at Coram Deo with other missionaries who work with handicapped children and also with the directors of Christian Horizons. This is the first visit of Christian Horizons to Haiti and they are doing an exploratory visit to determine how they can best serve here in Haiti. They are a large mission that works in several countries serving the needs of the handicapped. Pray for their efforts as they discuss and hopefully establish a project here in Haiti. Both Gordon and Andy and the people from Christian Horizons departed this morning.
A military hospital ship from the American Navy, USNS Comfort will be coming to Haiti in April to do operations. We sent in several applications of people who are on our medical search list to the Ministry of Health. They will forward 500 cases to the hospital ship and then surgeons will pick the surgical candidates. Pray for the preparations that are taking place.
Sheri of Christian Light Ministries has a young girl from Gonaives living in her orphanage. She has found medical care for her at a Shriners Hospital in the United States. We are helping out with the paperwork. We are trying to get her “extrait archives” from the archives. In Haiti the birth certificate needs to be followed by this extract in order to be considered legal. The archives are having trouble in giving us this extract because they are having trouble locating the register. Pray the extract will be done and we can then apply for a passport for her.
The people of Paulna’s village did a good thing this past week. An 8-year-old boy was kidnapped in Mariani and the kidnapper brought him out to the village of Bonnett. The kidnapper went to the “hougan” (witchdoctor) and asked him to house the child until a ransom is paid. The “hougan” asked to be paid a large sum of money to do this. Maybe the kidnapper didn’t want to give him much money because the witchdoctor then announced to the people that there was a kidnapper amongst them. The people held onto the kidnapper until the police came and the boy ended up back with his family the same day he was kidnapped. This all happened near the house of an aunt of Paulna’s. It’s good to hear about happy endings!
That’s all the news for today. Have a good week!
Karen Bultje, Coram Deo

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

photos - various

Sterling Bonhomme is a 2-month-old baby girl who has hydrocephalus. Her head started growing within the first month.

Not only does she have hydrocephalus but she was also born with clubbed feet.

Kemly Arisma is an 8-year-old girl who has an eye problem that is causing her to go blind. She currently has a bad skin infection covering her body. Hopefully with the medicine she is on the skin infection will clear up.

Starlancia Ribout is a 6-month-old baby girl who was born with a vaginal malformation. She will probably need surgery in the United States. Pray we can find a hospital that can help her.

photos - various

We almost caught some dinner on the roof the other night. One of the neighbor's rooster got into the yard and the dog really wanted to get him. We were looking forward to eating it because the neighbors roosters usually start to crow around 3am. It managed to get back over the wall.

Pastor Pierre trimmed the trees that had branches hanging over the roof in preparation for the upcoming rainy season. Unfortunately one of the falling branches nicked the corner of the roof edge and we need to now replace a couple of blocks.

These trees will grow back new branches. During the dry season a lot of leaves fall off the trees, sort of like fall.

During rainy season people who build their houses next to ravines sometime run into trouble. These people are living in the side of their house that is still standing. They have lost half their house already to the ravine.

Ravines are also full of garbage. There is no set garbage removal system in Port-au-Prince and ravines are a convenient place for people to throw their garbage in.

haiti update - march 8, 2009

“Do not withhold good from those who deserve it, when it is in your power to act.” Proverbs 3:27

Hi! This week there was a cold front in Haiti causing the temperatures to be a little cooler in the evenings and early mornings. We have also received a few downpours of rain over the last couple of weeks. We collected the rainwater from the roof and our water reservoir is now full again. In the Wharf Jeremie and Cite Soleil area of Port-au-Prince there was some flooding during these downpours. The drainage canals get plugged with garbage and water goes to where it shouldn’t be. The damage in the Gonaives area due to last years hurricane season still has not been repaired. People are getting angry at the government’s efforts at repairing the damage. A video made by World Focus shows the situation in Gonaives where people still are living around the mud. It is entitled “Hurricane mudslides bury Haitian towns”. It can be accessed at
People are angry with the government for not repairing the hurricane damage but the people are also destroying the environment, which causes these conditions. World Focus has another video entitled “Haitians destroy environment in struggle to survive”. This video can be accessed at
Pray that the Haitian people will one day look after their environment. Until then mudslides will continue to be a problem in times of heavy rains.
The Secretary General of the UN, Ban Ki-Moon and ex-president Bill Clinton will be visiting Haiti on March 9th. After they leave a team from the UN Security Council will be making a visit. These people will be assessing the situation here in Haiti. International Crisis Group has issued a report on Haiti entitled, “Haiti 2009: Stability at Risk” This report can be accessed at
A report for the UN Security Council entitled, “Haiti: From Natural Catastrophe to Economic Security” has also been issued. This report can be accessed at
Pray for the upcoming visits. These reports and visit assessments will be used to help determine future direction of the UN mandate here in Haiti. The government of Haiti needs the world’s assistance. If stability can be maintained development can move forward.
More than 100 children and adults who had cleft lips and palettes were seen at the Baptist Mission Hospital in Fermathe. Yvenson Joseph, a 6-month-old baby, received surgery this week to repair his cleft lip. He is doing well. This week the cleft lip/palette surgeries continue at Hopital Albert Schweitzer in Deschapelles.
We helped a missionary from Cayes get a hydrocephalus child registered in the hydrocephalus program this week and also drove her around to get the cat scan done.
The 6-month-old boy with hydrocephalus who was abandoned in Cite Soleil a couple of weeks ago now has a home. Chris took him from Dr. Joey’s clinic and he is now part of His Home for Children. He is now registered at Healing Hands as well and will be a part of the upcoming evaluations. Pray for his health and that an adoptive family can be found for him. He now has a name as well. His name is Joey.
A mother came to the house this week with her 2-month-old baby. Sterling Bonhomme is in a fragile condition because the mother doesn’t breastfeed him or gives him baby formula to drink. We registered him at Healing Hands this week. Next week all the hydrocephalus children will be getting cat scans done. Project Medishare makes it possible for poor parents like Sterling’s mother to be able to get a cat scan done for her child. We give the Lord thanks for their assistance. The neurosurgery evaluations will take place at Hopital La Paix on March 27th and 28th. The neurosurgery team from the University of Miami will be evaluating new cases and doing post-op checks on children who have already received surgery. Hopefully sometime in April the next round of hydrocephalus surgeries will be able to take place. Pray for the preparations being made for the upcoming assessments and future surgeries.
Kemly Arisma, an 8-year-old girl that is going blind came to the house this week with her grandmother. They live in the ravine area on the other side of Delmas 31. She has a bad skin infection covering her entire body. We have some donated antibiotics, so I was able to give her something to treat the infection. Pray the medicine works. We are also planning for her to see an ophthalmologist next week to find out what can be done to save her vision. Her eyesight keeps getting worse over time.
One of the worship leader’s at Pastor Pierre’s church died recently. He was helping to cut branches from a tree in the Kenscoff area and one fell on his head killing him instantly. Lukner said that in a way it was a blessing because he died without suffering and is now with the Lord. Pray for Pastor Pierre’s search for another worship leader. Pastor Pierre was cutting some large branches from a tree at the front of the house on Saturday. We were preparing for upcoming hurricane season by trimming some trees and lopping off branches hanging over the roof. He assured me that he knew what he was doing. I moved the pickup truck to the street just in case. He did a good job. The branch did clip the corner of the roof though and now we have to replace 3 cement blocks on the ledge. Now we can use the branches as fuel for the outside cooking area.
March 8th is International Woman’s Day. Sister Genevieve who works as a nurse at Bernard Mevs Hospital and the other sisters asked me to accompany them to visit Carole in Fond Parisien. These sisters are all from Colombia and don’t speak any English. We communicate with each other by speaking Creole. They told me that when they were planning their excursion to celebrate the International Woman’s Day holiday that it was between Carole’s place and the beach. The sisters voted for Carole’s and then contacted me. Sister Gloria was the driver. We just got out of Croix des Bouquets and she stopped their truck and asked me to drive. She said that she was sleepy and the last time she was like that the truck almost ended up in the ditch at the side of the road. She reminds me of Whoopi Goldberg. They had a good visit at the Love a Child compound and when we got back to Port-au-Prince they said that they would be planning another excursion out to the beach. I wanted to ask them how they could enjoy the beach and water with the habit uniform that they wear but was too chicken to ask. They are fun nuns!
That’s all the news for today. Have a good week!
Karen Bultje, Coram Deo