MMRC Haiti Update – 07/20/2010

Posted: July 29, 2010 in Uncategorized

I’ve received quite a few hints/suggestions that I update my blog since it has been a while. I just want to preface this blog entry by saying that it is 11:30pm and I’m laying on my bed-o-pallet/mattress and it has been a long day. I’m posting this entry from my blackberry so please forgive the typos and rambling you are about to experience.

With that being said here goes nothing.

Over the last 2 weeks we have accomplished a tremendous amount of work thanks to some killer people that have been helping us. Heather Walsh a.k.a. “crazy brookyn broad” was with us for 2 weeks. I love this girl not only because she is completely nuts but she has a heart as big as her butt.

Man this girl has a huge heart.

Heather is an ER nurse from Brooklyn who doesn’t take anyone’s crap, will do absolutely anything to help someone in need, will sacrifice all personal comforts to share what she has, but most importantly, she always teaches people how to do things the right way. She has been working closely with Jeanne and Ellen and has taught them so many things. I loved watching these three girls in action together because I knew there was nothing to worry anout. Heather went home today and her presence is greatly missed.
Pigpen was back for a week and it was so good to see her. We picked up right were we left off and she was her spunky, outgoing, meeting planning self. While at home she got a tattoo of some of the graffiti on the wall of the general hospital and her artist did a great job. The best part was that within 2 hours of being in PAP she was sweaty and grimey and had hit the ground running.

Mike Hague is still with us and is doing a lot of good work here. It’s nice to have another driver and he has helped tremendously with his connections. Currently Mike is working on getting us supplies that are so greatly needed.

Jeanne and Ellen. Can I just say that I love these girls. I’ll admit that when they first got here I was a little concerned about throwing them to the wolves but they have surpassed any challenge they’ve been faced with. They’ve been working with Megan Coffee quite a bit in the TB tents and doing an amazing job.

What I’m about to say may be a little embarrasing to them, but it wouldn’t be right if I didn’t tell this story. On either the first or second day here I had them practice starting IV’s on me becuase you don’t get a lot of hands on time while in nursing school. I have to admit they were very professional in setting everything up and were not hesitant at all about shoving a needle in me. Jeanne went first and stuck me in the wrist per my request. Maybe I should have let her decide. She was poking and prodding trying to get my vein and when she couldn’t Heather stepped in to show her. At first Heather couldn’t find it but what she did do that was a lot of fun was to pull the IV halfway out to try a different approach. Now as fun as that sounds imagine having a string of sandpaper pulled out of your arm. After a little cursing, and Heather laughing at me, I politely asked her to let Jeanne try again. So, the IV is still in me, Heather is laughing, I’m trying to relax and Jeanne is now going on a fishing trip in my arm. All of a sudden I feel a jolt of electricity shoot down my hand. It was really unexpected and that’s the point that I asked Jeanne if she wouldn’t mind stopping and trying again later. She didn’t get frustrated and I knew she could do it but I can be a hard stick at times.

Now, on to Ellen. We go to my right hand for this one. After a bit we got the right amount of tightness on the tourniquet and she went for the hand. Impressively she got me on the first stick. Shockingly when blood started to flow out of the IV in my hand she grabbed her cheeks and said “oh crap”. Now, I’m no nurse but if someone is bleeding I think you’re supposed to put pressure on the patient not the nurse. Smooches Ellen. I reached over and put a finger on the vein just above the IV sight and stopped the bleeding. Ellen jumped right back in a setup the line and made sure it didn’t infiltrate.

Back to Jeanne. It turns out I had another good hand she could use and so she did. She got the IV in my hand right away on this one and I really didn’t even feel it. So now I’m looking like a pin cushion but I have the priviledge to say that I was their first sticks in Haiti.

Like I said these girls are great. I went to get them from the TB tents today and there they were. Each of them with their own patients sticking in IV’s without any problems and on the first try. Overall these girls have really been working hard, they learnvery quickly and I’m proud that they are part of MMRC.

Tuwanda is with us for another 10 days and it is so good to see her back again. She’s a doctor from Chicago who is very good and really loves what she does. She’s been to a couple of orphanges already and will probably be helping in the clinic at the general tomorrow.

The other big news is that LP is back from France. He got in last night and I could feel a huge weight being lifted from shoulders. Speaking of shoulders, he got a tap tap tattooed on his shoulders. I’ll get some photos of it and put it on the blog soon. He put on a few pounds that he desperately needed and is in great spirits.

So that’s the update on the people with us. Now on to what we’ve been doing.


Nothing yet. Marc Luben has been doing everything he can but it seems that everything is at a stand still. I receive daily updates on the progress but it seems that since it is run by nuns they are untouchable. I do know that the case was presented directly to President Preval but nothing is being done. I wish there was a way to show the world what is going on here and how our hands are tied in this matter. I’m hoping that some of the major networks will hear about this and contact us to help expose what is going on.

I took 3 days off last week and jumped over to Miami. My original plan was to relax but I ended up working about 18 hours a day on MMRC. Granted, it wasn’t as relaxing but I did get a lot of things done that were weighing heavily on my mind. While I was gone Pigpen, Heather and Mike ran the show and did an amazing job. When I got back on Saturday it was great to see that they had organized all of the supplies, picked up 2 pallets of food and disributed a boat load of supplies.

Overall things are humming along quite well. Michelle and I went and assessed a camp in Carefour today. It looks like they need a functioning water supply and medical teams. We’ve also been doing transfers in the pickup and have had various teams come to the compound to pick up supplies.

There is one more thing I want to say before I pass out from exhaustion.

I want to send out a huge thank you to Patricia Aquette for an amazing donation she made. It turns out that our rental agreement on our truck expired and we were going to be without a vehicle. When I was chatting with Patricia about her projects this came up and she donated $4000 to us to buy a truck. We are so grateful to her for this because now we can keep doing our work here.

It’s thanks to all of you that donate to us that we can survive out here. Funds are dangerously low and we need your help. I’m working on getting to NY for a few weeks to try and raise money because unless a miracle comes through we will have a truck but no place to sleep. If you can donate to our group it would be so appreciated. I just changed hosting service for the website so it may be down for a little bit. If you want to make a donation please email me and let me know.

That’s what I’ve got for now but I will write more frequently. If you have want to donate to MMRC plesse do so. Our mission here is very impotant and we need to stay here to help make a difference. Please Donate.

Ok everyone, my eyes are crossed becuase I’m so tired. Be good out tthere and send money please.


  1. It is 4.33 and I just woke up because my husband is on his way back to Haiti. Can’t sleep and saw this post. I had to laugh so hard … usually I cry when my husband leaves to return to Haiti but this time, thanks to Paul’s funny post, I for once didn’t. Thank you! And keep that spirit!!! I kow it gets hard sometimes.
    Jeanette of Haiti Reads

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