Sunday, February 12, 2017

On Mon, Jan 2, 2017 at 6:15 PM,
Bonswa from Haiti!
Our team landed safely in Port Au Prince this afternoon and had a very smooth exit from the airport. Everything was very well organized and all of our bags made it with us! The ride out of the capital was invigorating and we had to opportunity to see the sun set over the mountains of Haiti. We arrived at Mountain Top Ministries and were greeted with a fantastic meal. Everyone is just now getting settled in for the evening and preparing for our first day of clinic tomorrow. As the internet can be a bit unpredictable here, we'll try to send out an email update at the end of every day, but don't worry if you don't hear from us right away. Also, as mentioned, these emails are sent to one designated person for each volunteer as it takes quite a bit of time for the emails to go through (Just getting online now took about 15 minutes....ah, 90's dial-up nostalgia). Please forward these emails to any other family members or loved ones who also want to keep up with our adventures in Haiti (you were chosen as the responsible family member, who would be up for the task, you got this). For now, I think we're all looking forward to a restful night's sleep after today's travels, and likely already looking forward to our first Hatian bucket showers...
Until tomorrow,
The Little By Little Team (written by Tracey Lynn)

On Tue, Jan 3, 2017 at 5:36 PM,
Our team successfully finished our first day of clinic! We saw quite a bit of patients (the tallies are still being totaled) and encountered a variety of interesting cases. Lots of us braved the walk to and from clinic, and encountered many friendly locals, who we were able to "Bonjou" and "Bonswa" along the way (we also encountered some goats, chickens, and a cow). We have just finished dinner, and many of us are experiencing our first Haitian bucket showers, which means that many of us are likely looking forward to our first shower upon arriving home. Everyone is settling into their roles in the clinic so well, and adapted to how the clinic is run very quickly. We'll spend this evening prepping for clinic tomorrow, reviewing interesting cases that we saw at clinic, and unwinding from the busy day. Hopefully the roosters will wait to start crowing until the morning.
Until tomorrow,
The Little By Little Team (written by Tracey Lynn)

On Wednesday, Jan 4, 2017 at 6:02 PM,
Bonswa Friends and Family!
Today was a very busy second day of clinic! We tallied up yesterday's patients and found that we saw 237 patients, and while we're still counting, we know that we saw over 230 patients today! That's almost 500 Haitian patients that we have impacted in just the last two days, and we still have three more clinic days to go! Another huge moment today was that Willem got a generator, and with the help of Brian Walsh and Alex Ogdon, we now have electricity in the clinic, and the providers are able to see their patients under the lights! It makes such a huge impact, especially for those who are not near windows and have been utilizing flashlights for exams and procedures. There's also a light in the pharmacy, which means that by the end of the day, the team in the pharmacy doesn't have to squint in the light to count pills. It's amazing the things you take for granted back home that become such a huge hurdle to obtain out here. Everyone here is doing so well. Many of us felt that the walk up the mountain to clinic was a little less taxing today, and hopefully will continue to get better every day. Quite a few of us have also continued to brave a "goat path" on our route home. It's always interesting to see us struggle a bit walking up, while Haitian women walk up and down the goat path with large buckets on their heads like they were simply walking down the street. We're also an amusing spectacle for the local children, who like to watch us from their windows and proudly say "hello" or "bonswa" as we pass by. We all just finished a fantastic dinner and will be sitting down shortly to go over the events of the day and plan for tomorrow.
Good night!
The Little By Little Team (written by Tracey Lynn)

On Thursday, Jan 5, 2017 at 6:22 PM,
Phew! Another busy day in clinic today! We have now seen over 700 hundred patients in our time here in Haiti. We encountered many patients today with complex and unique issues and this team works amazingly together! There are so many levels of expertise among everyone here that we all seem to work like a well-oiled machine. For those who are on their first adventure in Haiti, they have learned their roles so quickly an are adapting so well to the way things work in the clinic. Our team members consist of providers, scribes, a very busy occupational therapist, a pharmacist (a two "on the fly" learning pharmacy techs), a nurse educator, a wound care team, a supply team and runners, scribes, and our two electricians (Brian and Al brought light to the church today). When the lights were reset today and we briefly went without overhead lights, I think all the providers were reminded how impactful having lights can be. We also met a few children from Gramothe today, who tried to learn all our names on the walk up to clinic, and were calling some of us by name on the way down (they mostly just remembered the name of the 6'5" man since he stands out in the crowd...). All of the locals are so friendly and great us with smiles every day. Those we wait hours (and in many cases, days) to see us in the clinic, are just happy to get even five minutes of our time and have their concerns heard. I'm sure I can speak for all of us when I say this week has been very rewarding, and we still have two more clinic days left. Everyone is still safe, happy, and well.
The Little by Little Team (written by Tracey Lynn)

On Friday, Jan 6, 2017 at 6:45 PM,
A Big Haitian Bonswa to you all!
This team is cranking! At the beginning of every clinic day the team gathers with all of the interpreters as a group and we sing a song and say a prayer, led by one of our amazing interpreters (also a dear friend aka Mouse for those of you who have been here before). Sue mentioned that we should get cranking today, and our dear friend finished the devotional by telling us, "Let's get cranky!" It was an amusing way to start the day. The interpreters have been so amazing this week. They help us to understand the culture here and connect us to our patients in a way we would never be able to do without them. They are kind, patient, and incredibly smart. They have been such a joy to work with this week. Today we saw over 300 patients in the clinic. That means that in 4 days, our team has helped over 1000 Haitians, touching (and in many cases, saving) so many lives means the world to this team. Brian, Al, and Tim have also been hard at work prepping the trade school that is in the process of being built. There is a school near the clinic that educates children through high school, but many don't have plans after school. This will allow for further education for so many Haitians, creating skills and jobs. Tim, our architect, has been able to use his expertise to help create the plans for the trade school. Ultimately, education is what will have the greatest impact on the future of Haiti. It's pretty amazing to be witness to the opportunities being created. Everyone has just finished dinner and is gathering for discussions about the day (and sharing of snacks and treats).
Last day of clinic tomorrow!
The Little by Little Team (written by Tracey Lynn)

On Saturday, Jan 2, 2017 at 6:15 PM,
Good Evening From a Very Productive Team,
We have officially completed our last day of clinic. During this week we have seen over 1,200 patients. Many of these patients had critical wounds and were seen earlier in the week. Their wounds were cleaned and they were given medication and brought back today to see how they are healing. Our wound team, Nancy and MaryAnne were incredibly busy today, caring for people with often limb and life-threatening wounds. Seeing over 1,200 patients also means that our pharmacy team, led by Lea and Julie, filled over 1,200 prescriptions this week! That wouldn't have been without the help of the stock room team, who were counting out pills as fast as they were being prescribed. There has been so much healing happening this week, and it's thanks to every single person on this team. This clinic is now quiet, the pharmacy is stocked, and it will wait for the next team of medical volunteers to open it's doors again. Tomorrow our group will join the local members of Gramothe at Sunday church and have a chance to see the school and trade school. In the meantime, we will continue to enjoy a relaxing evening of games and conversation. Tomorrow is our last day in Haiti!
Goodnight, The Little by Little Team (written by Tracey Lynn) 
On Sunday, Jan 8, 2017 at 5:57 PM,
Today is our last day in Haiti! We joined the locals of Gramothe today for Sunday church, and it was such a great and energetic experience. Afterward, we were led through the mountain town and received a little tour, of the neighborhood up close. This allowed many of us to get a glimmer of what our patients experience on a daily basis (Tiny stone homes with 1-2 rooms, outdoor bathrooms and kitchens, and if you're lucky-a cistern). We also met the village midwife today, who has delivered more children than he can count, and walked us through his steps to delivering a baby on the mountain (or a cow). The Charles family, Willem, Beth, and David (Stephan is in the states this week) has made sure that we were safe and well fed throughout the week, and have been such gracious hosts. We have had a lot to celebrate this week, including the amount of people's lives we were able to impact, AND two birthdays! This afternoon has been about relaxing and enjoying each other's company before we all depart for home tomorrow. Beth is currently gearing us up to play the annual game, Garbage, and eat some birthday cupcakes. This week seems to have gone by so quickly, and there are many things we will all miss about Haiti and our experiences here, but I'm sure everyone is also eagerly looking forward to a real shower, and more importantly, talking to you all. Thank you all so much for lending your loved ones to this wonderful cause. I'm sure you'll be receiving calls and texts from them once we hit U.S. soil. Everyone sends their love!

Orevwa, The Little by Little Team (written by Tracey Lynn)

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