I know I just wrote a few days ago, but so much is happening I just had to give you an update!
First of all, we finished up our clinic today. In 4 days we saw 400 patients!!! We saw a LOT of skin infections. Almost 90% of the people who came in had festering wounds, scabies, sores, and other skin complications. We are afraid some of the kids were already septic. It is so dangerous for them to have all of these open and oozing spots on their skin. ESPECIALLY with the tent city conditions. Diseases are spreading like wild fire! We saw hundreds of lung infections! A lot of bronchitis and many kids had bad ear infections. None of the people we treated have any other way to see a doctor. They are living in such pain. It was truly heartbreaking. Case after case after case of worms, oozing sores, and infections. Please pick up some bars of anti-bacterial soap for the tent cities next time you go to the store!
All of our students were given a full exam. Only 5 students, out of 140, did not need medicine for skin infections, lung infections, or ear infections. I cannot stress enough how terrible these tent cities are for the health of our families!!!!! Last year, during physicals, we only gave meds to about 20 of 140 children.
Things around the house are going well. The teams have been GREAT and we are getting so much accomplished. We are feeding 200 families a week with shipment supplies and rice and beans. Today we distributed food to 50 families in Les Bours. This afternoon, we are organizing what is left of the supplies and playing with the kids. Jivenson got his first tooth this week! He also rolled across the room all on his own! Pierreline and Keke are getting along like sisters...hugging, dancing, and fighting over toys. Mika is getting SO big SO fast I can practically watch her grow! Guerlik has been giving me the play by play on what Keke and Pierreline are doing at all times. David has been going to English school several days a week and is enjoying it! Alex is...well Alex. He loves that it has been raining in the afternoons so he can play soccer in the rain out on the driveway. Naika has been helping me and playing with the girls. I am so excited that she will be moving to our new property with us!
Tuesday, after I dropped a team off at the airport' I was heading back to the school and found a boy laying in the street. Jean and I were driving around the three hands statue when I saw this boy with his head and arms in the road and his legs sprawled across the sidewalk. At first, I thought he was dead. I watched as tap-taps barely missed his head and hands. I was holding my breath as each truck flew past him. People were stepping over him on the busy sidewalk like he was another piece of trash. Police officers were standing at their post just watching him, making no effort to help in any way. I asked Jean to stop the truck. He told me, "No, I think that boy must be crazy in the head" I said," I don't care how crazy he is, we have to see if he is still alive." So we turned around on a one-way road and made our way back to boy. He was unconscious and dirty from head to toe. We tried to pull him out of the street so he wouldn't get hit. As we sat him up, he started coughing up blood. He was too weak to sit up. He just collapsed over his legs. He was crying and moaning in pain....and then he passed out again. He has to be only 14 or 15 years old. There was a homeless lady sitting on the curb and I asked her to watch him while I went to get a doctor. Jean and I literally FLEW to the clinic, grabbed Amanda, a nurse who came with Gail, and FLEW back to the three hands statue. He was still laying in the same position that I left him with people walking all around him. Praise God he was still breathing! I paid a man to help us lift him in the back of the truck. (No one wanted to touch him) Jean helped me tell the police that we were going to take him to hospital and to tell the family if they came looking for him. The officer said he had no family, he lived on the streets, he was crazy, and possibly had epilepsy. Apparently, he had a seizure and fell in the street.Since he was mentally handicapped and a street boy, no one wanted to help him. The officer advised me not to take him to the hospital because I would have to find someone to stay with him, pay for his care, and bring him meals each day or they wouldn't let him in the door. So, we found a guy on the street who said he would stay with him (hoping the crazy white girl was going to pay him well) and we took off for the hospital. Unfortunately, the hospital would not admit him. They were a trauma only hospital. By this time I was an hour late to pick up my next team at the airport. We took the boy and the caretaker back where we found them (but away from the road of course). I gave the guy money to buy them both food and asked him to meet us with the boy at the hand statue the next day. Last night, we found a hospital who would take him in! Brothers of Charity in Cite Soleil.....NOW I need to find the boy again. He had fallen down a lot. He had scars on his body and staples in his head. I hope we can find him before his next seizure. He was in terrible condition. I just kept thinking, if I was laying in the road, I pray that you would pick me up everytime! If my child was laying in the road, I pray that you would pick him up everytime! He is someone's baby boy! And even if his parent's aren't alive, he is God's child. I was reminded of the good Samaratin story. The police stood and watched and his own people walked over his body. We only have one vehicle and we needed it every minute of the day. We had no time to pick up this boy and take him to the hospital. But what if we hadn't?
I often go through life in such a rush. I'm always thinking about the next thing(s) I have to get done. But some things are worth making time for. ....like people. If we go through our life just trying to accomplish "things", at the end of the day, how many of them really mattered? How many of them had eternal value? How many of them brought a smile to the Father's face? Unfortunately, often times my answer is, none. Dear Lord, may that not be the case anymore. May my heart and mind be more concerned about the things YOU have for me than the things I think I need to accomplish. Amen.
Please pray for our dear friend who lives in the streets. Pray that he is safe and that we will find him soon. Pray that he will feel the love and the peace of Jesus. Pray for all of those living in tent cities, and specifically our families in Les Bours. Pray for the diseases and infections that are spreading. May God heal them in mighty and miraculous ways! Pray for God to continue to renew our strength each morning as we wake up to serve others for His glory!