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Cherlie and I spent a few weeks in April in the US, visiting with churches and family in the NY/NJ area and attending an annual fund-raising banquet and board meeting in Milwaukee. We visited lots of people and churches, did multiple presentations and enjoyed the comforts of life in the US! The banquet was very successful and we are grateful for the generosity of all who attended and contributed to our ministry in Haiti. We raised funds to pay our clinic staff, hire more employees, purchase our medications and laboratory supplies, continue with our Water and Sanitation community development project and build houses for hundreds more people whose homes were damaged in the hurricane. Many thanks to all who made the banquet a success, including the Banquet Committee Chairperson, Lin McKenney and her committee members Jeanette Schweitzer and Judith Romelus. It was a small but effective committee. THANKS TO ALL OUR DONORS AND SUPPORTERS!!!

FHH’s Founder and Executive Director, Dr. Katie Wolf addresses banquet attendees with an inspiring message

Banquet attendees purchasing authentic crafts at the Haitian Artists Colony

Director of Nursing, Cherlie Severe shares heartwarming patient stories

Long time supporter and auctioneer Steve True encourages bidding during the live auction

 

Now that we’re back in Haiti again, Cherlie and I are catching up on business here. One of the things we always like to do is to tell you about the visitors who come down to help us out in our clinic and our ministry.

We had a wonderful visit in late March from a group from my home church in NJ – Kingston Presbyterian Church. This faithful congregation has been sending visitors our way nearly every year since we’ve been in Haiti. Twice they’ve had their visits cancelled or postponed due to political violence, most recently in January 2017. So, this was a smaller group, but they were a huge blessing and encouragement to us and to one of the local churches in our area.

The group consisted of Janet Rubinstein, who has been on every visit to date and who directed the group, Scott Hodge, David Raduzycki, and Steve Parker from Kingston Presbyterian Church. This was Steve’s second visit, the first being in October 2007. Obviously, a lot had changed since that first visit! Scott and David have been here several times. David’s daughter Emily also made her second visit and brought a good friend, Anna Morris. And, making one of many visits was architect Tom Lee, who designed our residence quarters and who has been instrumental in helping us with our construction projects.

NJ team consisted of Janet and Cherlie in front, Steve, David, Katie, Anna, Emily and Scott (L to R) with Tom taking the photo.

 

Steve Parker and Janet Rubinstein on their first visit to us in 2007

The group was busy during the week helping out in the clinic and doing some construction projects for us. Here are some photos of their hard efforts:

Tom and Scott work on putting together screens for the residence.

 

Steve screwing screen frames together

 

David works in the shop with Viel, our Haitian carpenter

 

Scott works on a shelving unit for the Medical Records room

 

David and Scott puts shelves together

 

Janet helps in the construction by varnishing frames

 

Anna painting the iron windows in the residence

A highlight of the visit was a day spent with one of the local churches in a community near the clinic.   One of the ways in which we are expanding our spiritual ministry at Centre de Sante de Gatineau is to partner local Haitian churches with US churches, so that they can share their faith journeys together and help to build up their respective congregations through mutual sharing and encouragement. We partnered Kingston Presbyterian Church and others who come to visit from the New Brunswick, NJ Presbytery with a local Baptist church pastored by Pastor Noel, who is a good friend of ours. Janet, David, Emily and Anna spent a day with Pastor Noel and his church family, who welcomed the visitors with open arms. Their church was destroyed by the hurricane, but that didn’t deter their enthusiasm for celebrating together the joy of being in the Lord!

The roof is off and the walls of the church were destroyed by Hurricane Matthew

 

The NJ Team meets with the adults in the morning under tarps

 

The tin roof is gone but the trusses remain

 

David presented a new Creole Bible to Pastor Noel

 

Emily and Anna direct the children in a game during an afternoon VBS session

We want to thank the team for their dedication to us and to our ministry in Haiti and for their willingness to come visit us so regularly. We loved having them and look forward to the next visit from members of the New Brunswick Presbytery churches.

YOU ARE AWESOME!!!

 

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On April 23, 2016, Friends for Health in Haiti (FHH) celebrated the 10th year anniversary of our organization at our annual banquet at the Wisconsin Club in Milwaukee.  We were honored to have close to 200 people in attendance.  Through our silent auction, ticket sales, live auction, sale of Haitian crafts and help from our generous banquet attendees as well as other donors, we were able to raise over $50,000!  All of the funds raised will be used to directly support our medical ministry in Jeremie, Haiti.  Many thanks to the Banquet Planning Committee with its chairperson Lin McKinney, advisor Barbara Tyler, banquet underwriters, table sponsors and table captains for making the banquet a successful and enjoyable event.

Keynote speakers at the banquet were founder and Executive Director Dr. Catherine Wolf and her co-worker RN Cherlie Severe.  They shared the history of Friends for Health in Haiti and the inspired journey they followed in building this exciting ministry from vision to reality.  Attendees also heard from FHH’s new Director of Development and Milwaukee resident Judith Romelus, herself Haitian-born with a burden to serve her people.

Similar to previous years, ALL money raised at this wonderful event will go to support the outpatient clinic in Gatineau and our vital community development programs. We are grateful for the generous support of all who made this our most successful banquet!

Thank you!

Click here to see photos from the banquet!

In our blogs, we like to highlight the visitors and groups that come to work with us in Haiti.  They are an important part of our ministry here, since they help us to offer additional services to our patients and the communities around the clinic.  We are appreciative of the supplies and medications that they bring to us as well, since it helps to reduce our cost of operations here at the clinic.  Kudos to our visitors!

Nurse and team leader Kathy English brought down another group from Avera in South Dakota in March.  The group included Dr. Scott Peterson, a family physician who was on his second visit, and nurses Miranda Doss, Nicole Goodroad and Joy Gebhard.  They saw lots of patients, did a lot of Pap smears that they took back to the US for analysis, did patient teaching and helped give out gifts to our patients.  Here they are in action:

Here is Joy giving a dress and Beanie baby to a young girl who came to the clinic with her Grandpa

Here is Joy giving a dress and Beanie baby to a young girl who came to the clinic with her Grandpa

Nicole found a friend in one of our young patients. They played Frisbee together in the clinic yard!

Nicole found a friend in one of our young patients. They played Frisbee together in the clinic yard!

Kathy English shows off another donated dress with its proud new owner

Kathy English shows off another donated dress with its proud new owner

Scott, Miranda, Nicole and Joy taking a break outside the clinic.

Scott, Miranda, Nicole and Joy taking a break outside the clinic.

The Avera team leaves their mark on the beach near our home in Jérémie

The Avera team leaves their mark on the beach near our home in Jérémie

REMEMBER THOSE KNEE INJECTIONS?

Once again, we were blessed by having a visit from former FHH Board President Dr. Greg VonRoenn and fellow internist Dr. Dan Tanty.  One of the highlights of their visits to us is the opportunity for us to offer our patients steroid knee injections for arthritis pain.  The doctors bring with them the expensive injectable steroid and we have patients come in to the clinic specifically to get the injections.  It is a huge service to the patients and provides them with some short-term relief of what is sometimes very debilitating pain.  When rural Haitians can’t walk and climb hills, they can’t fetch water or harvest food to cook for themselves.  So, arthritis is a significant illness down here and one with limited treatment options.  If acetaminophen and Muscle Rub can’t help the pain, sometimes knee injections will!

Greg injects a patient’s knees while Dan assists. They made quite the team!

Greg injects a patient’s knees while Dan assists. They made quite the team!

Greg VonRoenn checks the pulse on one of the clinic patients

Greg VonRoenn checks the pulse on one of the clinic patients

Dan Tanty writes up the chart of the man whose knees were injected with steroid medication.

Dan Tanty writes up the chart of the man whose knees were injected with steroid medication.

Greg Dan Cherlie

Greg, Dan and Cherlie at the end of a hard week of work in the clinic

 

REMEMBER THE ANNUAL FHH FUND-RAISING BANQUET!!!

We want to remind everyone of our annual fund-raising banquet that is being held at the Wisconsin Club in Milwaukee on Saturday evening, April 23, 2016.  Complete details here!  This year we will be celebrating the 10th anniversary of Friends for Health in Haiti, so if you are in the area, please do come help us celebrate this important milestone in our development.  And if you can’t be with us in person, you can share with us in spirit and in prayer!  The Lord has accomplished much in these past ten years and we look forward to what is to come in the future!

 

 

The seventh annual Friends for Health in Haiti banquet was held at the Wisconsin Club on April 25, 2015. Two hundred and forty one people attended and were treated to a wonderful evening of food, fellowship and fun! This year’s gala event included Haitian craft items in the Haitian Artist Colony, a silent auction with electronic bidding, a new Spinning Wheel activity, oral auction led by the wonderful Steve “the Homer” True and a “Sustaining the Journey” funding opportunity that allowed guests to help fund the ongoing activities of our medical clinic in Gatineau.

Dr. Catherine Wolf gave an update of the past year’s activities at the clinic and showed slides of the newly completed lab/xray/pharmacy building and second story residence quarters. The new clinic is functioning well and there are record numbers of patients being serviced by Dr. Wolf, nurse Cherlie Severe and their Haitian staff. Guest speaker Chip Duncan showed some wonderful slides and video of some of his photographic work worldwide and encouraged banquet attendees to help have an impact on those in need around the world.

We offer our thanks to the Banquet Committee with its chairperson Lin McKinney, advisor Barbara Tyler, FHH board members, underwriters, table sponsors and captains, auction item donors and all of the generous donors and banquet attendees who made this the most successful banquet ever! The money raised at this event will go directly to help the people who we serve in the clinic and in our community development programs. Thanks for helping us make a difference in the lives of thousands of Haitians in need!

Here are some photos from the wonderful banquet:

Guests mingle and enjoy the offerings of the Silent Auction, Haitian Art and Spinning Wheel, while catching up with each other.

Guests mingle and enjoy the offerings of the Silent Auction, Haitian Art and Spinning Wheel, while catching up with each other.

Guests took home a lot of great Haitian art.

Guests took home a lot of great Haitian art.

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Guests enjoyed some lively bidding on our exciting Silent Auction items.

Dr. Katie Wolf updating guests on the progress of the clinic.

Dr. Katie Wolf updating guests on the progress of the clinic.

Guests view a presentation and see the impact of their generosity in the faces of those we are helping in Haiti.

Guests view a presentation and see the impact of their generosity in the faces of those we are helping in Haiti.

Guest speaker Chip Duncan shares his most recent work around the world.

Guest speaker Chip Duncan shares his most recent work around the world.

Always a fun time, auctioneer Steve

Always a fun time, auctioneer Steve “the Homer” True gets the crowd going with his signature style.

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