You never know what is going to happen in life. I was just sitting here watching the coverage of Haiti- feeling helpless and heart-broken, while also trying to recover from my trip to Rwanda, Uganda & the DRC… when a call came in from my friend Aaron. Aaron & I worked together at www.hodr.org last winter doing hurricane relief work in Gonaives, Haiti- i have blogged about that here in the past. Aaron is a bit of a Haiti connector/conduit… he speaks Creole, has many friends that he keeps in contact with back in Gonaives, and he also has this finger on the pulse of what is going on in the disaster relief world. Aaron has now hooked up with a medical group, www.projectmedishare.org who sends doctors down to Haiti. Many doctors from across the states have joined them on the groud in Port au Prince as soon as they could following the recent 7+ quake. Aaron recruited me to join him in giving the medical teams logistical support on the ground. He just arrived to PAP today & said that now aid is streaming in (the port is fixed!) they need some definite assistance in getting all the goods & people organized– enter: logistics! I will blog & update from there while I can.
above: Myself, Jeanene & Tamara- girls i worked with last year in Gonaives, Haiti. Tamara will be joining us in PAP- great to reunion with her and Aaron!
You may be asking how i can do this- well good question & I hope to answer a few of your Qs while also busting my butt packing & prepping for my flight toMiami tomorrow. WORK: yes, i do have a day job- but i also have saved up personal days, have a very compassionate boss with a big heart, and fortunately the ability to adjust my schedule in times of personal need. VERY FORTUNATE- I KNOW!
above: when Aaron is not kicking arse, hauling rubble & saving lives, he is pole dancing at an auto parts store in Gonaives…
So the deal is we each need to bring every single thing we will eat, consume or need with us- that includes all water & food- we can assume that we will have nothing there- not electricity or a water source. for days i have been obsessing on how i am going to take down enough drinking water- looking into filtering systems, etc. Food- i am going to be pretty sick of balance bars & nuts in due time. Another thing is sleeping- where will be sleeping? I don’t know… my own tent. I am used to packing lite but this is just the opposite- i do not want to forget one thing.. and am not used to dressing for rain and also hard physical work- but it will all come together by Monday AM, have no fear… I do not want any of this to take away the focus from the utter terror that the every day Hatian has had to endure- even before this earthquake happened. To be slightly inconvenienced (or at least that is the perception at home) is really is no big deal & puts many things in perspective. In some ways, i wish everyone had to do this- just to appreciate what we have & have more patience & understanding for those who have been dealt a raw deal. We are really lucky in life here in the N. America/Europe/Aust/NZ.. As far as I’m concerned it is our duty to serve others who have not been born into such relative wealth & luxury.
above: One of my favorite kids in Gonaives, New Years Eve 08/09.