Monday, February 21, 2011

Haitian Cell Phone

Dear Friends and Supporters:
It Only Seems Like I'm constantly asking help for Haiti! My 2 trips are close together this year, January and March, so, indeed, I was just there, and here I'm writing this sort of note... the one I write a few weeks before a trip, asking for support, again. But: If I should stop doing this, people need to stop encouraging me.
This Sunday, after I saw my patients at the hospital, I was wondering how to start this blog entry. I mean, it's trip 5, and I am in deeper than ever. I bought a Haitian cell phone, for heaven's sake...I plan to do Haiti work regularly if my dear husband, my practice, my health, and my donors and supporters can stand it...and somehow it's still working. I think it's God at work.

As I reflected on how do you ask for support repeatedly-( prayer and kind words are abundant and free, money seems a bit less so for normal humans..) ..I stopped in my office for a brief stint at my desk. A serenely quiet building, on Sunday morning, lovely to get things done...and on my desk is an envelope with a check from a person I do not know, in another state, for $100, and just a note; "for Haiti!". My God. And I hadn't even sent out this blog entry yet. I am so humbled that somehow, there is a net, a tribe, some strange collection of friends out there that wish this work to continue. I am humbled, but encouraged. I guess I just ask.

My Trip Expenses: I donate my vacation time. Loudoun Community Midwives pays my airfare. The remaining trip cost, $600/trip, for food, lodging, translators, and travel in-country, comes from donors. Checks to Midwives for Haiti memo'd "Wendy Dotson trip" can be sent to my office ( I will mail them in) or directly to MFH at 7130 Glen Forest Ave. Suite 101, Richmond, VA 23226-3754. (Midwives for Haiti is a tax-deductible registered 501-c-3). I need to know what's sent in, to track if/when needs are met.Over & above the $600: even $10 donations are great; I can buy Klorfasil clean-water units for Naran. 1 bucket prevents cholera for a family for a year. Since it's an informal project of my own, that money must go to me directly, and can be sent to my office: Wendy Dotson, 19465 Deerfield Ave, #205, Lansdowne, VA 20176.

Another way to give is to visit Finnegan's Irish Pub in Ashburn Village, for lunch, dinner, a drink or a snack, and make a donation-they are doing a MFH fundraiser for Trip 5! Fill out a donation form so I know you came! (It's even possible I would be there after work having a beer...!)

Trip 5: Non-monetary needs:
Prenatal Vitamins and Iron tablets-always, always needed.
Cytotec (misoprostol)- folks with Rx ability, take note. Only costs about $48/100; goes a long way)
Receiving blankets
If you wish to donate a specific type of item or for a specific amount, contact me ( 703-726-1300) and we can decide together what to get. We need a bunch of equipment and supplies for the birth centers.
Most folks who read this blog already know what I do, but I'll post soon about actual Haiti activities. That stuff is far more fun to read than this shameless-begging-for-money-to-do-it...but the short agenda for trip 5 is:

Equip, orient Haitian midwife, and prepare to open small birth center in village of Trianon. ( Buy beds, mattresses, meet w/ village priest, get "medical waste" garbage pit dug, storage shelves built, check on power, water, etc.)
Help teach/train Class 4 students as needed
Help with mobile clinics-- hoping to try out new pink "Jeep La".
Teach & expedite family planning services/ methods.
Help with whatever Nadene and the MFH board need-- it evolves a lot!.

My Haitian Cell Phone Number is 509-3-118-6595. Call me sometime, March 11-19,and I'll tell you what's new and hopeful in Haiti. I am at the point of not just hoping, but depending on my American friends to help with this work. In a very difficult and damaged place, hope is still alive! My Haitian friends certainly don't stop hoping for help. In a recent facebook chat, my Haitian friend Theard, working at the UN office, in Hinche, said "It is so great that you were able to get the 40 buckets for Naran. They have 550 people, and now more of them keep asking me if you will bring more so they can get one." Well, okay. We'll see what we can do.
Hey- I bought the cell phone! You all have proved, over & over, that you care about this work and support it! And I thank you from the heart.