Tuesday, August 31, 2010

New medical visa candidates

I had 10 new patients visit yesterday. Some were not medical visa candidates, but here are a few that were:

Emerson is one of my ravine patients from Delmas 31. He has a cleft lip.

Widenico is 5 years old and has a simple bowed leg. She gets around on it without much trouble but it still needs to be fixed both to prevent it getting worse in the future and to avoid being ostracized in a society that mocks handicaps or considers them a curse.

Judelka came all the way from Les Cayes to see me. She was born without an anal opening and had a colostomy placed when she was an infant. Last year, a hospital in Haiti created an anal opening for her but it was placed too close to her vaginal opening. Her parents must be exceedingly vigilant about cleaning her because she is at such high risk for vaginal infections and complications. Because of her condition, she cannot attend school and her parents cannot find work easily since one of them must always be with Judelka.

Casimyr has urinary retention due to some sort of obstruction. He has undergone 3 unsuccessful surgeries already. I don't think he wanted his photo taken :)

Mackencia's mother died in childbirth. Only 9 days later, a candle fell on the mat where the baby was sleeping and caught it on fire. Mackencia's feet were burned,
especially her right foot and calf. She received care at the local clinic, but the aunt who was left to care for her after her father abandonned her was afraid that the bandages were contributing to the condition of the foot and removed them. Now, at age 6, Mackencia has a severe burn contracture that prevents her from walking properly. She will need orthopedic and probably plastic surgery to correct her right foot.

Pray that we will find the doctors, hospitals, and host families that we need for these children!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Who's who: Kez

Hello friends of Angel Missions! Vanessa has passed the blog torch to me, so from now on, blog updates will be coming from Haiti. But before I start posting about our everyday life, I wanted to introduce myself and give you a little bit of my story.

My name is Keziah Furth, but everyone calls me Kez. I am a registered nurse originally from Boston, MA, but I have lived in Holland, France and Belgium throughout my childhood and schooling. During my third year of nursing school at Northeastern University, I met a gentleman at my church who was on the board of an orphanage in Haiti. I had always felt a tug to use my foreign language skills and my nursing education in a place that truly needs help so I decided to go take a look at Haiti. It was a simple decision that utterly changed my life.

In the spring of 2006, I visited the orphanage, Hope for the Children of Haiti, in Bolosse, one of the slums of Port-au-Prince. When my short five day trip was over, one of the boys looked at me and asked, "Are you going to forget about us?" I was hooked. The next year I spent my final nursing internship at HFC, 5 months of learning Creole, teaching English, coaching sports, mentoring teens, and falling in love with the Haitian people.

I returned to the US and graduated from nursing school in 2008. Upon graduation, I moved back to Haiti, this time to a home for sick and malnourished infants and toddlers on Delmas 75. It is run by a lady named Dorothy and though it has an official name, everyone casually refers to it as Dorothy's. I helped take care of children with kwashiorkor, meningitis, AIDS, tuberculosis, and general starvation. When possible, Dorothy sends the children back to their families when they are healthy; in many cases, however, the parents are deceased or they disappear and the child just stays.

In addition to my work at Dorothy's, I took over a home health program in a ravine neighborhood in Delmas 31. A woman named Sherrie runs a school in that neighborhood and in an effort to assure that the children coming into her school are the strongest they can be, she had started a small feeding program and a medical program for the families that attend her school. With the assistance of a community health worker named Wesnal, I do rounds in that neighborhood once or twice a week, checking on kids and treating illnesses such as scabies, malaria, diarrhea, bronchitis, ringworm, asthma, allergies, and intestinal worms. I love seeing my patients at their homes, in their environment, and I love the continuity and relationships that I can develop with the families.

Much of my medical knowledge is thanks to a Physician's Assistant named Ed Amos, who I worked with whenever time permitted during my time at Dorothy's. We would see patients side by side so that I could help him with translation and so that he could help with me with medical questions. He also taught me how to perform minor surgery, a skill that has come in very handy with recent events in Haiti.

Creole-speaking medical professionals are few and far between in Haiti, so ever since moving here, I have been called upon frequently to help friends at other ministries with translation or medical clinics. I even got the opportunity to act as a dentist for a week!

Another facet of my life in Haiti is youth group at an English-speaking church on Delmas 75, Quisqueya Chapel. Depending on the time of year, the group ranges from 40 to 100 teens, some of them missionary kids and upper class Haitians, but the majority average Haitian kids. Youth group is frequently the highlight of my week, seeing teenagers who have nothing learn to praise God in the midst of it and learn to offer love and comfort to those around them.

In the spring of 2009, I was helping at the USNS Comfort when I met Vanessa Carpenter. At the time, I knew that I was going to have to leave Dorothy's because they were changing the house set up and my room would no longer be available. Vanessa heard about it and heard me speaking fluent Creole. She instantly offered me a position with Angel Missions and a few months later, I accepted.
That is how I came to be living and working at the Angel Missions office on Delmas 91 from the fall of 2009 until now. I have been able to maintain my work in the Ravine and youth group as well as be helpful to Dorothy's and HFC. In addition, I have worked on behalf of Angel Missions as a coordinator for medical missions conducted by the US Military, I oversee the Haitian side of the medical visa process, I host the Angel Missions medical teams, and I run weekly clinics at Delmas 24 with a crew of young Haitians who I am training to be community health workers.

And that's Kez in a nutshell. Hopefully this gives you enough of a background that you will understand what I'm referring to when I write but feel free to post comments or questions or to email me if something is particularly confusing or interesting. Most importantly, if you are a praying person, use the blog posts as a prayer guide. Angel Missions could not survive as a ministry without the prayers of our friends and I could not survive in Haiti. So in advance, thank you!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Fran and Shesby

I am taking Francesca to neuro doc in Dayton today. she is having a seizure a day. usually falling and hurting herself. probably will change her medication and then he will be ordering an MRI.Fran is in 5th grade in the schools and loving it.Shesby went to PA on Sat and will be there for 3 to 4 weeks while they change her brace. then she will come back and go to third grade.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Megan in her body cast can not stop this girl

Here is a photo of Megan...not good...but I guess she is learning to drag herself in the body cast. she seems to be doing well. goes back to the doc on Sept 8th. Please continue to pray for Megan as she has many surgeries to lengthen her leg. She is always on the go though not even a body cast is going to stop her.

Daphka turns 7

Here is a photo of Daphka celebrating her 7th birthday. she is doing well. Goes on Monday to be fitted for her mold for her prosthesis. may get it in about 3 weeks.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Host Family needed in two parts of the country

Hi Family, We are once again in need of two host families in different areas of the country. The first would be for a family in Memphis TN. We have a young lady coming for Heart surgery. She will need a home for 3-6 months. We expect a speedy recovery. Any one interested can contact Tami Shobe at 419 568 2893. She can walk you through all of the details of becoming a host family.

Second family is needed in Florida Boynton Beach area, for a little boy who will have surgery. His host should only be 12 weeks.

Both children will return to Haiti to their loving families. Please consider helping us. Love V

Monday, August 16, 2010

Please Pray for Marck and Host family

This is from Marcks host family: Please pray for them

I am writing this through tears and with a broken heart. This afternoon Marck saw the Glaucoma Specialist and the news was not good for his right eye. Marck is going to need another surgery (this will be number 4) on Monday (if not sooner). The right eye is very diseased and the pressure needs to be decreased or the eye will only continue to get larger. Sadly, the prognosis for the eye is not good. The doctor will be freezing the diseased areas in the hope of eliminating them. However, he suspects that Marck (at best) will only have peripheral vision. He thinks that by the time Marck is 2 or 3 they will need to remove his eye. Sadly, the odds of this happening to the left eye are about 50/50.Marck has endured so much with these surgeries. This last surgery was difficult on him. He whimpered all night and had a fever. He is just starting to feel better. With all of this comes little sleep. I am out here alone with him and feeling physically and emotionally exhausted. I know that God is in control of this situation and that God is good in all things. However, I am broken hearted for Marck and I am praying for mercy for him and for a miracle. Please pray for us as we try to absorb this news and as we come to terms with what this means for Marck's future.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Need of Host families

Hi There are many of you already signed up to be Host families however we do not have care in your area. Well I am in need of at least two host families to take heart patients in the Memphis area. Please if you or anyone you know of would want to help please contact us.

Applications are on the web site and can be filled in and sent to Tami Shobe. Being a host family means you will be bringing a child into your home for a number of months. Most go home to Haiti within 12 weeks. Other do need to stay a little longer. The child needs a bed but can share a room with the same gender children. For more information please contact Tami at 419-568-2893.

Thank you love V

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Note from Vanessa

To all who read our blog. I am sorry it is so long between postings. We have had many computer problems this summer and even the brand new lap top is still not working right.

I am so busy but trying to keep a handle on it all. We were able to obtain 7 medical visas in July alone. We have another 4 we are waiting on Haitian Passports, and 8 we are working on documentations. AMH and our small staff thank each of you for your prayers, love concern and funds to help us obtain care for these Haitian Children.

I am very behind at posting and will try to do a better job of this month. Please pray as we are looking for two interns from the campus students we work with to help in the Salem office.

Blessings to everyone. love V

Other updates with out photos, Fitho Jeudi made it back to Haiti and his loving family. He had heart surgery in Ohio for a VSD that he has had since birth. The US Doctors could not believe he had made it to 25 years of age they said most children born with a heart as bad as this do not live past 6 months.

Baby Marck, blind from birth had his first surgery within 48 hours of us landing in the US. His second surgery is this week. His first corneal transplant was a success as when he woke up he was looking everywhere and moving his head. Great sign made us all cry.

Judson Candy had his surgery last week (oral) and now is healing and slowly gaining weight. He has been bothered with 2 ear infections and is on his second round of Antibiotics.

We ask for prayers for the children who are waiting for passports to come to the US for their life saving surgery.

Love V

Widlove Surgery Photos

Widlove Update / Before Photos

To all of you who know Widlove and his story. He is doing great. His host parents are in love with him and now after years of trying to have a child. They are pregnant. Praise God from whom all Blessings come.

Widlove has has his first two surgeries. 1) was on his wrist and hand. Dr. Phil and his staff did a great job and his hand is now able to be extended and he can move both his hand and fingers. Therapy is hard but he takes it without complaint and knows that one day he will be able to use his hand again like he did before.

His second surgery was last Friday. This was also a major surgery. The Owensboro team were able to sew Widloves eye shut so that it could properly heal. Here is the story in his host moms words:

Widlove did great today! Slept like a baby, thanks to great anesthesia! His eye has been sewn shut to heal and start construction of eyelids. His balloons are in place and looking good! We are finally home and trying to getting his pain under control. Poor guys has cried alot this afternoon. Some from waking up and the rest from his poor head. He's finally found a comfortable way to sleep and is resting now. Its been a long day for us and my biggest prayer request is for rest and pain relief!Here are some pictures from the surgery

Adriano is through his heart surgery

Adriano now healthy and gaining weight. To look at him now you would never guess just how sick this little man was. Thanks to the wonderful host family and
Staff at St. Christopher's he now will be able to grow, gain weight and rejoin his twin Sister in Haiti We thank the Lord for all of the doors that have been opened for this little one and all of the children of Haiti. Blessing to all who have helped with his care.