Local church seeking donations for Haiti mission trip

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Greencastle Christian Church is sending a team of medical, construction and humanitarian aid workers to Cap Haitian, Haiti, to work from July 7-14.

The team is seeking community donations of Tums, adult ibuprofen, children's ibuprofen, children's multivitamins, adult multi vitamins, fingernail polish, soccer balls, ball pumps, basketballs, small toys such kites and balsa wood planes and bags of candy like tootsie rolls and suckers, but no candies that will melt.

Donations can be dropped off at Greencastle Christian Church at the church office or at the Allee home at 719 E Seminary St. Donation items are needed by June 20.

Many people know Haiti because of the earthquake that hit in January 2010. Unfortunately many people do not know the terrible life that most people suffer through in Haiti.

Half of the children in Haiti are unvaccinated. Only 40 percent of the population has access to basic health care.

Prior to the 2010 earthquake, nearly half of all Haitian deaths were attributed to HIV/AIDS, respiratory infections, meningitis and diarrheal diseases, according to the World Health Organization. HIV infection is found in 2.2 percent of Haiti's adult population.

Ninety percent of Haiti's children suffer from waterborne diseases and intestinal parasites. The incidence of tuberculosis (TB) in Haiti is more than 10 times as high as in the rest of Latin America.

Approximately 30,000 people in Haiti suffer each year from malaria.

In its 2009 Human Development Index, the U.N. ranked Haiti No. 149 out of 182 countries, the worst in the Western Hemisphere. In its 2009 Corruption Perceptions Index, Transparency International ranked Haiti No. 168 out of 180 countries.

Finally, in its Failed State Index, the Fund for Peace ranked Haiti No. 12 -- in this case a low number isn't good -- out of 177 countries, the only Western Hemisphere country placing in the "alert" (worst) category. This was before the earthquake.

For its part, Haiti was not a Third World country even before the earthquake. It was a type of "Fourth World" -- desperately poor and unsustainable on its own, according to Forbes.

The team from Greencastle Christian Church will be working on a construction project and providing health care through a local clinic. Half of the team will be working construction -- specifically building a roof over a church in Lory, outside of Cap Haitian.

The other half of the team will be working in a make shift clinic seeing patients from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily for five days and educating women on health issues.

The team consists of Tom and Anita Cole, Kara Birt, Elizabeth, Matt and Amanda Allee, Denise Sigworth, Jamie Cashion, Angela Miracle, Kristen Ness, Donna Westell, Robert and Joyce Ciyou and Jody Shulz.

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