West Tennessee Haiti Partnership

CBU Nurses in Haiti – Day 4

Day 4 – Nov 6th

A lovely day… of course we did not have electricity for a couple hours. Verlee reminded all “Dr. Trzynka told us we might not have electricity”.

The bus arrived on time and off to another exciting day. The clinic was set up and ready to go in short order but there was a delay in bringing the children. All but Kathy and the leadership nurses, Ramelle, Clark, and Christen changed positions today. Verlee seems to work magic on the children and pretty much everybody else including people on the street. Her new name is “Sister Big Girl”. She of course takes it all in stride and jokes about all the comments the men are making. We processed all 60 children by 11:30, had a lunch break, and began to see the laundry ladies and cooks.

We have a list of needs that is growing. We need gero-vitamins, adult vitamins, prenatal vitamins for new moms and infant vitamins. We need an ACE inhibitor for Marie Carmel and would be good to have for others. There is only one bottle of HCTZ and 2 of beta-blockers (50 mg). Greg reorganized the pharmacy – again and it would probably meet military standards!!

The children are so special and are very grateful for each hygiene kit that we give them. Today with the club foot clinic all the moms and dads were asking for toothbrushes. Really they were not asking but were demonstrating brushing their teeth. We just cannot give one a toothbrush and not give all of them one. I did break the rules and give a dum dum to the cutest little chubby boy who sat on my lap and gave me hugs; I am a push over. JoJo gave a painting demonstration and is making something in yellow that “I will just love”. Tomorrow he will be showing his artwork – the group is on notice…. bring your money.

The cool off time in the pool was a very animated volleyball game. There were no winners – just fun. The spaghetti with meat sauce for dinner was greeted with joy and completely enjoyed by all. There was a salad with dried figs, carrots, cashews, broccoli, pineapples, and something else that was delicious. The cole slaw was extra, extra spicy that required a bucket of water or a fire extinguisher!!

So now after sorting the hygiene kits again to make sure all combs, kleenex, bandaids and anything extra has been removed, some of the group is doing clinical logs, some playing cards, a couple painting numbers on the bottle of plastics ducks and others following the election of facebook.

Lee Ann summed up the day… blessed, Jennifer – rewarding, Garrett -refreshing, Greg – hot (of course we kept him in the pharmacy closet all day), Patti – teamwork, Stephanie – smooth, Kathy – joyful, Clark – fun (he played soccer with the kids), Ramelle – inspiring, Verlee – joy, Laura – meaningful, Marcia – happy, and Summer is asleep. My word….. worthwhile.


Dr. Sue Trzynka teaches nursing at CBU in Memphis and lives in Jackson, TN
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