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Health Care in Rural Haiti

and how the Taryn Center will change it in the 9th Communal Section of Bainet, Haiti.

Haiti ranks last in the western hemisphere for adequate healthcare. There are only 25 physicians, 11 nurses and 1 midwife per 100,000 population. Only one-fourth of births are attended by a skilled health professional.

Most rural areas have no access to health care, making residents susceptible to otherwise treatable diseases. Deficient sanitation systems, poor nutrition, and inadequate health services have pushed Haiti to the bottom of the World Bank’s rankings of health indicators. According to the United Nations World Food Program, 80 percent of Haiti’s population lives below the poverty line. In fact, 75% of the Haitian population lives on less than $2.50 per day. Consequently, malnutrition is a significant problem. The World Health Organization estimates that only 43 percent of the target population receives the recommended immunizations. In 2013, there were approximately 800 primary care facilities in Haiti, with only 43% of these facilities being classified as good for accessible care. The 2015 maternal mortality rate per 100,000 births for Haiti was 359. The under age 5 mortality rate, per 1,000 births is 89 and the neonatal mortality was 28 per 1000. The lifetime risk of death for pregnant women is 1 in 93. Political, economic, and social instability of the country has resulted in insufficient resources to educate and provide care for pregnant women. Lilian and Cassandra Teaching Children about Hygiene We have made considerable progress in nutrition and clean water in the area where we work. However, this area is relatively remote and has little access to adequate healthcare. We have recently purchased property in the village of Larevwa are now in the beginning stages of building a medical clinic. We have been able to assist Lilian Baptiste in her work toward a degree in nursing at FSIL, which is part of the Episcopal University in Leogane Haiti. Lilian has recently completing her fourth year of classes and is now completing her clinicals and theses. She will be graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in December of 2020. She is hoping to go on to receive her Master’s Degree and license as a Nurse Practitioner. When Lilian completes her education, she will return to Larevwa where she will serve the community in the medical clinic. Because of the extreme shortage of healthcare providers in Haiti, Nurse Practitioners are authorized to provide diagnoses and treatment without the supervision of a Doctor. We have, however, made contact with hospitals in Port au Prince area and discussed the possibility of developing a relationship between the clinic that we establish and the hospital. We have also been working with another graduating nursing student who will serve the community by working in the clinic. Cassandra Mirtyl Vanelie, like Lilian, is very interested in returning to her home village to practice nursing. We will assist Cassandra to go on and receive a master’s degree and certification as a midwife. Lilian and Cassandra have worked together in the community by putting on hygiene demonstrations and distributing supplies to the children in Larevwa. While funding for the clinic and birthing center has been interrupted by the corona virus, Love the Children and Taryn Community Center are continuing to move ahead with our plans for this crucial medical facility. Already, the men of the village, along with many of the high school children are leveling the lot and digging for the footer. Next, we will help them buy the materials and they will begin to manufacture concrete blocks. As funds become available, we will help them purchase other necessary building materials and they will supply 100% of the labor. Please help us with a gift, designated to the Taryn Medical Resource Center.

Our In-country Staff

Haitians ministering to Haitians

Love the Children is very proud of our In-country staff. We believe that every member is the perfect person for the position that they hold.

Louissaint Destin - In-Country Director

The in-country staff is headed by Louissaint Destin, better known to us as Junior. Junior was one of the young men who introduced the rural village of Larevwa to Bob and inspired the creation of Love the Children. Junior has been very instrumental in getting the support of the local villagers and encouraging them to do everything that is necessary to make life better for the children in that part of Haiti. As the In-country Director, Junior is responsible for supervising the Principal of the Evangelique Mixte Ecole de Lavevoir (EMEL) and the Director of Taryn Budd Memorial Educational Research Center (Taryn Center). He is also responsible for maintaining relationships with the churches and schools in the area. Junior has planted and maintains demonstration gardens where he teaches advanced agricultural methods to farmers. He also teaches English. Enis Choulou The Principal of EMEL, (Evangelic Co-ed School of Larevoir), is Enis Choulou. Enis has been the Principal at EMEL since it’s conception. He was the one who created the plans for the school, took the plans to the Haitian Department of Education and executed the plan. Without Enis’ knowledge of the Haitian education system and his hard work, it is unlikely that the school would have been started. Enis continues to lead the school through the education process and insures that the students are progressing. Enis supervises a staff of nine teachers and two teacher’s Aides. He is also responsible for the supervision of the hot lunch program and the clean water project. EMEL Teaching Staff We are very proud of our teaching staff at EMEL who are working very hard to make EMEL the best school in Haiti. Felix Marie Laure Preschool A Erne Bethina Preschool B Georges Marie Missoule Preschool C Pierre Guito 1st Grade Justin Marcel 2nd Grade Denejour Junior 3rd Grade Destin Yves 4th Grade Destin Alain 5th Grade Georges Christobal 6th Grade Jean Louis Clericia Teacher's Aid Jesper Joseph Teachers Aid Yvronel Sobia The Director of the Taryn Center is Yvronel Sobias. Yvronel is the newest member of our leadership team in Haiti but is making a very big impact. He is responsible for implementing all of the new programs that have been made possible by opening the Taryn Center. In addition to being responsible for the overall operation of the Taryn Center, he teaches English, music and computer usage. Yvronel is a very accomplished musician and is the worship leader at his home church in Chaumeille.

Paster Training Center

Spreading the Good News in Sud Est Haiti

The vast majority of the Haitians are professing Christians. Many of them have a deep faith that can only be the result of knowing that God is the only one on whom they can rely.

As difficult as their life is in Haiti, they rejoice in their eternal relationship with Jesus Christ. We have seen and heard, however, signs of their culture, including Voodoo, creeping in and distorting the gospel. While we are not capable or desiring to judge their culture or to impose our own on them, we are concerned that they may be missing all that God has in store for them. Over the past few years, we have discussed this with some of the local pastors. They have explained that most pastors in rural Haiti have little education at all and no formal bible or theological education. Young pastors simply work and study under an older pastor. As a result, both good and bad teachings are passed down. They have expressed that they would be interested in any bible and theological training that we could help make available to them. There is at least one seminary, located in Port au Prince, and a few bible schools in Port au Prince and Cap Haitian, but none located within a four-hour drive of the area in which we work. There are, however, numerous sources of bible and theological study available on the internet. Now that the Taryn Educational Resource Center is operational in Larevwa, we are able to obtain the necessary training materials on-line. When the Taryn Center was in the early planning stage, we began looking into bible and theological training that we might be able to utilize. The criteria we used was 1. solid evangelic theology, 2. presented in Haitian Creole or French, and 3. affordable tuition. After looking at several options, we arrived at Christian Leaders Institute. We first became interested in CLI because their tuition is donation based and many of their classes are taught in both English and French. In order to test their theology, we monitored several of their classes. We have determined that the Christian Leaders Institute classes will become the core curriculum used in the new Pastor Training Center. It is our desire to be able to translate additional educational materials in the future. Pastors and aspiring pastors will attend online class lectures over the large monitor located in the Taryn Center they will then be able to attend discussion groups in the classrooms. Students will then take tests individually, online in the computer lab. Christian Leaders Institute will grade tests and maintain records of student progress. Bob Lichy has become listed as a Mentor Minister by Christian Leaders Assembly and will be guiding the students through the education and ordination process.

Love the Children and all the those that live in the 9th Communal Area of Bainet Haiti are thankfull for the generous gift from Moorings Presbyterian Church.

Moorings Presbyterian Church's 2020 Easter Offering was given to Love the Children and made it possible for the community to purchase the land and construct the building foundation on which the Taryn Medical Center will be constructed.

In addition to purchasing the land, your gift was used to purchase building materials. All labor has been supplied by the men from the community. Their only pay has been a hot lunch each work day. Not only were building materials purchased for the foundation, but they also purchased some of the materials to begin manufacturing concrete blocks for the building walls. We are committed to completing the interior and exterior walls prior to the end of this year. These are just a few pictures of the foundation. You will note that the foundation is not only around the perimeter but is also where the interior walls will be located. Since the 2010 earthquake that devastated their country, Haitians are very nervous about masonry buildings. To compensate for their concern, they like to exceed normal standards for aseismic structures. This project has created a lot of excitement in southern Haiti. Not only are the villagers around Moro, Larevwa, and Chaumeille excited but I am told that people from as far as 20 or 25 kilometers away are excited to have accessible health care. Moorings is having a real impact in this little part of God’s Kingdom.

This is an article that appear in the Haitian Times on November 16, 2020 that we are reprinting for your information.

Democrat Joseph R. Biden’s victory won’t change much in Haiti, mired as the country is in economic inequality and political unrest, some observers say. Others, mostly policy experts, insist the new United States administration will have significant influence as Haiti moves forward — with an early, key test being how well Haiti carries out its own elections in 2021. “There were [Democrats] in the past who were very close to Haiti, but that did not change the country’s situation,” said Phares Jerome, 41, a journalist based in Port-au-Prince. “It’s up to Haitians to fight for changes in the country’s situation, not an American president, whether he is a Democrat or a Republican.” All agree that for better or worse, the decisions of the world’s preeminent superpower will certainly affect Haiti. Through both its rhetoric and actions, policy experts say, the incoming Biden administration’s responses to increased concern for human rights and changes in immigration policy could certainly distinguish itself from that of President Donald Trump. The Biden transition team has not yet returned requests from comment. However, during the campaign, Biden’s campaign team released a list of priorities that included effective oversight of U.S. government funds to Haiti and working with the Haitian government to hold prompt elections. Protections for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holders in the U.S. and a stop to deportations also made the list. And, with Karine Jean-Pierre set to serve as chief of staff to Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, community members have said the U.S. will likely pay closer attention to Haiti. Jean-Pierre told The Haitian Times in an Oct. 14 interview that Biden’s commitment to the Haitian community “is rooted in a fundamental belief in the unlimited potential of our community and ensuring that the Haitian people are treated with [the] respect and dignity that they deserve.” Haitian voices on Biden’s victory Haitian President Jovenel Moïse joined most of the world’s leaders to congratulate Biden on his victory. Moïse said via Twitter, “The USA is an important ally for Haiti, and I look forward to continued cooperation with this friend.” Other leaders also said they were breathing a sigh of relief because, unlike Trump’s personality-driven leadership, Biden has respect for institutions and the rule of law. Among regular Haitians, the view is that Haiti will not be any greater of a priority for the new administration than it has been for the current. That reality, they say, underscores why Haitians must rely on themselves to make the country better. “I don’t think when Biden comes to power in January, he’s going to focus on Haiti’s issues first,” Jerome said. “The United States has many issues waiting for him.” Port-au-Prince resident Peterson Cledanor, 24, said opportunities for change will depend on the relationship Biden’s administration forms with Haiti’s ruling party. “Since Biden is a Democrat, there are some small things that might change, it will depend on how PHTK will negotiate with Joe Biden’s team,” Cledanor said. Haiti’s PHTK is the political party that brought Moïse to power. It has been likened to Trump’s Republican party for some of its populist messaging and brash leadership style. The Haitian president, along with other Caribbean leaders, also made a trip to Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home that some saw as obsequious. D’jerby Raphael, 25, criticized Haiti’s leadership for its subservience to the current president, particularly considering Trump’s disparaging remarks about Haiti. “None of them rejected what Trump said or tried to put him in his place,” said Raphael, a Port-au-Prince resident and medical student. Haiti elections as an early test Affronts aside, all eyes are on the PHTK to see how it will run Haiti under Biden. After Haiti failed to hold parliamentary elections in 2019, Moïse has governed mostly through presidential decree. François Pierre-Louis, a political science professor at Queens College in New York, said Moïse’s attacks on the judicial branch and propensity to rule by decree are similar to Trump’s governing style. “The Haitian president is governing like how Trump wanted to govern in the States,” Pierre-Louis said. Recently, the question of when to hold legislative elections has provided the backdrop to U.S.-Haiti relations. In October, the U.S. State Department encouraged Haiti to hold legislative elections no later than January 2021. Foreign governments have raised doubts about whether political and security conditions in Haiti can support legitimate elections. One issue further complicating matters is disagreement over whether Moïse’s term should end in 2021 or 2022. If Haiti does hold fair legislative and presidential elections, Pierre-Louis said the PHTK party would not stand a chance, given its minimal popular support. Reducing the potential for violence by politically connected gangs is a key element in ensuring a fair process. However, Haiti’s most powerful gangs often have the tacit support of corrupt police, Pierre-Louis said. Police who, under the Trump administration, saw U.S. financial support increase from $2.8 million to $12.4 million. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Sed malesuada faucibus ex nec ultricies. Donec mattis egestas nisi non pretium. 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_“The way to cut down the violence is to stop these people from importing weapons to Haiti,” said Pierre-Louis, noting that Biden’s team can use its influence to restrict the flow of arms. The Biden administration’s level of investment in fair elections will largely depend on how the administration balances its other domestic and foreign policy priorities, said Brian Concannon, executive director of the foreign policy advocacy group Project Blueprint. If the Obama administration, in which Biden served as vice president, is any indication, Concannon said he sees little reason for optimism when it comes to fair elections. The flawed 2010 elections excluded major political parties and undermined confidence in the democratic process. Observers worry about similar consequences from a flawed 2021 election. Concannon said he expects human rights groups to continue addressing police corruption. “The Biden administration is going to listen to human rights groups in ways that the Trump administration has not,” Concannon said. Uneven diplomacy under Trump to redress The Trump administration and the Moïse government forged close ties. During Moïse’s Mar-a-Lago visit, Trump agreed to explore U.S. investment opportunities in Haiti. Two months later, the U.S. government inked a $19.5 million deal for a hotel in Cap-Haitien, and officials touted the agreement as a job creator. In other areas, Trump’s administration pulled back on diplomacy. In 2017, it removed the State Department office that helped oversee earthquake reconstruction. It also reduced support for the Caracol Industrial Park community development project meant to create housing and jobs after the 2010 earthquake. “Once Trump came in, that wasn’t a priority,” Pierre-Louis said. “Hopefully diplomacy will come back with Biden, and the issues will be looked at more professionally.” Pleasing the Haitian-American voter base Stateside, the immigration policies Biden has outlined will affect Haiti. Keeping TPS intact for nearly 60,000 Haitians, a campaign promise to counter Trump’s efforts to end the program, will allow residents to continue supporting families in Haiti with their incomes. Biden must also address the Haitian Family Reunification Program created under Obama that Trump ended. Another measure the Trump administration encouraged is Title 42 expulsions, which enables authorities to deport people who have not gone through asylum or immigration processing. “One easy fix is to reinstate this program and the Biden folks have already promised that they’re going to do this,” said Steven Forester, immigration policy coordinator at the Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti. With the advent of COVID-19, observers have feared that deportation of people who carry the coronavirus could be devastating for Haiti. All these issues serve as a strong incentive for Biden’s administration to address, given the growing political power of the Haitian diaspora, if nothing else. This influence can be seen in the higher number of Haitian-American elected officials and Biden giving senior-level posts to Jean-Pierre and the Florida Senior Campaign Advisor Karen Andre, Pierre-Louis said. “We have a lot of elected officials, we have Haitians becoming U.S. citizens in a lot of places,” Pierre-Louis said. “They can make a difference in who gets elected.”

Sam Bojarski Sam Bojarski has been covering Haiti and its diaspora for The Haitian Times since 2018. He is currently covering New York's Haitian community as a Report for America corps member.