Thursday morning seven members of the Convoy of Hope team began their journey to the devastated island-nation, Haiti. They plan to arrive in Port-au-Prince Friday morning and immediately begin an assessment of the destruction there.
Awaiting them on-ground is Kevin Rose, Convoy of Hope’s Country Director for Haiti. Rose was in Port-au-Prince when the earthquake took place and describes the current situation as, “simply overwhelming. It stretches your mind in a hundred different directions.”
Rose is now awaiting the arrival of his team members. Once together they will evaluate the situation and strategically plan to meet the needs of Haitian people as effectively and efficiently as possible.
Gary Higgins, member of the International Team at Convoy of Hope and an experienced former paramedic, is part of that team. He stated, “Our first hope is to meet the three most basic needs for as many people as we can; water, food and shelter. Because the temperature levels in Haiti range between eight-five and ninety degrees Fahrenheit, our priority has to be water. In those kinds of temperatures people can only live 2-5 days without it.”
Due to the innumerable amount of people injured, Gary and another medical team member have plans to set up a mobile triage clinic. They also hope to assist at an established clinic located at the Mission of Hope, an organization with which Convoy of Hope has established a deep-rooted partnership. This clinic is still desperate for experienced staff, medicine and other medical supplies.
Though there is seemingly an insurmountable amount of death and destruction, optimism still reigns. Rose related a story that brings hope and shows that the Haitian people are not giving up.
“Last night I was laying in bed, trying to process all that had had happened in that first full day since the earthquake. As I was lying there, I could hear the voices of people in the streets. I expected to hear cries of desperation and angst; instead I heard the singing of hymns and lifting prayers.”