Friday, January 08, 2010

a new way to love

As a result of the generous giving of many we will soon purchase a vehicle specifically designated for use for the Heartline Women's Program. We are so thankful to have reached the goal. We are thankful to the runners and thankful to the donors.

Stories like Jessica's help to point out what a blessing this emergency transport vehicle will be.

Jessica lives in Simone Pele, a very poor area not too far from the airport and Cite Soleil. She is fifteen years old and just gave birth to her baby.

We met Jessica in October on our monthly visits to Simone Pele. We immediately asked her to join our Thursday Prenatal program in order to better serve and help her. Her pregnancy was high risk for a number of reasons. She experienced complications including bleeding. Due to the complications we suggested to her that the Doctors without Borders hospital would be a safer place to deliver. It is located very near Simone Pele. They are experienced and ready to do C-Sections and there was concern about Jessica's delivery.

On Monday night Jessica had her baby. Because it was the middle of the night and there was not transportation available to her - and because her mom was not able to leave home with her - Jessica delivered at her home in one of the worst environments you can imagine. She delivered without any skilled medical attendant.

On Wednesday we were in Simone Pele doing the regular monthly outreach clinic. Jessica came hobbling into the church. Beth spotted her and walked up and hugged her right away. We asked her, why she was walking that way? Jessica explained the multiple reasons she could not get to the hospital to deliver. Joanna (above in photo) checked Jessica and found a very serious third-degree tear. Jessica was in horrible pain due to the tear and it showed in every move she made and even in the way she stood still. It was heartbreaking.

The ideal thing had already not happened. We were all concerned for Jessica.

Today she came to see Jonna (a midwife volunteering in Haiti until August) and Jonna was able to sew her up while Brittany interpreted and comforted her. Whether or not her body will heal correctly remains to be seen, but we are praying for that. She needs to care for a tiny newborn and is fighting infection due to the tear and the unsafe birth.

Once we have our vehicle, each woman in our program will have our phone numbers and be asked to call us day or night. If they go into labor and need help in the night they will have the option to be picked up. The vehicle will offer a choice to poor woman in our community. It will be stocked and ready to care for our women. This ambulance will serve them for more than just the occasional need to go to a hospital for a C-section. We will be able to go pick up the ladies in the night and get them to the Birthing Center to deliver.

Thank you to each of you that gave, that prayed, that follow and support this program. Buying a vehicle does not sound like a tangible way to help a hurting person ... but in reality, it will do exactly that. Thank-you for trusting your hard-earned dollars to us and to this effort. Thank you for your continued prayer and financial support.

Our vehicle provides us a new way to love our ladies. On Sunday we'll be running with Jessica in mind.

Photo: Jessica in turquoise, Joanna and Agathe standing to talk to her, Jessica's Mother and newborn baby sitting down