We pray that you had a Merry Christmas and a blessed start to the New Year. We are very thankful that enough money was raised for the Rice and Goats (and Chicken) Fund to make the season much more enjoyable for our employees. We appreciate your generosity in helping to reduce the stress that the unrest has caused the Haitian people. You have followed Jesus’ example where repeatedly we find Him “seeing the multitude and being moved with compassion toward them,” He then reached out to help supply their needs. We received reports that it was relatively peaceful throughout the holiday season, and some supplies were able to reach Cayes to bring more joy to our dear friends.
Our trip back home from Haiti was uneventful, for which we are thankful. I had my blood checked right before we left and no bugs had grown after the 9 weeks of treatment for the yeast in my blood, a serious situation. As I continued to have considerable drainage from the extra holes in my lower abdomen, as soon as I got home, Dr. Dan De Cook removed the tube from my lower abdomen and set me up to get some help from the wound and ostomy clinic in the hopes of getting better control. I have to put a bag over the 3 holes in my lower belly to control the floods that had been abundant before and have been more energetic since the tube was removed. I began having fevers soon after and again, after only 3 weeks in the clear, discovered another yeast infection growing in my blood. I have been eating and drinking essentially nothing but still have enough unplanned floods to change all my clothing up to 4 times daily. I have had 4 visits now with the ostomy nurse and we have tried a number of different appliances and I think we are making progress. At least the laundry pile is shrinking anyway. It was great to have Rachel home for the holidays, especially as she seems to like doing laundry and was especially valuable in that realm. I got my CT scan today and will get my TPN (IV food line) changed on Friday to hopefully get ahead of the infections. She also helped me profit from the post holiday sales to get more dark long underwear and nice looking dark sweat pants as we clean the stuff but the stains can be hard to get out.
As I mentioned in a previous update, we are growing more concerned with how to keep the Hospital running with the unreliable government system providing less and less electricity. We desire that every person who comes through our gates has an opportunity to hear the Gospel message, but to do so, we must be able to provide consistent reliable service to the community.
In our current state, we have several battery inverter systems and two diesel generators to support during outages. In 2019 we only received 240 hours of electricity, most during the nighttime, which is not ideal. This forced us to run our generators 12-14 hours a day, and at night supplied electricity with our battery inverters enough to run lights. Haiti is now facing shortages of almost everything and inflation is steadily increasing prices, including the diesel fuel needed to run the generators. In addition, the Haitian government has been subsidizing the price of fuel a dollar per gallon, and once they stop, the price of fuel will naturally go up even further.
We have considered a solar powered system several times in the past, but the initial expense ($275,000 USD) has always made us reluctant. However, with all the increased uncertainty in Haiti, politically, financially and in availability of supplies, we now feel installing a solar electrical generating system is the only option for a more reliable method to keep the hospital functioning. We have gotten two estimates, although both systems have small differences, the estimated costs are very close. This system has to be able to handle all our needs, which are quite large. We have an X-ray machine, water system, refrigeration, laundry, ultra sound equipment, Lab equipment, Operating Room equipment, air conditioning, lighting, etc.
We think we can do this in a couple of phases, with the first phase being approximately $150,000. This would give us the batteries and inverters which we could charge with the generators in two or three hours a day, allowing less fuel to be used and allowing us to be able to run our equipment 24 hours a day. Then, as we are able to raise more funds, we would add solar panels and charge controllers to complete the project properly.
All this being said, we are reaching out to you, our ministry partners, as many of you have asked how you can pray and/or financially support our efforts in Haiti. We know this will be a large undertaking, but trust that if this is the direction the Lord would have us go, He will provide. Proverbs 3:6 reminds us that we need to “in all our ways (to) acknowledge Him, and He shall direct our paths.”
As always, we appreciate all you do, individually and corporately, to help us serve our Haitian brothers and sisters in the Les Cayes, Haiti area at Centre de Sante Lumiere.
In His Service,
Bill, Dan and Duane
If you wish more information on the Solar Project, feel free to contact any of us (though my two partners undoubtedly will know infinitely more details than I):
Bill Ten Haaf
As usual, you can send the funds to either:
Centre de Sante Lumiere USA
c/o PVI Washing
2632 28th St SW
Wyoming, MI 49519
Byron Center Bible Church
8855 Byron Center Avenue
Byron Center, MI 49315
And mark it for “CSL Solar Project” in either case