May Trip and Other News

May 2021 Trip (19-27)

We were packed and ready to leave by 2 pm on the19th, our required Covid-19 tests completed, only to arrive at the airport and find that our tests were not American Air approved. So off we went to the parking lot testing site for a 2nd test to the tune of $300. The remainder of the trip went great and we arrived at the hospital in Les Cayes by 4 pm on the 20th. Much work was accomplished this trip, including the preparation of the new operating room. Duane built cabinets and Evert began installing air conditioning and wiring. Dr. Jose is excited to begin a new area of testing/surgery that the hospital has not done before. The ladies cleaned, sorted, and prepared lunches for the 10 Haitian workers every work day, along with visits to encourage the local missionaries. Duane led meetings with the doctors and the administrator each day, talking through and dealing with many administrative issues. We are excited and encouraged to see the work continue. Dr. Bill is missed, but the work he began is continuing for God’s glory.

Thank you for all your prayers for Dr. William and his schooling. He is very close to finishing his required thesis, which must be completed before he is officially able to get his surgical license. He is currently working at the hospital.

The two chaplains at the hospital continue to share the only true hope of Jesus Christ to each and every patient. They have a positive attitude and are always eager to pray with each member of the team.

On Sunday our group of 4 spent the day with Rod, Debbie, and Katie Wray at Camp Mahanaim (God’s Camp) and attended the Sunday School and feeding program. It is always a huge blessing to visit this ministry. Every child attending the weekly Sunday School hears the gospel and receives a manna pack.

“Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself.” – Philippians 2:3

God Bless, Duane and Ruth Verkaik & Evert and Kitty Bek

In other news…

We have completed our work on the design and engineering of the solar system and have given Smucker’s Energy permission to being purchasing the needed components. Our hope is to get all the components there by December for a mid-January installation. This has turned into a huge project; the new roof on the in-patient building, construction of an equipment room, design and engineering, solar components, shipping, and installation bring the cost to $440,000. We need to raise an additional $75,000 to cover this cost. If we aren’t able to raise the total cost, we will install the system with fewer batteries, which can be added at a later date as the money is available. Pease consider donating to this project. We are looking forward to being able to offer excellent 24-hour care to our patients without the obstacles of unreliable electricity and limited generator power, coupled with fuel shortages during times of civil unrest. We are so thankful for those who work to make this mission possible. We would not be able to do what we do without the support of so many. Tabitha Sheen, our recent board member addition, has worked very hard to reconnect with the IDA foundation in the Netherlands, which supplies low cost medical supplies for mission organizations. We have placed an order for supplies and they should be on their way in a couple of weeks. Jim Heist, a retired machinist, has also been hand-making much needed external fixators for our expanding orthopedic department. There are many more who work behind the scenes, using their God-given talents to aid this ministry.

We are sad to have to share that our head of nursing, Miss Corrine, passed into glory at the hospital on June 7 from complications with type 1 diabetes. She was a huge part of our ministry and had served with dedication for many years. She will be greatly missed. Please pray for her family and our staff as they mourn her loss and seek to find someone to fill her role.

“Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes” – James 4:14

Thank you for your partnership in sharing Christ as CSL! Dan

December 2020

A lot has happened in December. A lot of projects are in process at CSL. However, we must acknowledge all the planning and preparation that happened during the previous three months. I want to call out Duane; he has put countless hours planning, preparing, collecting, recruiting, building, and being away from home at CSL for a month leading these projects. Thank You, Duane. We are also blessed with many others. Each of you serve an important part of this Mission. Your hands, your feet, your time, your donations, your prayers – we give thanks for all of you!

We have several projects we are working on. A new building for the dental clinic, a building for the USAID program, the replacement of almost 100 doors and frames (we lost this battle with the termites), building of a new pediatric ward, remodeling of the clinic, preparing the roof of the in-patient area for mounting of solar panels, and preparing the electric service for solar installation.

It all started in October when we sent a container full of supplies. When we left in October, we put our Haitian construction men to work doing all the needed block work for all of these projects with a focus on the inside of the USAID building. By Mid-November, Duane was at the hospital with a team of his family. They worked on the finishing of the USAID building and some much needed maintenance and organization, followed by a team hanging doors and doing plumbing work, then another to do mostly electrical.

The experience Duane has gained making travel arrangements for all of us, and changing them, and changing them, and again, changing them, I think he should start a Travel Agency!!!!!! Getting everyone in and out of Haiti during these times has been a huge challenge.

Great progress has been made on all of these projects. After a little break we start at it again on the 8th of January. We are looking forward to seeing these projects completed.

The Hospital continues to be very busy. We are excited to see the progress that has been made by the staff. We continue to work with them to improve the service given to the Haitian people.

Each trip we are reminded in some way how hard and sometimes cruel life can be. The Saturday we arrived, as the clinic waiting area started to empty, we noticed a little boy, maybe 3 or 4. We think he has cerebral palsy. Someone left him there! Someone took him home for the weekend, thinking they could keep him, however on Monday he was back. When we left the staff was still taking care of him in the hospital.  We are looking for a place that would take him.  Can you imagine being in that situation?

This week we will finalize the Rice and Goat fund. This is always a blessing for the staff as it provides for their needs but also lets them know a lot of people care and support the work they are doing.

Dr. Bill continues to rest at home, watching and giving us guidance. Wishing he could be there.

Have a Merry Christmas.

Dr. Bill, Duane, Dan and the whole crew!

Hot and Humid Haiti Keeps Humans Soaked While They Work (With Sweat)

Hi All:

We are a third way through December already and still have a bit to go on this year’s projects.  It doesn’t help that we got a late start with covid-19 restrictions, no one seems to know what actually is the rule in Haiti at present.  However, we have had 2 teams come in and go without difficulties since September and have a large number in there at present.  I think most, if not all, are coming home this weekend and a large team will go out in early January who will raise and reinforce the roof to be able to bear the weight of the solar panels, etc.  This one has been there for 15 years and has done well, we once had 4 panels come loose with Hurricane Matthew but repairable.  This will be a large project, but when finished, we will be able to assess what we need to do to complete the jobs before us, purchase batteries and solar panels as we are able to raise the additional funds, etc,   We can start using the system in its limited capacity in the meantime and save the ever questionable fuel supply.  I just confirmed with Tom Failing that everyone came home safely, thank the Lord.  They have finished the USAID building and have moved them into the new quarters, which will free up some rooms in the clinic for Drs. Lamy (orthopedics) and William (General Surgery).  Physical Therapy continues to function superbly, many thanks to Mme. Schaller, who returned from 3 months furlough in Germany, as did Johannes and Luise.

 

From a health standpoint, the Haitian Donkey continues to struggle.  At present he has 4 tubes sticking out of his body, a foley catheter, which likely will stay in my body the rest of my life as there seems to be a lot of residual tumor in my pelvis and removing the foley will just lead to bladder infections.  The one draining the leak in my left lower quadrant is slowing down but will stay til it comes out of it’s own or the output goes to zero (not likely).  The jejunostomy tube is lifelong, of course, as I have no connection to the outside and I have a wound vac now snuggled next to the ostomy, difficult to not have the two get in each other’s way.  Margie is superb at replacing it, she will teach Rachel and Jenn as I plan to spend a couple weeks with James and Jenn for Christmas so can see the little one without too much contamination risk for him.  The parents are super careful with germ exposure as he is only 2 months old yet so far.

 

Thank you for the nice Christmas cards.  I hope to make some with my family when we get together at Christmas and send them out after the holidays, so the Donkey apologizes in advance.  We are waiting another week to see what we get in the Rice and Goats fund and then will distribute the funds and critters accordingly, so also thankful in advance for that encouragement.  Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and Blessed New Year.  As always, thank you so much for your continual support financially, prayerfully and in so many other ways for our efforts at Centre de Sante Lumiere in Les Cayes for God’s Glory!

 

In His Service,

 

Bill and the team