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Posts Tagged ‘amputees in Haiti’

We wanted to share this lovely message we received from a member of the Project Medishare for Haiti staff:

“What a great and busy few days Team Zaryen has had! The trip included: a halftime exhibition at the DC United vs. Portland Timbers game at RFK Stadium in DC, a live taping at Fox News CT, a meet and greet with the Governor of Connecticut at the State House, scrimmage and soccer clinic in Stamford, a re-union with Ralph Gedeon who was an ISTAT (International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading) Medivac patient from the earthquake, a NY Red Bulls Pre-Game exhibition and a meet and greet with the team, an appearance on Fox and Friends’ national morning show followed by a tour of Times Square and the surrounding area, a Soccer Clinic in Astoria, and finally a shopping trip in Newark, New Jersey’s Wal-Mart where they shopped for their families with such care.

Suffice it to say that the past week has been nothing short of magic! With their sincerity, humility and big hearts; the members of Team Zaryen captured hearts and inspired those wherever they went. It has been my privilege to be part of this team for the past 21 months and I am most grateful. The team wanted to extend their thankfulness to everyone affiliated with Project Medishare and the Knights of Columbus. You all would have been so proud of these incredible, resilient and spiritual men and women as they shared their experience, strength and hope not only with the Wounded Warriors but everywhere they went.”

Team Zaryen in their Nike Soccer donated uniforms

Team Zaryen in their Nike Soccer donated uniforms

Project Medishare for Haiti would like to once again thank Nike Soccer, Perry Ellis and of course the Knights of Columbus.

Team Zaryen meeting with members of the NY Red Bulls

Team Zaryen meeting with members of the NY Red Bulls

We also wanted to send a special thank you to everyone that came out to meet and support Team Zaryen during their Inspiration Tour, without all of you this would not have been possible.

Team Zaryen in Times Square

Team Zaryen in Times Square

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Team Zaryen, Haiti’s amputee soccer team which is sponsored by the Knights of Columbus and Project Medishare, will be participating in the Haitian Inspiration Tour in the United States from October 16-October 22, 2011. The team will host soccer clinics for wounded U.S. soldiers, perform exhibits for Major League Soccer halftime shows and scrimmage against Connecticut high school students. A website featuring Team Zaryen’s Story, Tour schedule, Team information, Mission statement, News and Photos was just unveiled and you can check it out here!

The Team Zaryen Haitian Inspiration Tour schedule is as follows:

Monday, October 17, 2011:
Washington D.C
1-3pm: Amputee Soccer Clinic with service members (Walter Reed Army Medical Center)

Tuesday, October 18, 2011:
Washington D.C
10:30am-12 noon: Soccer Clinic at Robert F. Kennedy Stadium
12:15-1:30pm: Demonstration Game Team Zaryen vs. American Amputee Soccer Team

Wednesday, October 19, 2011:
Washington D.C
10:30am-12 noon: Soccer Clinic at Robert F. Kennedy Stadium
8pm: D.C. United vs. Portland Timbers (Team Zaryen performs at half-time show)

Thursday, October 20, 2011:
Stamford, Connecticut
10:30am: Team Zaryen is welcomed to Connecticut by Governor Dannel P. Malloy
2pm: Demonstration with students at Trinity High School in Stamford, Conn.
Harrison, New Jersey
8pm: New York Red Bulls vs. Philadelphia Union at the Red Bull Arena (Team Zaryen performs at half-time show)

Friday, October 21, 2011:
New York City Media events

We want to wish Wilfrid and Team Zaryen a successful tour next week. As always, please be sure to check our Facebook and Twitter feeds often to get up to date information on all things Project Medishare.

Thank you to Nike Soccer and Lynn Merritt for donating the awesome uniforms to Team Zaryen and to Perry Ellis for outfitting the members of  the team off the field!

This would not be possible without the help of the Knights of Columbus, thank you for your continued partnership with Project Medishare!

Team Zaryen

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DENVER, Aug. 1, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Team Zaryen, Port-au-Prince’s amputee soccer team, will tour the United States this fall, running soccer clinics for wounded members of the U.S. military and focusing attention on the great strides being made by those with disabilities in Haiti.

The tour will be co-sponsored by the Knights of Columbus and Project Medishare, who co-founded “Healing Haiti’s Children” – a program that has made prosthetics available to every child who lost a limb in last year’s earthquake in Port-au-Prince. All of the players on Team Zaryen have received prosthetics courtesy of this program. The earthquake in Haiti last year left thousands of amputees in its wake – many of them children and young adults.

The team and its U.S. tour are some of many positive results to have come from the “Healing Haiti’s Children” program. The program makes a multi-year course of prosthetic care and physical therapy available to every child who lost a limb as a result of the earthquake. Included in the rehabilitation is the “Return to Sport” program where Team Zaryen coaches children and youth in this fast-paced sport so that they too can enjoy the fun and excitement of sport and learn to lead normal lives.

The Knights of Columbus have committed more than $1 million to the “Healing Haiti’s Children” program through Project Medishare, which runs the premier hospital for amputees in Haiti.

“The Knights of Columbus is honored to be able to be able to help transform the lives of children and young people in Haiti and to bring healing and hope to some of the neediest people in our hemisphere,” said Supreme Knight Carl Anderson. “We are very happy to have the members of Team Zaryen, who have overcome so much, with us at our convention.”

“Following the earthquake, there was a tremendous outpouring of support from the people of the United States, much of it coordinated by America’s armed forces,” said Dr. Bob Gailey, director of rehabilitation services for Project Medishare. “Team Zaryen is now looking to return the favor by running clinics for wounded American service members this fall in the United States, and we are honored to be working together with the Knights of Columbus to assist these young people in Haiti and to be providing these clinics for the U.S. military.”

A key reason for forming the soccer team was to change attitudes in Haiti and to help remove the negative stigma associated with being an amputee in Haitian society. The members of Team Zaryen believe their example will prove to the youth of their nation that despite any handicap, there are no limits to what an individual, a team, or a nation can achieve.

Project Medishare for Haiti was founded in 1994 by Drs. Barth Green and Arthur Fournier when they assembled the first team of faculty from the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine and Nursing to assess the health status of Haitians and explore ways of rebuilding their healthcare infrastructure in a long term and meaningful way.

The Knights of Columbus is the world’s largest lay Catholic organization, with more than 1.8 million members around the world. Last year they donated more than $154 million to charity and donated more than 70 million volunteer hours to charitable causes.

Representatives from Team Zaryen with Jason Miller & Dr. Bob Gailey, Director of Rehabilitation Services for Project Medishare, at the Knights of Columbus 129th annual Supreme Convention in Denver, CO.

Special thanks to Perry Ellis for outfitting Team Zaryen for the US tour!

This article can be found on the PRNewswire by clicking here!

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Wilfred Macena

Twenty-six year old Wilfred Macena was at work welding in a shop when the catastrophic earthquake hit Haiti in January 2010. Like so many others, Wilfred was trapped under the rubble. He was able to free himself but not without escaping injury. Wilfred damaged his right leg when it was crushed by falling debris.

Wilfred stayed at home with his injured leg for three days before finally getting to Adventist Hospital. He waited at Adventist Hospital for four days but ended up leaving out of frustration as he was never seen by a doctor and went to the neighboring Dominican Republic. Seven days after being injured in the earthquake, Wilfred had an above the knee amputation on his right leg in the Dominican Republic. At first he was very hesitant about the procedure. He asked the doctor what his prognosis would be following the amputation and was told that he would be able to walk again with a prosthetic leg which made him feel comfortable with the procedure.

On April 1, 2010, Wilfred went to the Project Medishare field hospital to have his leg fitted for a prosthetic. Upon his return to the hospital on April 3, the staff explained to Wilfred how to walk with the prosthetic and within five minutes he was up and running! Dr. Barth A. Green, co-founder of Project Medishare, was in the tent and asked Wilfred if he wanted a job with Project Medishare. Wilfred currently works in the Prosthetics and Orthotics laboratory and clinic at the Hospital Bernard Mevs Project Medishare. He takes measurements for prosthetic limbs and knows how to fix them. He has learned how to speak and understand English while working for Project Medishare. Wilfred is also a mentor to anyone that is facing amputation and for those being fitted for prosthetics. He is the perfect example that life does go on even after amputation and is a constant source of encouragement and inspiration. He is playing soccer again with the Project Medishare Team Zaryen Amputee Soccer team. He has a one and a half year old and is expecting his second child in July.

Wilfred’s spirit is incomparable. It takes two hours to get from his tent home to work every day by taking three tap taps. He repeats the same long, treacherous trip to get home each night. He says that he is extremely grateful to Project Medishare because if he did not work there he would not be able to work as he lost everything, including his welding tools, in the earthquake. It is fair to say that the feeling is mutual; Project Medishare is very grateful to have Wilfred as part of our team.

Wilfred Macena at work in the Prosthetics and Orthotics laboratory and clinic at the Hospital Bernard Mevs Project Medishare

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By Jennifer Browning

She had just finished cooking dinner when the earth shook Port-au-Prince that evening in January. Manoushka Blanc along with her family ran for the door. By the time Manoushka reached the door, the walls and ceiling were already crumbling.

The doorway fell pinning her in the rubble just barely outside her house where her two sisters and four cousins were instantly killed. It was daylight before neighbors could pull her out from under the large piece of concrete crushing her right leg.

A translator helps doctors explain to Manoushka what she should expect when they fit her with a prosthetic leg. Manoushka said that knowing she will be able to walk again gives her hope.

A translator helps doctors explain to Manoushka what she should expect when they fit her with a prosthetic leg. Manoushka said that knowing she will be able to walk again gives her hope.

Her rescuers took her to the UN Hospital where Project Medishare doctors were working at the time. Although in those first 48 hours, medical supplies were limited. Doctors tried to stop the infection and save her leg—but gangrene had already taken over a good portion of her leg.

When the 24-year-old awoke from surgery she was confused about where she was and what had happened.

“It was like I was dreaming, I was still in shock from the earthquake. I didn’t realize I had lost my leg –it was only a few days after that I realized it wasn’t there,” Manoushka said. “I was in a lot of pain. I accepted it because I know the doctors saved my life.”

Before the earthquake Manoushka was a housekeeper. And while the home she where was working is gone, she still worries that without a leg she will no longer be able to do these skills.

But today, at the Project Medishare Hospital a doctor visited to educate her about the prosthetic limb they could design for her. It will take time and hours of physical therapy, but Manoushka will be able walk again.

For the first time, the she felt that there was hope.

“When I first lost my leg, I used to cry a lot,” she said, “but when they told me about this new leg, I stopped crying because I see hope for my future. I feel much better now knowing that I might be able to live a more normal life.”

Now two months after the earthquake, Project Medishare is still helping those like Manoushka who have been permanently affected by the January earthquake. Volunteer orthopedic doctors and surgeons along with physical therapists are working with our amputee patients in preparing them to receive a prosthetic limb.

If you would like to help Project Medishare continue to help those like Manoushka please click here to donate online.

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