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This great documentary on Project Medishare premiered on Plum TV this past weekend. In case you missed it, take a few minutes to watch the video below.

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This past weekend a group of Haitian Americans visited Haiti with Project Medishare. The group consisted of wide receiver for the Indianapolis Colts, Pierre Garçon, recording artist Phyllisia Ross & DJ Griot. During their stay, the group toured Project Medishare’s facilities in the Central Plateau as well as the Hospital Bernard Mevs Project Medishare in Port–au-Prince.

The group was able to see the Cholera Treatment Center (CTC) in Mirebalias, the Akamil Production Facility and the Community Health Program in Thomonde as well as the Community Health Program, Maternal Health Center and staff residence in Marmont.

This was only Garçon’s second time returning to Haiti since the earthquake. After the trip, Garçon said that “the work that Project Medishare is doing in Haiti is inspiring. Witnessing it firsthand just proves how critical it is that they are able to continue performing their lifesaving work.”

The group was also able to spend a day at Hospital Bernard Mevs Project Medishare in Port-au-Prince. “I was very impressed and touched by the care the babies in the Neo-natal Intensive Care Unit were receiving. We were able to see premature twins arrive in the NICU just as we were walking in,” Ross said. “Haiti is a beautiful country filled with the most resilient people. It is truly heartwarming to know that the most deserving people are able to receive advanced health care because of the Project Medishare staff and volunteers.” Hospital Bernard Mevs houses the only Pediatric neo-natal ICU in Haiti.

Below are a couple of pictures that were taken during their trip.

DJ Griot, Marie, NFL Star Pierre Garçon, Medishare's Wilfrid Macena & Singer Phyllisia Ross

Singer Phyllisia Ross with a baby from the NICU at Hospital Bernard Mevs Project Medishare

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By Jennifer Browning

This past Saturday, Fritz & Franz Bierhaus hosted Project Medishare’s Mission: Haiti, a volunteer and fundraiser event which recognized the more than 7000 volunteers who joined our organization in providing aid to earthquake victims over the past eight months.

At the MISSION:HAITI event guests peer inside a MASH Unit-style tent. Over a four month period Project Medishare operated Haiti's only critical care hospital out of three large tents where over 20,000 people were treated before Project Medishare partnered with Hospital Bernard Mevs. Currently, critical patients continue to be cared for in Haiti at Hospital Bernard Mevs Project Medishare. Photo by Omar Vega.

Throughout the evening, over 300 volunteers reunited at the Bierhaus where they enjoyed good tunes by South Florida’s Nightscape Band.

Over $36,000 was raised during the event with generous donations from International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading (ISTAT), The Bierhaus, Nightscape, and the Michael Kelley Family.

Thank you to all who joined us and donated. Project Medishare couldn’t continue our important work without our volunteers, donors and supporters!

Click here to see images from the MISSION: HAITI event.

If you missed the event and would like to make a contribution to help Project Medishare continue its mission to improve Haiti’s healthcare infrastructure click here to make an online donation today.

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By Jennifer Browning

Project Medishare co-founder and president, Dr. Barth A. Green, will receive the Lawton’s Heart Humanitarian Award for his lifetime devotion to humanitarian causes from the Florida Association of Nonprofit Organizations (FANO). The award will be presented by Miller School Dean Pascal J. Goldschmidt during the opening reception of the organization’s annual conference which begins this Wednesday, August 18.

The reception will be from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina, 1881 S.E. 17th Street Causeway, Fort Lauderdale. The price for the reception is $20. The cost for the reception and two-day conference, “A Better Path: Bold Steps to Stronger Resources,” is $95.

FANO is a 20-year-old organization serving Florida nonprofits. The award program was initiated in 1992 to bring public recognition to individuals who dedicate their lives to humanitarian work. In 1999 the name of the award was changed to the Lawton’s Heart Humanitarian Award in honor of the late Florida Governor Lawton Chiles, whose entire career exemplified dedication to community service.

For more information on attending the award ceremony for Dr. Green, please call 305-557-1764 or visit www.fano.org.

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By Jennifer Browning

Dousma madame, dousma,..” Sammie Jean Charles tells a patient to go slowly as she moves her leg backwards and starts to feel the resistance from the band.

Sammie, a physical therapy tech in training, is working with Roslyn Gillen, an occupational therapist volunteering this week at Bernard Mevs/Project

Sammie Jean Charles assists Roslyn Gillen with a patient's physical therapy. As part of the physical therapy tech training program, students shadow and assist volunteer therapists with patient's exercises. “We are trying to reinforce whatever they are working on this week as well as allowing them to assist us where they can," Roslyn said. Photo by Jennifer Browning.

Medishare.

The recent move to the community hospital has created also a partnership. Project Medishare volunteers are now working side-by-side with Haitian physicians, surgeons, nurses, and pharmacists in an effort to “train the trainer.”  Those coming to volunteer at the trauma and rehabilitation hospital, are not only coming to work, but to also share their knowledge with their Haitian colleagues as part of  Project Medishare’s medical educational training program. Currently, there are five students going through training to be a physical therapy tech.

Sammie began working with Project Medishare as an interpreter. Through working with the physical therapists in transfers of spinal cord patient and out-patient rehabilitation, he became interested in the field.

“I wanted to learn about physical therapy, but there isn’t a school in Haiti,” Sammie said, “and now the people here with Project Medishare are helping us get training.”

And if there were a school for physical therapy in Haiti, Sammie said, it would be too expensive for him to attend.  He sees the additional benefit.

“Many Haitians have the willingness to learn, but to get an education, to learn a skill many times you need the money to pay for the school, but with Medishare here, they are training me for free,” Sammie said. “They are giving me a great opportunity to learn to be a physical therapy tech.”

Alyson Cavanaugh is one of the two long-term volunteers who are training students like Sammie.

“The overall goal is to teach our PT techs to be able to take over this position so that when someone comes in with an injury, they are able to evaluate them and to provide treatment services,” she said. “Eventually when we are gone we want them to be able to do basic physical therapy. “

So far the physical therapists in training have learned basic physical therapy exercises, lower extremity anatomy, and they are beginning to participate in evaluating patients.

In addition to this, they are receiving a hands-on experience as they work with the volunteer physical therapists in assigning exercises and providing patient education regarding the exercises prescribed for physical therapy.

Roslyn Gillen, an occupational therapist from Victoria, B.C. who is volunteering this week, said Sammie shadows her as part of his training. Roslyn also constantly reviews with Sammie on the information he has already learned.

Physical therapy tech student, Sammie Jean Charles and Marie Carmelle Charles, work with a volunteer on range of motion exercises. "In Haiti we have a dream that we will be able to learn," Marie said. "Now with this training opportunity, that dream is coming true." Photo by Jennifer Browning.

“Right now we are focusing on testing their knowledge regarding range of motion,” she said. “We are trying to reinforce whatever they are working on this week as well as allowing them to assist us where they can.”

The PT tech students have also attended a three-day training on wheelchair fitting as well as training in wound care.

Alyson said she appreciates how eager the students are about learning all the necessary skills.

“They are super excited to learn and they are eating up every little bit of information,” she said. “There is a lot of memorization involved, so they are practicing each and everyday between each other and reviewing the anatomy. “

The physical therapy tech students are also requesting to gain more responsibilities in dealing with patients. For Alyson, this is a good sign.

“They are asking now to be more involved with transfers, so they are taking the lead in our spinal cord unit to get the patients out of bed,” she said. “They are all independent in transfers working with spinal cord patients.”

Another physical therapy tech student, Aviça Charles said this is not only a great learning experience for him, but a great opportunity for him to help others in the future.

“I am very happy to have this program here, because too many times when someone here in Haiti breaks their leg or arm they may not get the therapy they need to get better,” Aviça said. “With this program, and with the training I receive I will be able to one day help people get healthy.”

Six months after the January earthquake, Project Medishare continues to work in Haiti in an effort not only to treat the people of Haiti, but also to better train the medical staff there in order to empower the Haitian people.

Click here to make an online donation to show your support in continuing Project Medishare’s medical educational training program.  Funding is still extremely important to continue these important, long-term life saving efforts.

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By Jennifer Browning

In an effort to promote forward giving Chase Community Giving is giving away another $5 million. Project Medishare supporters can vote to help put our organization in the top 200 charities in the running to help us a receive donation from Chase Community Giving.

Join us and Chase Community Giving. Vote and share your decision on your personal Facebook page and then continue to spread the word! Email your friends asking them to vote for Project Medishare on the Chase Community Giving Facebook Page!

Voting ends on July 12! On July 13 Chase Community Giving will announce the winners. First place winning charity will receive $250,000. The four runners-up will receive $100,000, and 195 other top voted charities will receive $20,000.

Here’s how it works:

1.) Log into your Facebook account.

2.) Go to Project Medishare’s Chase Community Giving Page.

3.) You will have to click “like” on the Chase Community Giving Page before you can vote.

4.) VOTE for Project Medishare

5.) Share your vote with friends on your personal Facebook Page encouraging them to cast a vote for Project Medishare.

Want to push the vote further? Message your Facebook friends, asking them to vote for Project Medishare too.

Every day in Port-au-Prince and in the Central Plateau, Project Medishare is working side-by-side with Haitian doctors, nurses, pharmacists and community healthcare workers to empower them to help improve healthcare in Haiti. Voting for Project Medishare through Chase Community Giving on Facebook is a quick, easy, and free way to help Project Medishare receive the much needed funding to continue our important work in Haiti!

There are 17 days left to vote in the Chase Community Giving! Vote today and spread the word!

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By Jennifer Browning

Yesterday, Alonzo Mourning and Erik Spoelstra of the Miami Heat, Rudy Gay of the Memphis Grizzlies, and several representatives from Target were among those joining a new batch of volunteer relief workers going to Haiti to work with Project Medishare.

The group toured the tent hospital, helped distribute items to families including Shelter Box tents. The Shelter Box donation was an additional one from the 10 tents that were donated to those who participated in the Cisco Teleconferencing Project.

After the distribution, the group visited Bernard Mevs hospital in order to see the permanent structure where Project Medishare will operate starting today.

Earlier in the week during an interview on 790 The Ticket, Mourning spoke about the important work Project Medishare is doing in Haiti. The Miami Heat legend has been a huge supporter of Project Medishare’s efforts since the January earthquake. To listen to Mourning’s interview on The Ticket click here.

Children hold care packages donated to families at the Project Medishare field Hospital. Photo by Jennifer Browning.

Representatives from Target distributed items to familes at the Project Medishare field Hospital. Photo by Jennifer Browning.

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By Jennifer Browning

Project Medishare began fitting amputee patients with prosthetics at the beginning of April. As part of Project Medishare’s Amputee Rehabilitation Program, volunteer Certified Prothestists Orthotists (CPO) not only go down to work each week with amputee patients at the Project Medishare field hospital, but they have also been training locals to be prosthetic technicians.

CPO Mark McVicker said he really enjoys working with patients at Project Medishare’s field hospital.

”It’s a privilege to work with patients that are so thankful for all they have left and for everything you do for them,” he said.

Mark said that while the team is doing good work, that they are limited since they currently don’t have a prosthetic lab in Haiti.

“There’s a huge need for prosthetic fitting here. When we have the laboratory [in Haiti] we will be capable of doing more things, for the moment we are very limited, it’s working but it’s a fact that we could have be doing more with a real prosthetic laboratory.”

Cedieu Fortilus is training with volunteer Certified Prosthetic Orthotists to become a certified prosthetic technician. Photo courtesy of Laurene Leger.

Cedieu Fortilus, 34, began working with volunteer CPO’s when prosthetic limbs began arriving at the field hospital in April.

“The training is going well with Cedieu, he’s a fast learner, and he’s also our interpreter,” Mark said, “we are getting him up to speed, but there are already a lot of things that he can do already.”

Not only does Cedieu fit patients with new limbs, he will also take care of coordinating future prosthetic fittings. Cedieu is provided with the amputee patient’s contact information in order to reach them to make an appointment for their fitting.

Cedieu has already learned how to prepare a prosthetic leg, adjust it for the patient in order to connect it to different components of the patient’s leg. He is also assisting patient’s with basic physical therapy exercises, as well as teaching them how to use their new prosthesis in order to help them feel more comfortable using their new limb.

Cedieu said he is excited that he is able to help at the field hospital.

“I like the fact that I’m helping the patients,” he said, “that I’m helping my fellow Haitians.”

Before being hired by Project Medishare, Cedieu was a health agent with Oxfam at Hospital Clinic in La Croix Perisse, he also had part-time work as an interpreter for the UN/Minustha, the Navy, and the US Air Force.

“I’ve being helping for the past 11 years as an interpreter for some medical groups. I’ve been in the medical field for so many years now, so that’s why I feel very comfortable in this job,” he said. “I like my job as an interpreter because I feel that I’m helping the doctors that are coming here to help us Haitians. I can bring comfort to [the patients] when I help with the communication, because I help the communication pass better between the patient and the doctors.”

With his translating skills, he is also able to talk to the patient in regards to helping them understand what their prosthetic limb can do for them.

“Many times I see a patient that thinks that because they have an injury from the earthquake, like an amputation, they think that it’s over for them, that their life is done, and that society will reject them,” he said. “I try to help them understand that with this new limb, they have a second chance, and a chance to have a better future.”

Cedieu realizes how important it is to have prosthetic technicians in his country, and he is eager to continue learning. He said he is eager to continue his education and learn how to perform the more complicated fittings.

“I want to have a better knowledge in fitting prosthetics, and I am happy that Medishare is helping me,” he said. “I hope that Medishare will start training more Haitians to be prosthetic technicians.”

It is important to have local prosthetic technicians on the ground, not only to do the initial fitting, to change a prosthetic limb in the future. For instance, if a technician fits a prosthetic today for an 8-year-old, that limb will need to be replaced when the child turns 12 because the kids are continually growing.

Cedieu said would like to see Haiti have a real rehabilitation hospital, especially for patients with spinal cord injuries.

“With a rehab facility amputee and spinal cord patients can get help in order to get back to their old life….a better life.”

*Laurene Leger contributed to this story.

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By Jennifer Browning

In case you missed them at Dadeland Mall two weeks ago, Haitian-born Bogosse founders Patrick and Fabrice Tardieu will be attending a special appearance event at Nordstrom Aventura tomorrow, May 8, between 1-5 p.m.  While there, they will be featuring their  Limited Edition Collection, L’Union Fait La Force. Bogosse is donating 50 percent of the proceeds to Project Medishare.

Bogosse founders Fabrice and Patrick Tardieu at the Nordstrom Galleria in Dallas where they introduced their Limited Edition shirts L’Union Fait La Force. Two more personal appearances will be held at the Nordstrom at Dadeland Mall, Miami tomorrow, and at Nordstrom Aventura, Miami on May 8.Photo by Jennifer Browning.

We have been told there is a chance that Project Medishare supporter, and former Miami HEAT basketball player, Alonzo Mourning will make an appearance as well.

This collection, which debuted earlier this month at the Nordstrom Galleria in Dallas is very special to the Patrick and Fabrice. Tomorrow you can meet the men behind the label who are hosting an in-store Nordstrom public appearance to launch the line and to promote their relief initiative with Project Medishare, whose ongoing partnership with Bogosse will help both organizations stand by and support the people of Haiti.

Only 600 shirts have been made in eight different styles; 75 shirts per style. The inside labels of the back collar boast the colors of the Haitian flag. The line will be carried in three locations: Nordstrom Galleria, Dallas; Aventura, Miami; and Dadeland Mall, Miami.

You can see this beautifully detailed Limited Edition collection along with Fabrice and Patrick at Nordstrom in the Aventura Mall tomorrow, May 8.

Click here to see images from their debut of L’Union Fait La Force at Nordstrom Galleria, Dallas.


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