Jessica Jean-Francois, Program Manager, December 8, 2011
|Lormil Frantz, a community health worker from Grenodière, distributes Albendazole to the students at the primary school|
One year ago, Hope for Haiti launched its Public Health program, designed in response to a need for preventive education in the communities we serve. One answer to some of Haiti’s most prominent reoccurring illnesses is community education on the symptoms, treatments and preventive measures related to those illnesses. The team at Hope for Haiti had an idea to train some of the best and brightest members of our partner communities to hold lessons in the schools and be a beacon of health information in their communities.
Thirteen months later, Hope for Haiti has completed its own public health manual and trained 24 community health workers on topics ranging from hygiene and nutrition to prevention of malaria, typhoid and tuberculosis. We have implemented and managed first aid kits in the 12 public health schools and have distributed over 200,000 multivitamins, vitamin A, and Albendazole to their students. These vitamins and medications promote good nutrition and battle intestinal worms. Through the public health pilot program, both the young and the old receive training on how to keep themselves safe from illnesses and diseases and how to live healthier lives.
Last week, we celebrated the completion of our 6th and final module—based on the proper usage of medications. The Hope for Haiti Infirmary St. Etienne provides exemplary primary care to our partner communities, and our public health program is teaching the community how to expand upon that care. The public health program empowers people to make the right decisions in their diet and lifestyle choices to keep themselves safe and happy. Medications and antibiotics cure illnesses only when taken in the right dosage at the right time—a fact many community health workers learned last week and will teach the parents and the students they meet moving on.
After one year of working with these amazing community health workers and seeing the progress in the students at our partner schools, Hope for Haiti would like to say thank you to everyone who helps us make this program successful.
We work to improve the quality of life for the Haitian people, particularly children.