As we approach our fundraising deadline this coming Tuesday, November 29, we are still far from our goal. On this special holiday, we need your support more than ever to help Midwives For Haiti keep our promises to all the midwives, mothers, and babies in Haiti who rely on us for education, health care, and hope.
My first few trips to Hinche to train nurses in midwifery skills were in 2006 and 2007. Each time I would spend a week with nurses who would drop all that was going on in their normal lives and come to classes with me and other volunteers. Their normal lives consisted of what they called “commerce,” trying to sell things in the market in order to make enough money to buy food. They were like the majority of other Haitians who scrape to make a living each day and do not know if they will eat tomorrow.
At the end of each week, our team would fly in a little Cesna from Hinche back to Port-au-Prince. On Saturday mornings we would arrive at the airfield and always be surprised that students were there to see us and say goodbye.
At the end of the first trip, I told the students I would come back but they were probably skeptical. Many Americans are moved by what they see in Haiti and say that they will come back. But, not many do.
Before I came back the second time, many other volunteers had come in the months between and the students started having a light in their faces. They started having hope.
It pained me to see that hope. What if Midwives For Haiti could not fulfill our promises? What if we could not come back no matter how much hope we or they had?
As we took off from the airfield in March of 2007, I looked down at several of the students -Bien Amie, Josette, and Maxine- sitting on the grass and waving good-bye to us. I sobbed all the way on the flight to Port-au-Prince. I sobbed when I unpacked at home. I cried because I wanted to keep the promises I had made to these women and did not know what the future held.
We’re celebrating our 10th anniversary this year and those women are employed, they’re able to feed their families, send their children to school, and were the first women in Hinche to own their own motorcycles. Every day they- and over a hundred women like them- work harder than anyone I know, delivering life-saving health care to women in Haiti in circumstances you and I could not endure.
These women still look at me with hope in their eyes. Midwives For Haiti is still delivering on our promises. But it is because of you that we have changed the lives of hundreds of women and families in Haiti. Half of our annual budget comes from individual donors and your support has kept hope alive for so many. Thank you.
We need to raise another $105,900 by Giving Tuesday, Nov 29. If you haven’t done so yet, please make a tax-deductible gift to keep hope alive in Haiti. With your help, we can keep delivering on our promises, empower hundreds of women, and save tens of thousands of lives each year.
May your Thanksgiving be filled with abundance and hope.
Nadene Brunk, CNM, MSN
Executive Director + Founder
Midwives For Haiti