For the past several years, Alex Ruzanic, Director of Youth Ministry and Missional Outreach at Beulah Presbyterian Church has coordinated mission trips to Cap Haitian during which they stay at the Joshua House.
The group’s most recent trip was particularly special as they got to witness the ribbon cutting and opening of the Community Hospital IDADEE (CHIDA) that is located on the IDADEE grounds, just a stone’s throw from the Joshua House. During their eight-day trip from November 8- 15th the group of 11 volunteers from Beulah also visited the New Hope Hospital in Plain Du Norde.
“The needs are far greater than any of the resources they have,” said Alex. “In Haiti, 250,000 people are without access to adequate health care and have to walk miles and miles to receive care.”
CHIDA officially opened its doors on November 12, providing much needed medical care to 300 people on the very first day of operation. The medical clinic is equipped with operating rooms, medications, and essential medical equipment. It is staffed by eight nurses and four doctors, including Dr. Wislyn Avenard, who grew up at the EBAC Orphanage and went on to earn his medical degree with the goal of being able to one day provide care for his community. CHIDA is a Haitian-run clinic that has created 51 local medical jobs. American and Haitian doctors work side by side providing affordable health care to adults and children, never turning away any patient despite their ability to pay.
Alex and the team from Beulah have been witness to the development of the hospitals during their travels to Haiti over the past several years. “We were overwhelmed and blown away by the change. We are always amazed by the Haitian’s ability to dream. They dream as big as their God can provide and as we know, that is limitless,” said Alex. “We are seeing progress. Even though there is a lot of poverty and illness in Haiti, God is moving among the Haitian people in amazing ways through this medical work.”
The Beulah Presbyterian Church plans to coordinate future trips the Joshua House in 2018. In addition to helping with the newly opened hospitals, the group is also hoping to be able to assist the Haitians with dental care. Church members also donate much needed soap, toothpaste and toothbrushes to the Haitians along with hand-knitted baby booties and blankets.