In our summer 2015 newsletter, we told you the story of ICC's partnership with the Jolitrou community. ICC's health journey with Jolitrou began in 1994 when the organization expanded its community health outreach to the this northern town, nearly 14 miles from Cap-Haitien. In 2007 a clinic was built.
To read the entire newsletter click here.
Continue reading below for an except about the Integrated Community Health Program.
Integrated Community Health
Remote villages of rural Haiti, like Jolitrou, are breeding grounds for disease; the result of poor sanitation, inadequate nutrition and overcrowding. One in 12 children in Haiti will die before the age of five from a preventable disease. ICC sought out to change this reality for Jolitrou through child vaccination. ICC inoculates against highly contagious childhood diseases, including diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough, polio, measles and tuberculosis (TB), through ICC's national TB program.
Community health workers, like Viergene Duvot, act as health advocates. "I make 20 home visits everyday to follow up with patients and counsel them on their health concerns," Viergene says. "Once a week I go to schools and churches to spread health awareness and encourage people to visit the clinic." Every second Monday, Viergene and her fellow health workers have community meetings where they distribute food and educate the community about pressing health issues, which has helped to change the local culture surrounding sickness. "Now, instead of visiting voodoo priests, the people in the community will come to us," says Viergene.
The prevention of cholera through proper hygiene and sanitation has also been an important part of their health education, as nearly 10,000 Haitians have died since the 2010 outbreak. "Water is still the biggest health concern in the community," says Viergene. In Haiti, 29% of Haiti's 2.3 million people do not have access to safe, drinkable water. ICC has provided the only well in the community.
"I remember what life was like before ICC," recalls Viergene. "So much sickness, so much death. We cannot go back."
Plea for Jolitrou
ICC can no longer provide consistent healthcare for this community. We need your help. The people of Jolitrou need your help. Remember the words of community health worker Viergene about life in Jolitrou before ICC: "So much sickness, so much death. We cannot go back."
ICC, as well as the Jolitrou community, is searching for ways to maintain the clinic. It is in need of monetary and developmental support to become sustainable and to continue to empower its people and the community. For one nurse to staff the clinic in Jolitrou it would cost an estimated $4,500 per year. To completely staff and support the clinic the annual estimated cost is $11-13,000.
With your generosity, we can continue to build toward a healthy future for Jolitrou. As the Haitians say: Bondye do ou, Fe pa ou, M a fe pa M. "God says do your part and I'll do mine." Please, donate today.