I have to apologize for the delay in getting a blog post to you. I have been very busy, and time has gotten away from me.
The Prices left to go to the States the day after the last post. So, I’ve been by myself to keep all the clinics going these last four weeks.
I returned to Michigan for 10 days at Christmastime. It’s the one week a year we close all the clinics. During those 10 days in Michigan, I had 21 appointments to meet with family, friends, and supporters — it kept me on my toes! I returned to Haiti on a Sunday afternoon and clinics resumed on Monday.
The clinics have been very busy and we have had four teams help us during these last three weeks. I also spent 3 days in the hospital with a patient (more on this, later in this post). I have also made a few house calls … AND I have helped five Americans in the last 20 days. Whew! With the help of a visiting doctor and my ultrasound machine, we were able to save one missionary from an expensive, unplanned trip back to the United States.
So please excuse my delay.
Things have been going well in the clinic and there have been no shortage of people to be able to bless through you and your faithfulness to the ministry of Kelby’s Kids!
There was a tremendous outpouring of support with giving Tuesday, year-end giving, and the vehicle fund! I am truly blessed and humbled by your love and support!
I am pleased to announce that we have received the money needed for a vehicle for Kelby’s Kids! Now we simply continue to wait for the government paperwork required to be able to purchase it.
In addition to the large funding for the vehicle, you’re continuing to support the day-to-day operations of this ministry. And, on a daily basis we are changing lives and bringing hope to so many.
One of the littlest wound-care patients in a while was this little man.
He put his hand into a pot of boiling bean sauce and burned it to the point where he “degloved” it. (Degloving basically means that most of the skin on his whole hand peeled off in one piece — like a rubber glove).
He had some trouble the first time or two, but, after he figured out the system, he was a very good patient — anticipating how he needed to hold his hand so we could care for it.
His hand has healed very well and he should have little trouble with it as he gets older!
Weak, fragile babies continue to be one of the things that strums my heart strings the hardest. We frequently have babies in the medical, malnutrition, and maternity clinics that need some extra help. So, holding them, feeding them, and loving them is always a precious time for me.
The little guy above needs a little extra help, simply to eat.
He’s so tiny that he can only eat for few minutes before he gets tired. So, to increase his milk intake, mom is pumping to give him additional milk (other than the formula) during the time he’s awake and able to eat.
Hopefully in a few weeks he will be able to go back to breastfeeding.
We have been graduating many kids from the malnutrition program in the last three weeks!
It’s exciting to see these kids go from malnourished to healthy with a stop into our clinic each week. The price of the formula and Medika Mumba is well worth it when you see the kids become health and the joy it brings to the family.
This little girl graduated last week when she made it to her goal weight!
One of the moms in my maternity clinic was only 15 when she had her baby. She wasn’t sure what she was going to do. She was torn between keeping the baby and giving it to the orphanage.
After working with her for, Mom decided an orphanage was NOT the best place for her baby — and she wants to keep him!
We have also had a lot of graduates from the Maternity clinic in the last couple weeks.
One mom recently contacted me through my translator. The mom said she was bleeding. I told her she needed to go to the hospital. (At the Kelby’s Kids clinic, I’m currently unable to help Moms with her particular kind of emergency.)
The next day she walked to the clinic from the hospital carrying her IV bottle. She had been discharged because her bleeding had slowed down. I advised her that she needed to go to another hospital.
We could still hear the baby’s heartbeat. But, the mom’s placenta was becoming detached, and without proper treatment, the baby could soon die — and she could as well.
She said she had already been to the hospital and she would just go home for now and rest.
Unfortunately, a few days later, she started bleeding again. And, this time, as she was being driven to the hospital, she died from blood loss.
It’s sad that she was unable to get the help she needed. The medical system is very broken here for those who can’t afford private care. The maternity clinic is making a big difference for many, but unfortunately, we can only do so much, and we won’t be able to save them all.
That’s why we always share the love of Jesus with our patients. So they can always have His gift, which is better than any level of medical care.
Not too long after I got back to Haiti, I was setting in my room one evening when I was told one of the kids from the REV Home (a nearby orphanage) fell and dislocated his elbow. I always hope was my hope that it was dislocated and not fractured. When I got to him it was pretty evident that it was a bad fracture. We took him to the ER for an X-Ray. You guessed it, a significant fracture.
Amber, the director of the Rev Home, wasn’t in Haiti. She was in the states.
I worked with him for his care while in frequent contact with Amber through Facebook. We moved him to another hospital for his surgery.
His surgery took five hours and I spent a lot of time pacing in front of the entrance to the operating room. They kept coming out and telling me to “go sit down, the boy is fine.”
After three days in the hospital, I was thankful when Amber arrived from the states! It’s such a struggle when you’re never really even sure about the quality of the private medical care in Haiti.
I am happy to report that the surgery went well. He seems to be healing well. I’m praying that he has no long-term issues with his arm or his elbow after this is all done!
2018 was a great year for Kelby’s Kids and I am looking forward to 2019!
I try to be a good steward of your funds with my travel expenses. It is a delicate balance though. It’s very difficult to get any rest, relaxation, and recharge while in Haiti. So, time away is important, because you can’t pour from an empty cup.
But it’s also very important to speak, raise funds, and stay connected with people while in the States. I spent 305 days in Haiti last year helping as many as I could! I made three trips to Michigan in 2018 for an average of 20 days per trip.
I will soon have my residency permit (which also allows me to get my vehicle!) so I will not have to be worried about the length of my stays in Haiti, but I would like to continue with a similar schedule like I had last year. I believe it will help stay emotionally and physically healthy.
As I said in the beginning, I am blessed beyond measure by your support which allows me to do what I am doing in Haiti!
When I started Kelby’s Kids back in early 2016, I wasn’t sure if others would be drawn to my dream and the passion I had for Haiti. But you HAVE! And I hope that by reading these blog posts, and seeing the faces of the kids and families, you can hear, see, and know the difference you have made!
It feels wholly inadequate, but all I can say is THANK YOU!
Until No Child Dies