Category Archives: Healthcare

Throwing malaria out of Ugandan schools: the malaria hero’s !

andres-malaria1Malaria is being tackled in rural Ugandan schools with Dr Anrew Macnab’s remarkable early rapid diagnosis and treatment program delivered by trained school ‘malaria hero’s’, school staff especially trained.  Implemented by Rose Charities Canada’s  Dr Andrew and HEDA Uganda, the program is giving hugely successful, recorded results, cutting the absenteeism through sickness much hated by student and teacher alike.   Please click here to see the most recent paper on the marvellous results.

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Project Toolkit Samoa: Rose Charities NZ gets going .. !

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Caption: Rose Charities NZ chairperson, Trish Gribben examines a custom-designed “toolbox” which will carry delicate ENT instruments between Auckland and Apia, Samoa.

Project Toolkit” — ENT for Samoa

It’s for the little ones.” — Dr P.J. Faumui

Rose Charities NZ has an exciting new project – to take Ear, Nose and Throat surgery to Samoa, to help an estimated 25,000 children who need treatment.

“Project Toolkit” is the dream of a Samoan ENT surgeon who lives in Whanganui, Dr P.J. Faumui. There is no permanent ENT surgeon in Samoa and every time “PJ” (as he is affectionately known) visits his family in Samoa he conducts an ENT clinic at Apia Hospital. PJ sees about 40 or 50 patients a day but, without good medical instruments, is able to give them only very simple low-risk treatment.

So Rose Charities NZ has commited to Project Toolkit, a $45,000 set of top quality ENT instruments and the custom-designed trays which will make it possible to transport them between New Zealand and Samoa for visiting volunteer surgeons to conduct ENT clinics there. The trays, with silicone inserts to keep the instruments safe and secure, are designed to allow for sterilisation and for customs inspections.

PJ himself will head the team of volunteers, some of whom work at Auckland’s Starship Children’s Hospital.

Sheffmed, an Auckland-based medical equipment company is collaborating with the project. It has offered discounted prices and a vital role in maintaining and keeping the Toolkit safe when it is back from the tropical conditions of Samoa. Sheffmed will also liaise with volunteer doctors who are heading to Samoa.

Why has Rose Charities NZ, which has an international reputation for it support of eye clinics in Cambodia and Nepal, decided to focus on ENT surgery?

“Children who have untreated ear, nose and throat problems in early childhood, like “glue ear”, can be scarred for life,” says Rose chairperson Trish Gribben. “If they can’t hear well, they don’t do well at school, they become disruptive, they have behaviour problems. It’s not far-fetched to say untreated ENT problems can be a building block for an anti-social life.

“The children in Samoa are our neighbours. They deserve something better. The Kiwi Rose Trustees are really excited about PJ’s Project Toolkit. It fits Rose philosophy perfectly: Help a local person to do a grassroots project when a little effort can have a BIG impact,” says Trish.

“When I signed up with Sheffmed I asked PJ if he was thrilled,” said Trish. “His reply: “Well, it is for the little ones.”

“Rose NZ is hooked. Now we have to find the money. It is a big project for us as we are all volunteers. But we are delighted to be working with some Rotary clubs throughout New Zealand. And, through them, with the Harold Thomas Trust which is the legacy of the first New Zealander to be president of Rotary International, set up to provide health care for children in the Pacific. Harold Thomas just happens to have been my uncle — it is all a perfect fit, says Trish.

Rose NZ Retinal Surgical training team to Rose Cambodia Eye Hospital

20150705_175911Images from the groundbreaking June 2015 Rose Charities NZ retinal surgical training team visit toDr Vra and Natalia’s Rose Cambodia Eye Hospital. June 2015. With retinal surgeons Dr. Muhammad Khalid, from Hawkes Bay and

Mike Webber (GNZM) examines a patient
Mike Webber (GNZM) examines a patient

Dr Rob Weatherhead .

This enormously successful visit organized by ike Webber (GNZM) Optometrist of Wanganui NZ , and funded by generous NZ donors resulted in a major upgrade of retinal surgical capacity in the excellent facilities of  the new international standard hospital   built by Dr Vra. The original Kieng Khleang clinic remains to help meet the huge demand in Rose Cambodia’s services to the poor

Hawkes Bay Retinal Surgical Consultant Dr. Muhammad Khalid in hands-on training
Hawkes Bay Retinal Surgical Consultant Dr. Muhammad Khalid in hands-on training

More images

Rose Charities 2014 end of year Review

Rose Charities International Network:
2014 End of Year Review.

2014 for Rose Charities has been marked both by consolidation in which the well established projects have steadily moved forwards with new initiatives, plans and their implementation, and a considerable delivery of emergency relief for the Philippines. The moves towards increased self sustainability have made progress in a number of areas, notably with the Sri Lanka Medicare program including now a specialised Ear Nose & Throat (ENT) Centre, Cambodia, where Drs Vra and Natalia Heng’s Rose Charities Eye Centre now operates also from their newly built clinic and caters for both the paying, to cover costs, and the poor. Projecto San Gerado Costa Rica’s community programs incorporating tourist and local produce are, now as part of Rose Charities Canada an impressive example of what can be achieved.

Sri Lanka was very active in 2014, continuing to lead the way in microcredit initiatives. It has had to reduce its preschool program due to lack of funding but still manages to run the new cut-down program in this hugely essential area. ( www.rosesrilanka.info )

Rose Charities Sri Lanka wonderfully hosted the 2014 Rose VI International Conference which was a huge success allowing international delegates (UK, Canada, USA, NZ, Cambodia, Japan) and Sri Lanka guests to network, discuss and witness the excellent programs in their area. In addition many of the children in the area worked hard to give delegates marvellous entertainment of dancing and singing which was hugely appreciated by all.

2014 was actually the 10th year after the terrible Asian tsunami of 2004 and it is a true tribute to the energy, charity and dedication of Anthony Richard and his team that so much has been achieved in that time. Over these years, programs have included child and adult health care, post traumatic child counselling, sports for peace and education for all ages, from pre-school to higher education. Poverty reduction through micro-credit and vocational training are now noteworthy as well as special development programs for women.

One of the most notable achievements of 2014 was the re-birth of the Rose Cambodia Rehab Centre (RCRC) ( www.roserehab.org ) which was in final stages of closure though lack of funds. This was also one of the major successes of the Sri Lanka Rose VI conference when Ms Sophak Chim (RCRC Cambodia) discussed issues with a very supportive Rose Charities USA team (Rachel Greene, Arnold Sanchez, Dianne Johnston). Ms Sophak showed that despite the difficulties of physiotherapy being well accepted in Cambodia, the demand for the clinic’s services were on the increase. Rose USA agreed to continue and expand support assisted by Canada and the UK. Previously the main support had come from Rose Australia (the main original founder of RCRC) but this organisation has had to go into a reorganisation phase (possibly with a view to disbanding) due to lack of funding and director base. RCRC has now continued to be successful under new Director Ms Chhouen Putheary. (Ms Sophak continues to advise),

Informal linkage of RCRC with Professor Nous Saroms’s Rehabilitation Surgery department in the PPSC medical centre ( www.cambodiasurgery.info ) continues both in cross-referrals and consultations. In addition PPSC takes many elective medical students who often write to Rose Charities asking for placements.

The Hillman Fund of Rose Charities Canada has also continued its support for physiotherapy treatment and training in Cambodia through assistance to the Cambodia Physical Therapy Association (CPTA) , as well as assisting in eye surgeon training at the Rose Eye Clinic. ( www.rose-eye.info ) . The Eye clinic has now treated some two hundred thousand patients which will rise to close to a quarter of a million within the next year and a half. It carries out both treatment and training and runs a peripheral outreach program. It is amazing to see where this project has gone from both its origin in 1997 as well as its disaster of 2003 when it was 99% looted of all equipment and gutted by thieves. A huge amount of success has been due to the input and assistance, material, teaching, and consultative assistance of Rose Charities New Zealand, ( www.rose-charities.org ) notably Mike Webber and John Veale. Also of great assistance in the development of the clinic and earlier outreach program(s) with IRIS Cambodia (founded by same founder(s) of Rose ) has been Dr Basant Raj Sharma. ‘Basant’ has taken the past few years to open now his own surgical eye clinic in South Nepal which will include a charity treatment component. Rose NZ will be assisting with this program.

Rose Charities Malaysia ( www.myrosecharity.org ) and Rose Charities Singapore ( www.rosesingapore.info ) have continued their impressive programs of local assistance with health clinics, assisting seniors and children’s programs and delivering health services (Rose Malaysia ) to the indigenous ‘Orang Asli’ people in rural areas. Both organisations set wonderful examples of organisations very well integrated to directly helping those in need in their own regions and have impressive memberships of many volunteers prepared to give their time and efforts for others. Rose Charities in Vietnam with its outstanding history of aid programs both with community development and blind home assistance in the Hue area and orphanage support through Rose Charities UK ( www.rosecharities.org.uk ). Rose Vietnam is currently undergoing restructuring but has potential to carry on its work into the future.

The typhoon Haiyan disaster, although in Nov 2013, carried on its effects into 2014 as did Rose Charities efforts to provide assistance. This was achieved on a considerable scale for Rose Charities with direct assistance (medical team lead by Dr Collin Yong in Negros), and indirect though support to partners such as AMDA medical team(s). All phases of the disaster were assisted from immediate health issues through provision of emergency water purification and solar lighting. The work also included rebuilding the health clinic, the walkway access and a number of fishing boats. The island of Negros, Cebu and Leyete were assisted and this has continued to the present time now with support for a newly designed, typhoon-proof home building program with the ‘Movement for Liveable Cebu’ organisation. These homes have now proved their worth by withstanding the much more recent typhoon Haguput. To support this work considerable funds were raised in Vancouver and Richmond working in conjunction with several groups and charitable individuals, one of the most noteworthy being Mr Alan Yong, cousin of Dr Collin Yong.

While Rose Charities is not primarily an emergency relief organisation we have nevertheless been able to provide considerable assistance over the years during major catastrophes, invariably working on advice and in conjunction with local groups on the ground who have requested assistance. With no budget for advertising and promotion it is probable that well over a million dollars has been raised for the disasters we have been involved with, but more importantly, programs continue to this day in Haiti (sports and community assistance) Tohoku (Japan) (AMDA Health Clinic) and, Sri Lanka (see above) and (as mentioned above) the Philippines. What is more, these assistance programs have been invariably without large, expensive infrastructure and working at grassroots level with virtually all donated funds being spent on crucial basic needs.

One area which illustrates this approach is Rose’s assistance to the current ‘Ebola’ crisis. While the current epidemic is in West Africa the disease is endemic in other parts of Africa and has the potential to spread seriously. Early diagnosis, case handling and treatment is essential to increase survival chances and Rose Charities through the Hillman Fund is now supporting a Ebola health training program in Uganda together with Makere University, both in rural and urban Ugandan areas. Dr Andrew Macnab (Brighter Smiles) and the Hillman Fund, with the HEADA Organisation has also initiated a schoolchild early malaria diagnosis program run by the schools themselves. Early results indicate a considerable reduction in school absentee time generated traditionally by the disease.

The problem of safe birthing and motherhood world-wide is a huge one. The want of education, hygiene, medications and trained helpers claims a heavy toll in mortality. In some countries, such as Afghanistan, a maternal and/or neonatal child death occurs every few minutes. Rose Charities Canada is focusing on this challenge with the formation of its Safe Motherhood and Birthing committee which is partly supported by the Hillman Fund and linking with Rose Charities UK ( www.rosecharities.org.uk ) . Programs now include the impressive Guatemala Safe Motherhood ( www.safemotherhoodproject.org ) training project for local Comadronas (birth attendants) founded by Annette Borkent and Dr Ruth Brighouse. There is also a joint initiative in Pakistan with the Frontier Primary Health Organization and a linked program in Afghanistan with Tabish Health and Community Organisation. In this last case recent progress has now resulted in the first two trained community nurses working in one of the main refugee and displaced persons camps near Kabul. One possible future linkage of this committee is to assist with a new RCRC (Cambodia) incipient birth assistance program.

It would be impossible to end this brief review of the Rose Charities International Network programs, without mention of one of its largest areas: education. World Rose groups support primary schools in Madagascar (Rose Madagascar), Zambia (Malambo Grassroots), Uganda (4 schools – Stand Tall Education ( www.standtalleducation.org ) , Volset, and Brighter Smiles (2), ( www.brightersmilesafrica.ca ), Guatemala (Mayan Project of Dr Ellen Coburn www.mayanproject.org ) and Sri Lanka. In addition there are child education support programs in Uganda (Smiles Uganda founded by Mr Galib Kara), Cambodia and Sri Lanka, and a pre-school program in Sri Lanka also. There is higher education support in Uganda, Zambia and Sri Lanka. In the case of Sri Lanka, these programs have produced many graduates including those in medicine, engineering and law. Advanced training programs are sponsored by the Hillman Fund in Uganda and have included ETATS (Emergency Medicine Training program) as well as advanced GP training. In Cambodia students were assisted in accountancy training and now at the Rose Charities Eye clinic there is training of eye surgeons (assisted by Rose NZ and the Hillman Fund). The full title of the Hillman Fund is the ‘Hillman Medical Education Fund’ and this indicates the importance which is put on training by this Rose group. Many special ‘Hillman scholars’ have been supported over the years for advanced and/or postgraduate training. Earlier mentioned too has been the training of midwives and birth attendants. Vocational training programs in Sri Lanka and Uganda (Brighter Smiles) have helped many to find employment in all areas and there is in-house training in the Rose Sri Lanka head office in the management of programs including micro-credit and business planning. A novel peer-to-peer training program is also supported in Uganda.

Left to the end, but perhaps the most important element of all is fund-raising. None of the spectrum of great Rose projects mentioned could exist without the funding. Once again Rose persons continue to show themselves to be stars holding a panoply of the most varied, enjoyable and energetic fund-raising initiatives. New Zealand to New York, Cambodia to Costa Rica, Uganda to Guatemala, Zambia, Madagascar, Malaysia, Singapore, Philippines -all have, and continue to hold, events and occasions to raise funds. Rose’s very close partner organisation AMDA, in conjunction with Rose, has for the last 3 years held emergency relief fundraisers in Christ Church Cathedral Vancouver bringing in incredible virtuosos from Japan to play alongside local experts. Athletes ride for funds in the international Vancouver-Whistler Granfondo bicycle race. Events have included sponsored walks in Malaysia, musical evenings in New Zealand, ‘bling’ sales in Vancouver, street hockey tournaments in New York city, a ‘Bollywood dance training and performance evening in Vancouver and sponsored scrabble evenings. Rose Charities Australia even at one stage held a paper aeroplane- making and distance flying competition (one of the events I had a great personal enjoyment in attending) . For all these initiatives and also to our accounting teams who year after year assist with the so important baseline work to keep the organizations going – Bravo !… and a huge thank you.

It is very difficult in a limited ‘thumbnail’ report to present anywhere near enough information of the scale, achievements and diversity of the full Rose network. The above is really only a glimpse over its surface. The bottom line however is that all the programs and achievement are due to one overriding factor. That is the amazing people that Rose Charities is fortunate to be associated with. The network is not a centralised unit; it is, in fact simply a vehicle to help move forward the amazing work of individuals and their own groups of project supporters. The ‘Charity Rose’ award is, every year, awarded to one recipient only. There is no mandate for the awardees to be kept within Rose Charities, yet every year to date, this happens. The reason for this is that when it comes to assessment and vote for the recipient, the achievement and dedication of Rose persons invariably are simply the most outstanding proposed within and without the organisation !

No doubt 2015 will have its ups and downs. In an increasingly wealth-polarised world, however, the need for aid and assistance will not be diminishing. Rose programs will be needed more than ever. In addition the environmental changes of global warming may sadly mean increased natural disaster frequency and severity. Rose Charities now has a track record and experience level generated over its 15 years in formal existence. We are an organisation focused on the most direct assistance we can possibly give with the absolute minimum spent on admin costs. Every time disaster strikes we see many big charity organisations taking up large tracts of expensive media coverage, and most carry out excellent (though often very expensive) programs. Yet time and again, such as in Sri Lanka, Haiti and Tohoku, a year or more after the event, the smaller, grassroots Rose supported programs remain and continue to tend to those who have been affected by the event.

The 7th Rose Charities International Meeting 2015 will be held in the Proyecto San Gerado Costa Rica program site. (March 8 – 10 2015) – see ( www.rosecharities.info/events/rose7-info-pack.zip ) As with all meetings it is a huge opportunity to witness the projects and initiatives and speak to those who run them. In addition there are often amazing presentations of local culture that the average person will simply never witness. No donor money is ever spent on these meetings (unless specifically requested for that use) and delegates all pay their own transport and accommodation. They are informal and always prove a superb forum for networking and exchange of ideas. The meetings are not restricted to Rose personnel and anyone genuinely interested is invited to attend.
Rose Charities People and Programs span many ‘New Years’ – Lunar, Khmer, Hindu, Gregorian etc. The last of these however is now. So for this Gregorian New Year 2014/2015 let me take the opportunity to say ‘Bravo’ to all and everyone, givers, receivers (invariably the same thing), whatever involvement level. Its you that makes everything happen. You are magnificent and have my unparalleled praise and unreserved thanks.

me-abby-13Will Grut MD
Vancouver, Canada
31 December 2014

Busy Rose Charities Malaysia… !

Events for 2014
java-map4D/3N Trip to ROSE Shelter in Bandung!

Date: 23rd to 26th Sept 2014
Activity: Visiting ROSE Shelter

ROSE Charities Malaysia will be visiting Bandung Rose Shelter in West Java, Indonesia. Provisions and assistance will be provided….

Members, Volunteers & Friends are invited. For more details, kindly contact: Mr. Lawrence (C/P: 012 4882419)

Cost: Ground arrangement (RM650) including airport transfers, hill resort hotel accommodation, all meals, sightseeing and self-funded shopping spree!

Flight Options:
MAS RM650 (Penang -> KL -> Jakarta & return) or
Air Asia RM950 (Penang -> KL -> Bandung & return)

 

Visiting Orang Asli Camp

Date: Sunday, 12th October 2014
Activity: Health Screening at Orang Asli Camp
ROSE Charities Malaysia partner with Lions Club to carry out regular bi-annually Health Screening event at the camp in Tapah,Perak. Families will also be receiving Provisions and Clothing, besides Food and Beverages provided.

 

Festive Celebration! ( Deepavali aka Festival of Lights)

Date: Sunday 19th October 2014
Activity: Children’s Day Out

ROSE Charities Malaysia will be inviting 200 underprivileged children to a Fun-fill gathering to celebrate Deepavali, including games and other activities and goodies!
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Seniors’ Day Out (International Day for the Elderly):

Date: Monday, 3rd Nov 2014
Activity: A day Trip up Penang Hill

In conjunction with International Day for the Elderly, Rose Charities Malaysia will be hosting 500 Seniors on a half day trip to experience a Ride on new Penang Hill Blue Funicular Train (1st generation was the wooden train and 2nd generation was red-and-white train)

Guests of Honor including The Governor of Penang and his consort, The Chief Minister and spouse will be among other State VIPs attending the event.
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Children’s Day Party ( Universal Children’s Day)

Date: Sunday, 7th Dec 2014
Activity: Grand Party @ Penang Sports Club

ROSE Charities Malaysia will be celebrating Universal Children’s Day together with 1000 children from various Charitable Homes.
Children are the Future of Nation and the Citizens of Tomorrow!

 

Members Yet?

No problem, Volunteers or Friends of Members/Volunteers are all Welcome!

If you are interested in any of the above event, Please do not hesitate to contact any of the following:

rosecharities.malaysia@gmail.com

gimsanlee168@gmail.com

lawrence2419@gmail.com
Continue reading Busy Rose Charities Malaysia… !

Safe Motherhood Project Guatemala: another successful teaching visit..

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Annette Borkent demonstrates proper hand washing

We have just returned from another amazing time in Guatemala training further comadronas, (a.k.a. traditional birth attendants). We spent 2 weeks in a small town called El Rodeo in the Department of San Marcos. This town is situated in the western portion of Guatemala in the lowlands, near the Mexican border. We trained 55 eager students, the majority being comadronas who have been actively working, and the remainder, equal numbers of aspiring comadronas and volunteer ambulance attendants.

See  www.safemotherhoodproject.org

Once again, it was remarkable to see the students so intrigued by what they were learning. Their desire to learn was palpable! One of the important aspects of our training is for each student to do a real life interview and examination of a pregnant woman, to use their new knowledge that they have learned by using models and role playing. One of our comadrona students asked each of her patients to come to our course so that everyone in the course would have the opportunity to do a hands-on interview and exam of a pregnant woman. This was a huge gift for those who did not have a pregnant friend, sister, cousin or neighbour to join them for the private clinic which we set up as part of our course. During our second week, a pregnant student offered to have everyone watch Ruth did a live interview and exam on her as an example for the whole class. Awesome participation!

The course was very well received and we had a wonderful graduation ceremony to celebrate the students completing the 5 day courses. The mayor of El Rodeo supplied a wonderful meal for everyone present. We heard many times how much each student appreciated the course.

Since returning home, our team has already been asked to bring our course to 5 other towns! Our Guatemalan teammates will be teaching 3 of these groups throughout the coming months. We hope to be back in Guatemala for training of Trainers next year so that we can reach many more areas. We were unable to train trainers this year due to logistical issues. Our coordinator is working on getting everything lined up to do this for next Feb. We were also able to have meetings with 3 other NGOs in Guatemala in hopes of finding groups to collaborate with. One of these groups expressed a lot of interest in working together. We hope to find others as well in the coming year.

smp1We were excited to learn that the Minister of Health has asked for a meeting with our group in the near future and there is a real possibility that our project will be used as a model by other groups throughout Guatemala. Cenaida, our Guatemalan coordinator, is well prepared to make a presentation about our project. This will include the concept of having a registry of trained trainers and comadronas, at a national level, and to train all comadronas within Guatemala with our comprehensive hands-on course. We could then begin to divide Guatemala into regions with groups of trainers responsible for specific regions. Once a registry is formed, there could be a way of ensuring that trainers, as well as comadronas have a recertification on a regular basis, to keep everyone up to date. The doctor in charge of the doctors in the Dept. (state) of Sololá will also be present at this meeting to speak on our behalf. He has been a promoter of our course for the past number of years and has seen the benefits of our style of teaching. There will also be a representative of the Sololá Dept. of Development.

Things continue to unfold, and many more areas of Guatemala are still in need of training. Thank you all who have and continue to support  this project, helping many Guatemalans learn safe birthing skills and saving lives!

Neonatal Resuscitation Course Haiti: March 2013. Linda and Andrew Warner write.. !

Sunday, March 10th, 2013

Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.



Linda-Hard to believe I am back in Port-au-Prince for the fourth time since the big earthquake in January of 2010. I am grateful to be part of a Rose Charities sustainable project to facilitate a neonatal resuscitation course, as previously requested by many health care professionals in Haiti. On my trip last year I saw firsthand the need for neonatal support, as 5 babies died on my unit in a week at the hospital. Even though the care there was excellent, financial resources are limited, and the staff can benefit from supportive education, equipment and facilitation of resources. Rose Charities is building upon several other trips of surveying Haitian doctors and nurses, networking and teaching certification classes to now offer another day of certifying several trainers, and two full days of teaching a standardized neonatal resuscitation course to approximately 70 nurses and doctors from various hospitals in Haiti to improve care for infants and neonates in Haiti.  I am thrilled to have my 15 year old son Andrew with me filming a documentary about this project, and he is very excited to be here (it is great he speaks French!).  My heart was warm as we flew in today, and I was pleased to see that the airport has been completely renovated since I was here last April, further evidence that positive change is possible and it is real.

Monday, March 11th, 2013

Andrew – Today was “preparation day” for the big week ahead. I have to say it feels weird staying in an almost resort-looking type of place, when there’s so much else outside these gates that I am blind to. I was expecting to arrive at a dirt airport, then drive over to some small house to sleep on the floors. As  per usual in life, nothing is as expected. First of all the airport had a baggage system similar to ours with air-conditioned rooms and even a duty-free store, and considering I was expecting rubble, this was a huge difference. My mom said there have been huge renovations since she was here last, which seems like a good thing. Living in this… Resort/Hotel/Lodge… When there is so much poverty outside, feels wrong. I would feel so much better if I wasn’t so secluded from everyone, I wish I could live with the people rather than safely here. I have to say today was very relaxing though, it gave me a chance to rest from travel before the interviews ahead. I am so relieved to finally be able to stay in this beautiful country of Haiti, however even here, I am still facing first world problems and sometimes don’t realize that I am making them. Things like ” no wifi ” and ” uncharged electronics” really make me feel bad when I see people who have hardly anything living in tiny tents and sheds. I am excited for the week ahead and can’t wait to see and explore more of this amazing country.

 

Wed, March 13, 2013

Linda-the teaching has begun and we are bursting at the seams, having had to turn away many doctors and nurses from this neonatal resuscitation course. The first day was “training the trainers”,  11 doctors and nurses who are assisting with two full days of teaching fresh students! This was a crazy day…on a break we were getting a tour of the hospital and happened upon a 27 week old premie that was blue and in severe distress. Our team sprang  into action and got that baby’s little heart beating again!  Sadly, the baby will not likely make it as there are many other complications, but it was a good team effort, and reminder of what is possible with adequate education and equipment.
Today was a full day of teaching doctors and nurses the NRP course, and we put to good use the trainers we taught on the first day.  The students are so keen and appreciative of the course it is a joy to facilitate!  Andrew and Michael interviewed the head of Pediatrics along with a nurse and 2 pediatric residents, who they had very distinct and insightful observations about health care in Haiti and how best to support it (stay tuned!).
Tonight I ate giraumon (pumpkin) soup, a Haitian specialty dish, and it was delicious! Although I am not a beer fan, I am loving the Haitian beer Prestige in the heat after a long day! My sister and nephew tried to order the Haitian delicacy of cabrite, or goat, but alas they were out :).  We also met up with Einstein Albert, who brought his beautiful Haitian bowls to sell. My new friends Doctors Marie-Josee and Genevieve from Montreal have been amazing instructors of the NRP course, and on top of keeping me in stitches have improved my French immensely!

Friday, March 15th, 2013

Andrew– this week was great. Tuesday, started us off filming at Dr. Lerebours’ office at Hopital Communaute Haitienne, where my mother worked right after the earthquake. Had a great interview with her and it was awesome to see her perspective. She also brought in a family with a Down’s syndrome child for me to interview. After about an hour we went with Jackie LeBrom on a tour around the city. Having lived in Haiti for around 15 years as a tour guide, she really knows her stuff. It was really awesome to see how much history that the country has, and yet very few realize it or even appreciate it. Haiti really is more beautiful than people realize. It is also a country with so any opposites, like poverty and beauty, people in desperation and people with hope. The sights, smells and sounds are also very intense and contradictory, like the smell of delicious food at the same time as rotting garbage piled high on the sidewalk. I kept thinking there was a fire outside every day until I realized it was the coal they cook with as so many of them do not have ovens, let alone homes. I watched a group burn tires as an act of protest. I thought that in a country with a culture so unique to the rest, even the protesters were different from any I have ever heard of. I had a good interview later with Jackie, especially with her outside perspectives.
     The next day we spent filming RoseCharities’ neonatal resuscitation program interviewing students and doctors all around. It was an experience unlike any other to be able to feel progress almost as if it were tangible, mainly because the impact is so lasting, and the students in theclass were so appreciative. I am also so thankful for our healthcare here in Canada. I have to say it is crazy to be able to watch this develop as we are educating future pediatricians and doctors to actually be able to save babies’ lives when it wasn’t always possible before.
     Now we are in Wahoo Bay, enjoying the ocean’s wind and the marvellous sunset, here is truly one of the places where Haitian beauty is easily seen.
Sincerely,
     -Andrew Warner

Monday, March 18th, 2013

Linda-well, we took the weekend off to thoroughly enjoy the beauty of Haiti and the turquoise sea at Wahoo Bay! Beautiful gardens, fresh seafood, friendly people, Haitian music and lots of time to relax! Unfortunately, Andrew had gastro for half of the weekend, but my little filmmaker has been a real trooper! Wahoo Bay is about an hour from Port-au-Prince, and the resort is part of a rebranding program for emphasizing the positive facets of Haiti, for which there are many. As we have traveled through the streets, I am thrilled to see so much improvement and development since I was here following the earthquake three years ago! Many foreign countries have been frustrated with not seeing immediate change in response to a lot of donations, but in a country with little infrastructure one needs to have patience, and more importantly, faith. The people here have such a desire to participate in change, but it takes time, money, education, facilitation of skills and equipment, and above all, it is important to ask the Haitians themselves their priorities and needs, instead of a multitude of well meaning NGOs storming in with contradictory ideas and assumptions. It’s all about empowerment. The philosophy with Rose Charities has been focused on “a hand up, not a hand out” and “teaching a man to fish”, based on a needs assessment survey to the Haitians themselves, and that is why I am proud to be part of this project.
 
      

Tuesday, March 19th, 2013-Lespwa

Linda-these are the faces, the hearts that haunt my soul…the reason I come back to Haiti…again, and again, and again, and again. Since visiting the beauty of the sea on the weekend, we have traveled to film at several hospitals in Port-au-Prince. We interviewed nurses, pediatricians and medical directors, along with families whose children have conditions that are usually treatable, fixable, or preventable in Canada. We wanted to assess the greatest needs for health care according to the people of Haiti, and to gain insight as to how we can best support that as a country, as a charity organization, and as fortunate human beings that are blessed to have just been born in a different place.
As much as my friends back home have nicknamed me “the Icewoman” for rarely shedding a tear back home, I cannot say the same is true in Haiti. It broke my heart to see children with hydrocephalus (swelling on the brain) that could have been easily prevented with access to a neurosurgeon, to see babies with disease related to malnutrition simply because they were starving, children with typhoid or other vaccine preventable diseases, and babies that didn’t survive simply because the doctors and nurses who are keen to learn do not have the training or the equipment to save these lives. The little baby I hold in the photo above has spina bifida, and his surgery was delayed for over a month because Haiti has no pediatric neurosurgeons. The worried mom was overjoyed when I told her my beautiful 17 year old niece Katie also has spina bifida, and has a wonderful life, playing sports and doing well at school with a gazillion friends, and that she even just got her driver’s license with an adapted car! Our discussion gave this mom hope, which in Creole is “lespwa”, and that is the basis of survival for this nation.

Excellence in Education: Uganda March 2013

Kampala, Uganda, will see Rose Charities, partner organizations, supporters and anyone interested meeting to discuss and hear presentations on education and health training.   Rose Charities organizations ‘Brighter Smiles‘  and Stand Tall Education will be the main organizers but input from others such as the Hillman Fund , HEADA , Greater Learning is anticipated. Topics will be widespread but cover such interesting areas as peer-to-peer education, health promoting schools (Dr Andrew Macab is an expert in this field), goal focus  and enrichment of the education process, and new health promoting and training initiatives. There will be visits to the project sites of Stand Tall and Brighter Smiles, and (on Sat 9th) a strong discussion involvement by school children themselves.  The goal is to educate and increase the practical  knowledge base of participants, network and update on current areas of success in new health and education initiatives.

The conference is open without charge (up to a certain seating limit, after which a charge may be requested ) to an genuinely interested and/or group representatives.

Download program and information sheet and registration form   nb these sheets will be continually updated so please call back and repeat also)

Christmas thoughts for Rose Vietnam

 

 

 

 

 

Dear Quizzers:Thank you for supporting the Rose Charities quiz night.The funds we raised will provide continued education to the 200+ children in the Mahastara school in Madagascar, and support for the 50+ street children in the Rose VN school in Thanh Tien. We also provided Saturday lunch for approximately 30 at the Union Gospel Mission with the Quiz Night left-overs!Below is one quiz category on Vietnam that we did not get to on Quiz Night:

Question 1: How much does it cost to provide a university scholarship for a gifted Vietnamese student? (Answer: $400)

Question 2a: How many street children in Thanh Tien are receiving an education and a hot meal everyday from Rose Vietnam? (Answer: 50)

Question 2b: How much does it cost to support these children? (Answer: $25/month)

Question 3: Thanh Tien suffers extreme poverty because:

a) It was bombarded with Agent Orange in the Vietnam War.

b) It is battered by typhoons and winter storms annually.

c) It was caught in the cross-fire of the North/South armies

duringthe Tet offensive.

(A: All of the above)

Question 4: How much does it cost to provide basic vaccinations for 4 children in Vietnam? (A. $100)

Question 5: What is the cost of building a brick home for an extended family in Thanh Tien? (A. $2000*)

*Rose Vietnam receives support from a Canadian Company -PEB Steel, who have committed to providing the roofing on all construction in Thanh Tien.

Please keep these answers in mind as Christmas approaches. You can give the gift of education, sustenance or shelter in the name of a friend or family and we will send them a card on your behalf. If you, or a group of your friends, decide to support a brick home for an extended family in Thanh Tien village we will happily put your name on the home, eg — “Donated by the Dunbar Book Club, Vancouver, Canada”. Rose Charities is a registered Canadian Charity: tax receipts are issued for all donations over $25.

For more information on the Rose Vietnam please visitwww.rosevietnam.org

For more information on Rose Madagascar Mahastara please visitwww.rosemadagascar.org

Below is a detailed report of the Rose Charities Vietnam Thanh Tien community project which outlines our plan to lift this village out of poverty. If you have a moment, please read it… our goal is to raise $25,000 to make this happen. You’ll be amazed at how much we will accomplish with that much money.

Thanks again, and we look forward to seeing you at next year’s Quiz.

Jan and Cathy

 

Rose Vietnam Community Development Project

For 400 years Thanh Tien village has been producing beautiful hand-made paper flowers. These flowers are particularly significant during the lunar new year holiday (Tet). Before the war Thanh Tien village thrived from the sale of these flowers, which were popular and much sought after throughout the country. But this village has not recovered from the devastating effects of the war, compounded by the damage wrought almost annually by typhoons and major storms.

In 2010 Rose Vietnam was approached by Thanh Tien’s Chief and village elders for support to revitalize this indigenous craft. They feel this renaissance and the related stimulus to tourism will alleviate poverty by creating employment opportunities, particularly for young people, many of whom are currently forced to leave home in search of work.

Rose Vietnam has set out a three-pronged plan to implement the project:

PHASE I

1.Refurbish the facilities where the flowers are currently made, which will also serve as a “class-room” for the flower making classes offered to tourists.  Provide funds for the local villagers to purchase quality materials for the hand-made flowers.  (This has been partially accomplished)

2.Initiate training programmes for guides / translators (ESL essential, and other languages), hospitality, marketing and accounting courses.  (Deferred for lack of funding but is a high priority).

3.Design the Welcome Center (This has been accomplished with the assistance of a local architect who donated his services).

PHASE II

1.Establish the Welcome Center, featuring a pictorial history of Thanh Tien village and the hand made flower-making tradition, as well as a coffee shop/restaurant and an outlet for visitors to purchase the flowers. (Pending).

2.Establish a Board to oversee the activities and growth of the project comprised of the village Chief, members from the local community and a representative from Rose Charities Vietnam.

PHASE III

1.Market to local, national and international travel media and operators. (Members of the Rose VN Board have personal connections with Saigon Tourism, the Saigon Times and individuals in the travel industry in Vietnam).

2. Prepare multi-language visual and written media re the history of Thanh Tien and the historic significance of the paper flowers.  This information will also be produced in Braille by the Rose Vietnam school for blind adults currently supported by Rose Vietnam.

3. Prepare press materials for local and national media.

Funding will provide ….

  1. Better quality materials (i.e. paper and dyes);
  2. An attractive Welcome Center where visitors can buy and/or learn how to make the flowers and learn about the history of this village and this craft;
  3. Training for young people in tourism/hospitality so that they can ensure the long term success of the project;
  4. Language training to act as guides and interpreters;
  5. Enrollment in accounting and business to ensure proper management; and, most importantly,
  6. Assistance with marketing and media to promote tourism to the village.

The timing for this project is serendipitous: Hue is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located on the central coast of Vietnam. In 2012 the Ministry of Tourism in Vietnam is promoting Hue through “National Tourism Year”. Statistics from the Vietnam National Tourism Board show that in 2011 international visitors to Vietnam reached almost six million; international arrivals in 2012 are up over 20%. Given that Hue is among the top five Vietnamese cities visited by foreign and local tourists, we can anticipate that a minimum of 15% of these tourists will visit Hue and Thanh Tien Village, which is located on the Huong River about 5km downstream from Hue and opposite the ancient town of Bao Vinh.

Through Rose Vietnam, a licensed charity in Vietnam, we have established a strong relationship with the elders and the village community and are supporting a number of projects in Thanh Tien. These include a school for blind adults, income generation programmes for the blind, a school for street children and the construction of brick homes for impoverished villagers who are either homeless or living in shacks. Rose Charities believes that a relatively conservative investment in the 400-year-old indigenous craft will lead to an improved quality of life and ultimately prosperity for this entire village.

Thank-You for your interest in our project!

www.rosecharities.ca

 

 

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