This trip grounded me as a person and allowed me to come to terms with the ugly realities of impoverished communities. It is a problem that can not be solved overnight, but I truly believe in the ripple effect and I look forward to joining the mission again as a provider. The team camaraderie was essential to the success of our trip. There was never a dull moment between us. The pleasantness and hospitality of the community brought out a brighter side in all of us. I am extremely thankful for the providers who came on the trip. I could not have asked for better role models and could only strive to emulate their passion and enthusiasm for medicine.
My first impression of Haiti was far from what my mind pictured prior to stepping foot off of the plane that flew me from my comfort zone into the unknown. I was begged several times by my family to reconsider coming and bribed to just wait, but for the first time in my life, I felt god calling me and I made the decision to answer. I didn't know how I would make it happen, but I trusted and he came through. Haiti has more beauty than I think anyone in America would ever realize. It is so much more than a place of poverty, but a community of people that work together for one goal and relish in the joy they find in their everyday lives. I don't think anyone back home will ever understand just how thankful I am that the people of Haiti allowed me to be a part of that even if for a short amount of time. I have felt more joy in the five days I have been here than I can remember in my life.
I was given the opportunity to explore my love for medicine and my love for giving back at the same time. It was honestly a privilege to have been given a chance to shadow, learn, and grow in my experiences with each practitioner and physician at the clinic. I learned a great deal and engaged my mind in all of the things I have learned but never put to use. I was able to see patients who may have only needed minor things to us in America, but for the people of Haiti, it can mean the world to them. My love for children and infants grew only stronger over these past days as well, and the way Dr. Keen interacted with them was heart warming. The patience and love the providers showed the people was an beautiful thing that will carry with me.
I hope that this trip sparks my heart and allows my relationship with God to grow stronger. I hope that when I get back to America I can remember the things I learned here and the experiences I have will carry me to push forward in my endeavors. I will definitely work harder to find the joy and life, and when I catch it, I will never let it go.
Thank you for this amazing opportunity.
The trip overall was a complete success. I loved the education I obtained from the experiences in the clinic. I loved all of the different positions I had and different cases I saw. Everything really touched my heart. Some of the cases were harder than others and I wish that I could do more for them. I did not anticipate the amount of poverty that I saw. I knew that it was bad but I had no concept. The trip was definitely an eye opener and life changer. It reaffirmed my passion for medicine and I will be back next year.
I have been so blessed to be able to have been a part of this mission. I had the experience of having two other missions through my church under my belt, so I tried to go in having goals. Not knowing the team was a struggle for me because I am an introvert. By day 2 however, I knew that this was going to be a wonderful experience. The medical aspect of the trip was everything I had hoped for. I was able to practice my skills I have learned through nursing school and enhancing my pharmacology education by giving the medicines first hand. I truly believe that God was able to work through all of us, bring us health, strength, and the ability to do his work here in Haiti. I am nothing but thankful for all we accomplished.
Kailey Jo Smith
This trip has been incredible for me in so many ways. I have never experienced anything like this before, and the knowledge I have acquired from this trip is far beyond what I could have acquired from reading a textbook or listening to a professor's lecture. Being able to watch medical professionals interact with patients, while also gaining hands-on experience that would be very hard to come by in the United States, and learning about medications and what it is like to work in pharmacy. I would not trade this experience for anything, it was humbling and challenging, and I learned something new every day. I will return home with a different view on life and with an invigorated view on the power of medicine and collaboration in a professional setting toward a common goal.