Albany church's ministry helps Haiti

Wesnie Albert (LEFT) is a nurse. Andrice Pierre (RIGHT) was born and spent his childhood in Haiti.
Wesnie Albert (LEFT) is a nurse. Andrice Pierre (RIGHT) was born and spent his childhood in Haiti.

By Karen Cohilas - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) – A group of Doctors, nurses, ministers, and other volunteers from Albany helped treat one thousand people on a recent mission trip to Haiti.

But when they left, the need for care didn't go away. Now, they hope to return and build a permanent clinic in Cape Haitian, the city they visited on their mission.

Stand Up Again is a missions ministry at Rhema Word Church in Albany. They were scheduled to go to Guatemala this month, but when the earthquake hit Haiti, they couldn't ignore the need.

Andrice Pierre has been in the United States most of his life, but he was born and spent his childhood in Haiti. "That's my home, of course. Regardless I'm a U.S. citizen, home is always gonna be home," he said.

And when he saw his home in shambles, he had to act.  "It's actually my duty to go back and respond to the situation."

Wesnie Albert, also from Haiti, felt the same way.  "Haiti is my home, so it was only my duty to help my brothers, sisters back home," she said.

Albert is a nurse, but her medical training in Albany, was nothing like what she experienced when she went back to Haiti. "It was very emotional," said Albert. "They need a lot of help, they do. It was a blessing to be able to help."

And help they did. The Stand Up Again mission team with Rhema Word saw about 200 people each day. Broken bones, cuts, bruises, other injuries that weren't all physical.

"We also saw a lot of psychological damage as well," said Dr. Mike Satchell. "People who are depressed, people who weren't able to sleep because of the aftermath of the Earthquake."

The more help they gave, the more people came. "There was just a tremendous need. Once people found out that we were there, we were overwhelmed with people seeking medical care," said Satchell.

And the need hasn't gone away just because they left.  "We left filling as though we wish we could have been there much longer and done much more, but we are honored and thankful that we were able to even go," said Maple Williams.

And they will go again. They hope to set up a medical clinic to help care for the needs of the people.

The mission group hopes to return to Haiti early this summer. Plans for a permanent medical clinic are in the early stages.

They hope to collect money and other resources from folks in Southwest Georgia to help make it a reality.

©2010 WALB News. All rights reserved.   Feedback