In Septemeber 2008, I traveled 6000 miles to Haiti's Kenscoff mountains. My mission: to care for some of the orphaned and abandoned, the sick, malnourished and premature infants of this beautiful but beleagured Caribbean nation.

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

A Place of Refuge

Tuesday is weigh-in day at the main house, and there was a quiet sense satisfaction in the NICU as each child's weight was announced, then charted in the blue ring-binder.

Sarah: 4 weeks old is up to 5lb 12.5oz
Rosena, 5 months old, has recovered past the swollen stage of her malnutrition. The skin is hanging from her arms and her thighs, but she is gaining weight. She is up to 5lb 13.5oz.
Frantz: 10 days old, arrived yesterday weighing 8lb 12 ounces. His weight today is 8lb 13.5oz.

When Sarah and Rosena arrived, it was immediately obvious to all of us, that our orphanage in the Kenscoff mountains was a life line to them. But why would a gorgeous, fat, healthy and thriving newborn like Frantz need GLA, we had all wondered? Magaly, the Haitian administrator explained:

Frantz was brought here yesterday by his anxious mother. Last week, a premature baby from the same remote mountain community that Frantz is from, was murdered by a Father who insisted that since the date of the infant's birth did not correlate with the date of conception, this child was not his. This week, Frantz' father levelled the same allegation at Frantz' mother. The new mother was tortured by gory visions of her son's future. Our Haitian administrator was equally disturbed at the possibility of what may happen to the baby. Really, it didn't bear thinking about. She couldn't live with herself if she turned the mother and child away, only to hear on the radio a few days later, that the child was dead. Magaly honoured the Mother's request, and admitted Frantz.

So for our newest baby, GLA is a place of safety, and a refuge. I hope that when you are grown, Frantz, you will understand that your Haitian Mother made what she believed was the best choice for you. This was a decision underpinned by phenomenal love and great faith. I hope that you will cling to this. I hope that your mother's sacrifice will be affirming to you. It is a measure of what you are worth.


r. said...

I will pray for the mother's safety. I can only imagine what type of violence she has probably experienced from this man so far, to leave her in such fear for her baby's life. I hope she is safe.

Leah said...

I have followed ur blog for a long time now and hope to volanteer at gla some day...reading this post what stood out for me was the weight of the 5 month old weighs the same as the 4 week old!!!

Has Frantz mother given him up for adoption ? or just for care and a safe haven for the time being? The though that he is not safe from him own father....god bless them all x

mbs said...

OK, that has to be the most adorable photo ever! Sarah smiling, Rosena ready to cry and Frantz trying to suck on Rosena's hand. It just makes me smile :)

Blessings for you and your staff as you bring peace and health into the little ones' lives.