RESPE: History and Timeline

Program News | Posted Apr 30, 2009

November- January 2008

- Students planned first trip to Haiti.

January 2008:

- RESPE: Boston’s assessment trip. We listened to Balan’s priorities, which included health, education, and finance; met with community leaders; and established RESPE: Balan, which guides our research and identifies local resources and needs.

Spring 2008:

- We strengthened our Boston ties with our current partners, the Christian Haitian Entrepreneurial Society (CHES), Engineers Without Borders (EWB) at Tufts, the Haitian Coalition (HC), and the Tufts MPH Program.

February 2008:

- Three undergraduates from Balan joined us in Boston to participate in the Institute for Global Leadership’s Symposium on Global Poverty and Inequality.

July and August of 2008,

- Members of RESPE: Ayiti; EWB; Linda Martinez, a Tufts Community Health professor; Douglas Glandon, a Tufts MPH alumnus; and Franklin Delambert conducted fifteen health-related focus groups in each of the Balan's six regions. Participants discussed ailments from malaria, typhoid, and parasites, to common symptoms, such as fever and headaches. They felt isolated from health services and information.
- Other members, conducted research on commerce and secondary education.
- Engineers Without Borders (EWB) joined RESPE to conduct soil and water tests.

Fall of 2008:

- RESPE: Balan and RESPE: Boston came up with the Grassroots Health Initiative (GHI) as a means of addressing these pressing needs. The GHI is the first step in communal ownership of health through first aid training, disease prevention awareness, and midwifery.
- Also connect with Tufts campus through first General Interest Meeting, which drew at least 25 non-members from the Tufts student body.

Winter 2009:

- RESPE applied for 100 Projects for Peace to earn money for a mobile health clinic this summer.

February 2009:

- Three university students from Balan visit Boston for three weeks. They attend the IGL's Symposium on Global Cities; meet with local organizations and individuals, including the Somerville Haitian Coalition, Tufts faculty, and an MPH student; spoke in classrooms, including Steve Cohen's Education 101, as well as, presented at a benefit dinner and gallery opening.
- The benefit dinner drew from the local Haitian community and raised about $580 in in kind donations.

March 2009:

- Had a one month gallery show in the Slater Concourse Gallery of Aidekman Arts Center featuring photographs, videos, research papers, a GPS map of Balan, and a social map created by the community of Balan.

April 2009:

- RESPE is holding a benefit dance at Sagra, a restaurant and bar in Davis Square, to raise money for our summer project. RESPE is applying for the Clinton Global Initiative Outstanding Commitment Award.
- Presented project to Partners in Health.
- Spoke at the Undergraduate Research Symposium.
- Will speak after the MIT production "Antiretrovirals and Water Refugees: A Living Newspaper on Haiti".

Spring 2009:

- Continue to raise money to support their summer health clinic project, as well as, develop the project's curriculum and begin planning for the summer trip.
- Progress on website.
- Establish connections with local medical institutions for donations and training equipment

Summer 2009: Implement Grassroots Health Network.

May 2009:

- Pò Fransè residents along with RESPE: Balan will select trainees from their community for Grassroots Health Initiative
- Rose of CHES, RESPE: Ayiti and Pò Fransè will develop community health curricula
- Rose will select professional health trainers from neighboring areas

June 2009:

- Professional health trainers meeting Pò Fransè trainees and go over curricula
- Training begins under the guidance of Rose and RESPE: Ayiti
- A member of RESPE: Boston will stay for the beginning of trainings, about 1.5-2.5 weeks, to document implementation of trainings
- MPH A.L.E. student will also arrive for beginning of trainings and stay for 6-8 weeks to provide additional research, assistance, and documentation of GHI

July 2009:

- Training sessions will still be going on

August 2009:

- Training sessions should be completed and community health workers and midwife are ready to begin work within the community
- Community health workers organize one health event for the community based on health education and preventative practices
- A member of RESPE: Boston will stay to document start of GHI in practice
- Medical records system will also begin at this time

Fall 2009:

- Monitor and continue with Grassroots Health Network.
- Begin process of becoming a recognized Tufts student organization
- Hold more fund raisers to continue supporting the GHI check-ins

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