WE DID IT.....we made it to HAS on October 31.....yahoo! The 47 people participating in the TREK2HAS walked, ran, swam, rowed and cycled a combined total of 4,450 kilometers, enough to get us to HAS and a 1/3 of the way home again. On top of that and even more importantly, for the maternal/child health program at the hospital, their efforts through self donations and fund raising reached above and beyond our goal of $7,200.00. The final results are not in as funds are still being sent in but we have capped the $9,000.00 mark. MESI ANPIL, THANK YOU, MERCI BEAUCOUP to all who participated and contributed. We could not have done it without you. I leave you with a picture of the hospital and a few of our trekkers smiling and celebrating the end of the journey.
Greetings once again to our followers. Only 6 more days to go until we complete our Trek2HAS. The team is in a holding pattern "on the Turks and Caicos" islands while we wait for some of our trekkers to catch up with their commitments. Many others are well ahead of the game but we don't wish to arrive ahead of schedule. This week pictures are included from participants in Port Dover who get to enjoy the fall views around Lake Erie as they trek about. Another is from Odette in Chipping Campden, England who is doing a good deed as she does her walk about by picking up garbage on the roadside....as she said " raising money for Haiti and doing clean up at the same time....a win win for all" . Our swimmer is still at it and she waves hello as she heads out the door for a few more laps at the local "Y". Can't wait to celebrate on the 31st when we arrive at the Hospital. Have a good week.
As I walked yesterday I got to reflecting on the various treks I took around the Artibonite Valley while working at HAS and thought I would share several of the stories with you between now and the end of our trek.
During my time there, HAS ran a health dispensary up in the mountains in an area called Terre Nette. Five other adventurous souls and I decided one Saturday that we would hike up the mountain "to see what we could see.". To help guide us along the way we had our intrepid guide Sainfira with us who by the way hiked the whole 9 hours, sockless in rubber rain boots....amazing! There were many highlights along the way, one of them being the standing ovation I received from my companions when I, who had lagged behind, finally huffed and puffed my over the crest of the mountain top.
Another was the small tour we got of the area from the Sisters who were stationed at the church, where we "camped out" for the night. They showed us a stagnant pond of water that they said was used by the local residents, for washing clothes and bodies. For drinking water, the folks of all ages had to hike an hour down the mountain to the nearest spring providing clean water. Each carried the size of the container they could carry back...from water bottles and gallon jugs to five gallon pails. Knowing the effort the people had to make to get clean drinking water really struck me. At one point along the way, I got so hot, I just took one of the bottles of water I had and dumped it over my head. Having heard the Sisters story, I couldn't help but think how wasteful I had been and had done it without a second thought. Never have I appreciated the availability and abundance of clean water I have had at my disposal, through my life, as I did that day!.
The boots put on a few more kilometers this week and how delightful it was tramping along the colourful leaf laden pathway. Another one of us had a different view as she hiked Dover Hill near her home in Chipping Campden, Gloucestershire, England. They sure are healthy looking sheep!
Some of us walked COVID style, safely distanced while others walked with those in their "bubble". This week a swimmer joined our ranks...good thing too as we are now on the ocean heading toward the Turks and Caicos Islands. I have to let everyone know that unfortunately Ethan lost his crown as the youngest trekker participating as we now have Gregory on board who is 9 years old. He is joined by his brother and sister who are 13 and 15 respectively. They all merit crowns though for their participation....hats off to each of them !
I'm happy to share pictures of some of several of our happy trekkers. First up Lea and Ethan (who is our youngest trekker at 11 yrs old......way to go Ethan!!! ) Lea writes: "My grandson Ethan and I are starting out on our daily trek to Haiti— he’s trekking with his dog Talley in Montana and I’m trekking in Ancaster, Ontario - raising funds for a great cause- Hospital Albert Schweitzer".......
Next up Brad and Elinor who have been putting some "miles" on their bikes the last two weekends. This week they got a little smarter and rode a route that was mostly downhill....having learned a lesson or two from the previous weekend when most of it was slogging uphill. ....good on ya!
And last but not least Hal and Adrienne trekking the Appalachian Trail.....no, not the one on the US east coast but along their street and neighbourhood in Hamilton on a beautiful fall afternoon.