ICAP’s Charity Day team undertook very careful research before deciding how best to respond to the HAITI earthquake disaster in January 2010 which killed 230,000 people. The idea was to support a sustainable project with longer term benefits.
After assessing what the medium to long-term needs of the survivors were, it was decided to make a donation to two charities, of which Merlin was one. ICAP’s gift was to be used to support Merlin’s mobile clinics, so badly-needed, as the country’s infrastructure, including 30 hospitals, 20 clinics and the Ministry of Public Health and Population, was so badly damaged or destroyed.
Merlin has expressed gratitude and thanks to ICAP for enabling the provision of essential life-saving healthcare for the vulnerable. Merlin is now running 18 mobile clinics in nine locations across Port-au-Prince, the capital, seven in rural communities and two in camps in Petit Goave.
Each of these clinics is staffed with two doctors, five nurses and a midwife and led by a national staff team leader. These clinics obviously were even more important when cholera broke out last October. Merlin established a 60-bed cholera treatment centre in Port-au-Prince, providing round-the-clock intensive treatment for severely ill patients.
Merlin will be staying in Haiti for as long as necessary and ICAP’s donation will therefore be helping to increase the sustainability of the health system for the long-term benefit of the country, as well as preparing the local workforce to cope in future times of emergency.