Haiti Response

Louisiana Baptists Helping the World

Buckets of Hope Update -- Coordinator Information

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Please make checks payable to LA Baptist Convention when dropping off buckets at designated points. Make sure to memo Buckets of Hope in memo field.

 

For any further information on Buckets of Hope, contact Larry Cupper at (337) 277-7720. Larry is now the coordinator for the Buckets of Hope project in Louisiana.

Thank you.

Buckets of Hope Labels

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The labels for the Buckets of Hope are in.

 We need  each drop off location to email us and let us know how many labels you need . One for each bucket.

Thanks,

Gibbie McMillan

Gibbie.McMillan@LBC.org 

 

Use of CPAP machines by volunteers in Haiti

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We need to immediately advise all state directors and incoming teams that volunteers that use CPAP machines the following:

 

AC power in Haiti is inconsistent because it is provided by generator with a battery backup inverter which may occasionally fail during the night.  This can result in there being no electricity for your CPAP or other medical devices that require electric power.  That means that we cannot guarantee that electricity for CPAP machines will be available.  CPAP wearers must note that if they are so dependent on their machines to the point where a loss of power will cause a life threatening situation for them then they must either;

 

  • Bring a CPAP that has a battery back up
  • Bring a battery with inverter that will power the CPAP through the night in the event that a power failure occurs. (Note it must be able to get through TSA screening for either carryon or checked luggage and the person is responsible for determining if their battery system meets  TSA requirements are not the IC)
  • Do not come if the loss of power for more than 30 minutes and no battery backup system would put the CPAP user’s life in jeopardy.
  • Come anyway knowing that if there is no power you could be at risk because you stop breathing for brief moments or you snore so loud that your room mates kill you. 

 

We are still limiting teams to 1 laptop and 2 cell phones per team to be powered or recharged on the CMBH house electricity as well. 

 

Buckets of Hope Packing Video

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How to Pack Buckets of Hope

 

For More Information and drop-off locations visit www.LBC.org/BucketsofHope
Dates for drop-off are March 12-15

Volunteer/Visitor Security Recommendations

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 Each year hundreds of volunteers and visitors join us in our work in Central Asia.  We are always encouraged by having you folks join us, even if just for a brief time, in advancing the Good News to the peoples we have come to serve.  Most of these volunteers come as a team from fellowships in the US, while others are visiting us as family or friends. 

While you are with us we want to ensure that you have a successful trip while remaining safe and secure.  This is easier to accomplish in some areas of our region than others.  We have found that the most effective security and crisis management activities are those that prevent unwanted occurrences, or reduce the impact/consequences of unpreventable events. How one reacts to an unfolding security crisis can have a large impact on the eventual outcome. Adequate preparation and training (proactive steps) help individuals respond appropriately (reactive steps) during a crisis. Taking the time to “train” our volunteers/visitors is one of the most valuable and effective proactive steps we can take.

I.  BEFORE YOU COME

A. Your Volunteer Team Leader of your group is your leader, but when you join us on the field, the Pamiri Team Leader should be listened to for guidance.

Please complete this Volunteer Info Sheet:

Note to Volunteer: We will NOT share personal/health information unless it is an emergency.

Name:

Gender:

DOB:

Medical issues we might need to be aware of in an emergency:

Allergies (food and medicine):

Any physical conditions that prevent you from long periods of driving/riding on very rough roads, much walking, carrying your own luggage?

Have you had surgery recently? Just because your Physician has released you for travel does not mean that he has an understanding of just how rough the conditions are here.

Occupation and position:

Emergency name and contact information (phone and email) 2-3 contacts, and please list their time zone as well.

Blood Type:

Medications taking:

Recent Surgeries (within the last 3 months)

Overseas Experience: Please list the places you have been and how much time spent there

Other helpful information:

Attach a copy of your passport

Passport Number:

D. you have insurance? Does your insurance company cover a medical evacuation from Tajikistan? Most will not, but the company that we use (Adams & Associates.)  will insure you as an addendum for your personal insurance.

E. Immunizations.  It is wise to have had these shots before you come:

Hepatitis A

Hepatitis B

Typhoid

Tetanus

Polio

F. Safety can begin with packing

 

“What to Bring” or “Packing Guidelines” list:

Copies of passport identification page and visa—and KEEP THEM SEPARATE from your passport

Copies of your airline tickets—keep with passport and visa copies

Leave a copy of your itinerary with family or friends

Health Items:

Bring what you need.  Your favorite brand is likely not available.

Bring all prescription medications you regularly take-BRING IT IN YOUR CARRY ON !!! ( if it is a liquid you will need proof of your prescription for TSA in the USA)

Over-the-counter medications, vitamins and minerals you normally take

Avoid the appearance of affluence (Do you really need that large bottle of……….. from Sam’s club while you are here? Our people are not used to seeing large containers of much of anything..)

Clothing recommendation(s)/suggestions: Western clothing is acceptable. Men wear loose pants and long or short sleeve shirts. No shorts please!

 In addition to some LOOSE pants/jeans, women must bring LONG skirts/dresses and blouses to wear on visits to the village. Find skirts that you can wear modestly while sitting on the floor- no higher than mid-calf, and perhaps choose clothing a size or two larger than you would normally wear. No midriffs, no tight skirts or above mid calf, or short sleeved tops. Best if pants or leggings are worn under the skirt/dress. Scarves are worn but are inexpensive here and make cool souveneirs as well.

“What NOT to Bring” list

Leave your jewelry or irreplaceable family objects at home

Do not wear t-shirts or jewelry with religious slogans or symbols.  

Do not wear t-shirts or other items with a political agenda

Leave US flags & pins at home

Leave all unnecessary credit cards at home – this is mainly a cash society. ATM’s are a new thing, use ONLY after seeking the advice of a team personnel, as not all are trustworthy.

Traveler’s checks are not negotiable here

Any materials that could hurt your—or our—work here should be left behind.  This means any materials that link you back to any “religious” agency or organization.  It is not uncommon for bags, purses, and wallets to be searched and these materials could pose a threat.

Religious Tracts, extra Bibles ( of course bring your personal Bible!)

H. Useful Information:

Large crowds are to be avoided.

Men and women do not touch in public.

Voices in public are moderate. Do not call attention to yourself by using a loud voice.

 It is illegal to take photos in the Dushanbe airport & of policemen, soldiers on the road, military installations & including guard posts along the road as you travel. When taking photos of people, it is polite to ask. Most will grant permission willingly. Also we would be glad to print some of your special photos so you may give them to your new friends you make here.

While crime in general is low here in Badakshan, one needs to pay attention while still in Dushanbe. Pickpockets abound in areas where people are crowded together and foreigners frequent. Men, keep your wallet in your front jeans pocket. Ladies, a medium size purse- strap over the shoulder and held under your arm works well. It is a good idea to have separated your monies into at least two different places in your purse/wallet. Dollars in one place, and local Somoni in another place that you can easily access.

Americans are generally admired here, they have not seen many tourists with loud voices….

I.

As you know, this trip is not like others that you may have taken.  You will be traveling to a part of the world where converting to another religion can be dangerous.   We are considered a restricted access country.  We ask that you please maintain a few security guidelines when planning and promoting your trip.  Please substitute “Central Asia” for the destination of your trip for publication and advertising – web sites, Facebook, state and associational newspapers and announcements to your fellowship, TV, and radio.  Prayer support emails should not be forwarded, or printed & posted in a public place.

 

A Reminder: The trip starts the moment you leave home and doesn’t end until you are back at home.  You should exercise the same caution in all airports and any cities you may be traveling through that we exercise in-country.  It should be assumed that the people around you understand English and their conversations regarding the trip and their experiences should be appropriately guarded. Many people understand English MUCH better than they speak it.

 

Pointers to share with the volunteers/visitors:

Know WHY you are coming and stick to it. -  You are coming to help us with a project, or you are a tourist, or maybe you are coming just to visit us. Please if you need clarification on this, consult with us, before you fill out any forms.

Don’t answer questions about other people.  Let them answer themselves and tell their own story. Do not share information about workers that live in-country. A useful phrase is “I don’t know “Glen” that well, let me introduce you to him.”

Don’t give more information than asked.  Simply answer the question.  For example you are asked, “Where are you going?”  Good answer: “I am visiting a friend in the Tajikistan.”  Bad answer: “I am visiting a friend in the Pamirs.  His name is Glen H.  He works there.  Then we are going to cross the river to Af..”   Another example:  “Are you an American?”  Good answer: “Yes.”  Bad answer: “Yes, and I am going visit in Turkey, then I will be going to Tajikistan.  We will be doing witnessing wherever we go.”

In any of your answers you should not mention that this is an M trip or even remotely indicate it is or that you are visiting an M - even in airports, including the US.  Do not refer to the field personnel that live here as an M.  It is better to strike this word from your vocabulary.  Start now referring to people who live here as “workers.”

When arriving in Tajikistan you might be asked the following questions.  

Q: “Why are you coming to Tajikistan” A: “To visit your country.”

Q: “Where are you staying?”  A: “With a friend.”

Choose a code word or phrase to be used when someone on your team is talking about something they should not be talking about or are talking too loudly. This should not be something silly that would make the group laugh or that would attract too much attention or else people who where not listening before might begin to pay more attention to them.  Let us know the code word that you have chosen, we might need a reminder as well!

Protect the identity of nationals who are believers.  They may yet not have shared with their family, co-workers or friends that they have become Christians.

Try to avoid using the word “Christian” to refer to yourself.  It is better to say Follower of Jesus. The word Christian in this area means Russian Orthodox, not particularly a bad thing, but Follower of Jesus means something much more relational and hence desirable.

While in travel be very cautious in mentioning organizations such as your home fellowship, our home office, etc.  Do not make it known that you are even connected to such an organization. Once you are here, you may say that you are with such and such a church if it comes up in conversation. If you are a pastor, while you are here, say so, again if it comes up in conversation. Religious leaders are honored.

We cannot stress this enough.  It is just, if not more, important to be security minded at airports and on planes.  Visitors have been heard on planes and restaurants to loudly say, “Yes, we are members of such and such church and yes, we know so and so, and we are looking forward to our M trip.”   

Communication Guidelines for sharing:

Please do NOT:

Publicly share that you will be visiting Tajikistan

Do not print or put on the internet that you will be visiting Tajikistan

Do not put in any type of newsletter or publication that you are visiting Tajikistan

As you develop your prayer support, you may want to be more specific in what you share.  Then there is the “inner circle” of a very few highly trusted people.  These people pray for you continually, and are very much a part of the work.  They know specific details and are very trustworthy.  BE SURE to explain to all your prayer supporters the security guidelines about your trip that you’ve been given so that they will not share in inappropriate ways what you have told them to pray for.

Sometimes people do not understand how small the world is and how quickly news travels.   Please do not jeopardize the work we have been called to and more importantly, please do not put into jeopardy the national believers that we work with.  

The earthquake site has obviously made the news on the internet. Let’s not add to the connections to be made.

J.  Share with them possible questions that they may encounter and give them suggested answers.

 

What will you say if you are asked… (Give possible contextually appropriate answers)

Where are you from? USA or your state

Why are you here? Tourist or coming to help with such and such a project

Can you help me get a visa to America? no

What is your work? A general answer

Who do you work for? truth

Where does your money come from?

Are you an M? no ( not in their understanding anyway)

Are you a Christian?  (Mind you, they are thinking of the Christians they know, which may not be what a real Christian is.)  Follower of Jesus might be better

What is your religion? Follower of Jesus

What do you think of the prophets/leaders of other religions? Now is not the time to lecture as to how wicked so and so may have been. An answer of, “I don’t know much about him, do you, and can you tell me about him?

Have your read other holy books? I have read the Injil ( New Testament) the Tavrot ( the Torah) and if you have read part of the Koran, you wouldn’t need to hide it.

What do you think of the local women? They are nice, mannerly.

How much money do you make? It is a culturally acceptable question here, maybe give an after taxes figure.. or say, I don’t have too much left after taxes, which will get a laugh and get you off the hook.

Why did Americans bomb Iraq? “I am just an ordinary person, I don’t know why the men in the government do things.”

What do you think of the war in Iraq? Hope it will be able to be over soon..

Why do Americans love Israel and hate us? Americans don’t hate the people here. You can hear all kinds of things on the television.

What do you think about our religion? I don’t know much about your religion, can you explain what you love about it to me?

What do you think about our country It is beautiful, fine weather ect.

What do you think about our president/leader? Maybe ask about him from the questioner. Remember it is illegal to criticize the president, or other members of the government.

Where are you staying? With friends – don’t get specific

How long will you be here? answer

How much did ____ cost?be prepared, it is culturally ok here for someone to inquire the price of most anything.

How much do you weigh? Same here

How old are you? And the same. It is only rude for a younger person to question an older, unless maybe with admiration in the tone J

K.  Who will the stateside Media Spokesperson be for the volunteers if a crisis occurs? Please decide this beforehand, and let us have their contact information. 

L. If you do not travel with a laptop, we will be able to let you email your families. The connection is slow, pictures are difficult to send, but you’ll be able to let them know that you have arrived safely. While we are still careful not to share every detail online, our email is secure or you will be able to access your account online. MSN and Yahoo have proven to be difficult to access here, Gmail is not quite so bad.

M. We do have a cell phone that you may use to contact your family. We don’t encourage long chatty calls, as the system is NOT secure and one must always assume that someone could be listening in. If you choose to bring your own cell phone, if you have a quad-band phone it should work.  

Instructions on how to contact us. Our phone number is 011-992- 93-597983 (from the USA), if you are dialing from Turkey, dial 00- 992-93-597983. If you have a major travel delay that would delay you for a day, while still in the USA due to a missed flight, please call ASAP. Our time is +5 GMT but should an emergency occur, do NOT worry about the time difference.

As a foreigner entering Tajikistan you will be given a small document to complete before you go through passport control.  We will provide you with a copy and with relevant information filled out before you come. You will fill out both sides, they will take one at passport control, and you must retain the remaining half in a safe place until your departure when you will give it to passport control there.

If your bags are many, there are usually young fellows that in the airport that are willing to help you- they will want a tip, wait until you are with us outside and we will help you pay up.

Should your luggage be lost or delayed, it is handled in another building, we will help with that, notifying the proper personnel.

Never make jokes or side comments when going through customs.

After you have made it through customs, you will be facing the exit door, whereupon many taxi drivers are thronging the door. “Joy Te” with a smile will work wonders and you will be able to see  us standing outside waiting on your arrival.

  •  Security Training Video - A security training video for volunteers has been developed called “Safe Travel Solutions - A Faith Based-Training. The video is designed to aid you as a short-term team to:

-travel more safely and securely

-better support long-term personnel by knowing and following security protocols

-understand what information is confidential and how best to maintain confidentiality

-increase survival of a crime or an act of an unfriendly foreign government

-better coordinate information flow during a potential crisis within a volunteer’s own family, team, sending group, and the media

This video covers six sessions and comes with a Leader’s Guide, a Student Guide. For more information their website is www.safetravelsolutions.org and their phone number is 1-866-289-5505.

 

Medical, student teams headed to Haiti

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Medical, student teams headed to Haiti
Feb. 25, 2010
 
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The placement of Southern Baptist volunteer teams in Haiti is beginning to accelerate as new sites for involvement continue to be identified.

A medical team from Nebraska, a student team from Georgia, and a medical team with professionals from various states will be working in different locations around Haiti in the coming weeks, said Jim Brown, director of the U.S. office of BGR. The team from Nebraska will be first to arrive in Haiti on Feb. 27.

"Southern Baptists have responded to the crisis in Haiti in a powerful way through their giving and now through their going," Jim Brown said. "As we look to assist the Haitian population through medical assistance and community development, the projects we identify meet short-term needs with a big-picture perspective. Our approach is to have a tangible answer to the needs of the people - now and in the months and years to come."

Baptist partners from Haiti and the Dominican Republic are coordinating with Southern Baptist relief workers to identify project locations and places for volunteer teams to use as a base of operations, said David and Jo Brown, BGR directors of the relief efforts in Haiti.

A large portion of BGR's focus will be to displaced Haitians living in temporary, makeshift camps. According to a recent report from the United Nations, the number of people who have left Port-au-Prince since the Jan. 12 earthquake has increased to 597,801 people from the previous figure of 511,405. An estimated 160,000 persons have come from Port-au-Prince to the border area with the Dominican Republic.

At one camp in Haiti's mountainous region, "People were blocking off small quadrants with sticks, stones and tape, and small stick frames were being tied together for very small houses," Jo Brown said. "The whole mountain is full of people setting up houses. Tarps, tin, sheets, whatever is available is being used and they are burning the fields to create more room."

The Browns returned four days later with Haitian and Dominican pastors and found the camp had tripled in size. "This type of settlement is repeated over and over in Haiti," David Brown said. "Most, like this settlement, have not been engaged by any relief organizations. This is the ideal location for BGR to establish community development projects."

BGR volunteer medical teams will work from the facilities of Love a Child, a Christian humanitarian organization and orphanage located 30 minutes from the border with the Dominican Republic. Injured Haitians flooded to the facility following the earthquake, Jo Brown said.

"Outlying hospitals are still transferring patients to Love a Child," she said. "They have surgery suites in full operation and a large number of pediatric patients, many without families. Families of other patients have set up a tent city on the grounds of the property. The two medical teams we have coming to Love a Child will be a tremendous help."

Tangible needs for relief and development at BGR project locations are being met through the distribution of $255,000, which will be used for food distribution and shelters.

According to David Brown, the project involves BGR and the Dominican Republic Baptist Convention (CBD) partnering with four Haitian Baptist churches in Port-au-Prince to extend emergency aid and assistance to empower 16 other Haitian Baptist churches to minister in their respective communities.

This project involves six food distributions, personal hygiene items and supplies for temporary shelter over three months. Each food distribution will provide food to feed a family for about two weeks.

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To donate to the Haiti relief effort, please click here. Every dollar given will be used 100% in relief efforts conducted in partnership with local Baptist churches.
 
A downloadable bulletin insert raising awareness about relief needs in Haiti is available at gobgr.org.
 
*information posted from Baptist Global Response AlertNet

Medical Mission Team Needed

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We are currently in need of 7 medical people to travel to Haiti on our 3rd Medical Mission Trip.

The dates for travel will be March 17-25.

If you are interested please email Gibbie McMillan at Gibbie.McMillan@LBC.org 

 

Medical Team - Day 2 Summary

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Louisiana Medical Team Update

The LA Team is doing well. We were awakend this morning (Tuesday after 1:00 a.m. by two additional aftershocks and we had one on Monday. We remain confident in the Lord and continue to Pray Psalm 16:8. We will be leaving shortly to set up the Medical Site near  the center of the earthquake. It is now a large tent city.

 

LA Baptist Haiti Medical Team Mission Update 2 February 22 The morning begin with team members who were not yet up and ready for the day literally shaken out of bed at 4:25 am by an aftershock following the January 12 earthquake. Once things settled down and we were cleared to go back in the house you could hear a variety of sounds outside the Florida House where we are bunking down during our time in Port Au Prince. I heard sirens for more than an hour and then I heard people near on the streets singing “Blessed Be The Name of The Lord” in French.

Because of the aftershock activity around the house increased early and we were having breakfast before 7:00 and the Medical Team left for it’s site by 7:30 am… I give Praise and Glory to Jesus Christ for bringing together a talented team of Doctor’s and Nurses who all have a great work ethic.

The clinic was set up and ready to start seeing patients about 8:30 a.m. We gathered with the Medical Staff and Interpreters and prayed together as we begin seeing patients. While the doctor’s begin their work I went out and spoke to the two hundred plus people already in line to see a Doctor. I told them that we came because of Jesus Christ and that Jesus loves them and that we love them and we are honored to serve them today. I then worked through my translator Dorvill as we began sharing the story of Jesus with those in line waiting to see a doctor using the NAMB tract for French Speaking people. Once we presented the Gospel to all the people in line we went back into to the church being used for the clinic and helping the doctor’s. In between helping out I was asking my translator about his personal relationship with Jesus Christ and he told me he needed to have such a relationship but was too big of a sinner. I shared with him that we are all sinners and that is why we need Jesus. I can tell you that Dorval accepted Jesus as his Savior and Lord.

 

Well the Medical Mission team was hard at work seeing patients, praying with patients and presenting the Gospel to them. The treatments were varied among the people and   the Doctor’s saw 280 patients. We thank God for the people we were able to treat with various diseases today and for those we could share the Gospel with today.

 

We had three other members of the team go and visit and pray with pastors. They encouraged people, prayed for people and checked to see if their home and church was secure. They were witnessed a man accepting Jesus as Savior.

At the end of day we drove by the Palace, a couple of universities and Cathedral that sustained a lot of damage. We also went on the grounds of a makeshift hospital and visited the Pediatric Care Units.

 

Our final report for the day was that we saw 280 patients, we witnessed seven people accepting Jesus Christ as their savior and Lord and we had four others ask us to pray for them and for a revival in the land.

 

Thank you for your continued prayer support. I am sending you a few pictures from the day. I will send more later.

With a Grateful Heart,
Jay

 

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Disaster Relief Chaplain Life Ends While Helping Others

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Disaster Relief Chaplain, Mr. Ollie McGlone's life was celebrated by family and friends at Colfax Baptist Church on February 18, 2010.

Mr. McGlone, a 75 year old layman, went home to be with the Lord as a result of an apparent heart attack while driving home from helping a widow who was a member of his church family. He was reported missing on Thursday, February 11, around noon. His truck was discovered the next day by a pastor friend down a bayou embankment, with his body still in it.

Just a few days before his departure from this earth, he stated to his wife that he wanted to go help the hurting people of Haiti. His last act on this earth depicted the kind of godly man he was -- always helping others! He will be long remembered as an humble servant and for his Christian service to those who were hurting in disaster situations! He exhibited what a Disaster Relief chaplain truly was.
 James M. Carson
 LBC Disaster Relief 
 Chaplain Coordinator

 

Haiti Teams Needed

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HAITI

 

The Louisiana Baptist Convention, working in conjunction with other Southern Baptist entities, is in the process of sending teams to assist with Disaster Relief in Haiti.  The opening of the Port au Prince airport will make it much easier to get teams where they are needed.  As we are able to secure additional housing and address security issues we can send in even more teams to assist with recovery.  Below are the current needs.

 

Date Medical teams  (8)   Inspection /Chaplains (see note below) 
02/21 – 03/01  1 0
03/05 – 03/13 2 2
03/08 – 03/17  2 1
03/14 – 03/22  2 0
03/17 – 03/25 2 2
03/20 – 03/28 2 2
     

 

Inspection/ Chaplain team  consist of  2 inspectors and either one or two chaplains ( your choice)

With teams flying into PAP there is flexibility to the travel dates a day or two each way. 

If you have teams to fill any of these slots, I would love to hear from you. Please email me at Gibbie.McMillan@LBC.org 

We hope to soon be looking for Repair team but there is NO DATE for that to begin.

THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN FORMING A TEAM

Harsh living conditions,  challenging weather, security, There is still much destruction and death so please only send mature Christians in good health physically and emotionally  who are willing to rough it and be culturally sensitive.

 

Thank you,

Gibbie McMillan

Email:  Gibbie.McMillan@LBC.org 

Buckets of Hope Update

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A new drop off location for the Buckets of Hope program has been added for Pineville, LA.

You may drop off buckets in the Pineville area at Trinity Baptist Church.

Their address is 3905 Trinity Church Rd., Pineville, LA 71360.

 

Buckets will be accepted at this location March 12th, 14th from 9:00 am - noon, and March 15th.

Call 318.445.3000 for office hours for the best time to drop off buckets.


Thanks,

Christi Bates

DR Haiti Training Rescheduled

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******ATTENTION*****

The DR Haiti Training that was scheduled for today, Thursday, February 11th has been rescheduled to Saturday, February 13th at 9:00 am at the Baptist Building due to weather.

 

It is important for all who will be deploying to Haiti next week and in the future to attend this cross cultural training meeting.

 

For those who will be deploying next week,  you will be receiving your credentials and insurance papers as well as your shirts and caps.

Thank you,

Gibbie McMillan
Christi Bates