| Jun 30, 2015
Gerard was desperate for a solution.
When he started coughing, he hoped it would just clear up on its own. With seven children to take care of, this Haitian father had to work hard as a moto taxi driver to provide for his family. Being sick was simply not an option.
Soon plagued by fevers, he began taking self-prescribed medications—with no relief.
After two months, his family became worried that something was seriously wrong. Instead of taking him to a clinic, they were convinced something else was to blame: evil spirits.
For $250—a lot of money in a country where the average income is less than $900—he met the local voodoo priest. His treatment? Gerard told us that for part of the treatment he had to strip down and stand naked in the street while being showered with water.
Unfortunately, it did not work. Soon, Gerard noticed something that made him worry: Not only did his symptoms persist, but his leg was swollen, too. Now, Gerard had seven mouths to feed, $250 fewer savings, and little hope for a cure.
He was filled with fear for the future. If he was too sick to work, how could he take care of his family?
Gerard finally received the help he needed to get better, and can now serve as a community advocate to encourage others to seek proper treatment.
Right when things seemed so desperate, a life-changing encounter happened—Gerard's neighbor, an MTI-trained Community Health Worker (CHW), arrived at the door.
Trained to recognize and intervene in cases exactly like this, he suspected tuberculosis and knew Gerard needed immediate medical help. He pushed and pushed—and finally convinced Gerard to visit a doctor.
Not far from town was an MTI-supported health clinic where he could get diagnosed. There, the CHW said, he may be able to find an answer. Desperate for relief, Gerard quickly sought help.
He was soon transferred to a specialist who soon verified the true cause of his symptoms: Tuberculosis.
While this was a frightening diagnosis, at least he now knew what was wrong. Finally, Gerard could begin proper treatment.
The Community Health Worker visited Gerard's home every week to make sure he was healing. We were thrilled when we finally heard good news: After months of suffering and even more months of treatment, Gerard is cured. Now this hardworking dad is back with his family, healthy and confident—empowered by the knowledge that, if he ever has another health crisis, there is a team nearby waiting to help.
Your support gave Gerard the answers he needed when there seemed to be no solution. You trained the Community Health Worker who gave eyes and ears to local doctors and intervened—saving Gerard's life—when other methods failed. Your generosity allows us to provide support for hardworking, vulnerable people like Gerard—and we are so thankful.
Looking for ways to help? Please pray that people like Gerard will continue to have access to potentially life-saving care. Also, consider donating or volunteering with MTI to bring valuable health to people across the world.