We turn our attention to the health of fathers this month in honor of Father’s Day in Haiti and elsewhere. Every day around the world, fathers provide strength and support to their families. In HAS’ service area, this means approximately 90,000 households that rely in part on the work of husbands and fathers to put food on the table, send children to school so that they can have a better future, and sustain a stable household.
Meet Edrisse. He is a proud father of three from the Artibonite Valley whose family, like two-fifths of all Haitians, depends on his farming work for survival. To be a farmer requires physical fitness; if one cannot walk, one cannot work.
One month ago, Edrisse was badly injured after a high-speed accident when his motorcycle taxi, which he was riding to get supplies for his small farm, was hit by a pick-up truck. “My knee was ripped open, and my leg and hips were also broken. I had lost a lot of blood,” he recounts. Upon his arrival at the hospital, doctors assessed his injuries and quickly sent him to the operating room for major reconstructive surgeries on his femur and pelvis.
Without these surgeries, Edrisse would never have walked again. “Because of HAS, I believe I will be walking normally soon,” says Edrisse, beaming. “If it weren’t for HAS, I would have died.” In Haiti, Father’s Day is celebrated on the last Sunday of June, and Edrisse is determined to celebrate it at home with his family.
Nearly 40 percent of Haiti’s labor force works in the agricultural sector, mostly on small subsistence farms like Edrisse’s, and another 50 percent of the population works in the service sector. Debilitating accidents happen both on the job and on the road, particularly as road conditions improve in Haiti and the number of motorcycle and truck taxis on the roads increases.
Thanks to the skilled medical teams at HAS, thousands of families in central Haiti will have the joy of celebrating Fathers’ Day together this month. This June, we salute all fathers here in Haiti and around the world.