This week I had the privilege to be in Haiti for the 11 Year Anniversary of HHAs partner hospital, which we co-founded in 2007. Just to make things even more special, it was also the official opening of the hospitals amazing new Chapel, a place where people will find emotional and spiritual healing and care, alongside the physical work of the hospital (Picture below). Huge thanks to volunteer architect Guylee Simmonds, who made this project possible!
Last week we also had the privilege to be in Switzerland, reporting to The Swiss Paraplegic Foundation about the impact of our collective efforts. I was amazed looking afresh at the numbers. Even between 2012/13 and 2016/17 the hospital saw double the number of beneficiaries, with over 20,000 people supported last year. There's also been phenomenal progress in our efforts to make the hospital as self sustainable as possible (always a dream of ours). In 2012/13, 70% of the hospitals operational budget was funded by HHA and other international partners. In this years operational budget, the scales have dramatically tipped, with 80% of the hospitals operational budget funded through in-country, Haiti funding. From an over-grown field with wondering cows, pre-2007, we now have one of the leading health facilities in northern Haiti; a 100+ bed facility with over 250 Haitian staff.
This is all a good news story and one you've been a part of. There's lots to celebrate, as interventions such as this are having a huge impact across the world. Did you know since 2000 across the globe...
- New HIV Infections have gone down by 40%
- Over 2 billion more people have got access to clean water
- Child mortality has reduced by over 7,000 children per day
- Between 1990 and 2015, maternal mortalities dropped by about 44%
This is why HHA and the hospital began, following the cry of 'The Make Poverty History' campaign and the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) to help end extreme poverty by 2015. It's why it was very apt this week, that alongside the 11 Year Anniversary celebrations, we also had the privilege to help launch God's Global Goals? at The House of Lords. A new campaign to engage and equip Christians to more radically engage in the Sustainable Development Goals, also known as the Global Goals. An ambitious list of 17 Goals to end extreme poverty, fight inequality and protect the planet...all by 2030. More to come on that in the next week!
However, whilst there is plenty to celebrate, there is also lots more we need to do. The MDGs made huge progress, but we're not quite there yet. As one harrowing example...with over 800 women dying from preventable birth related issues every day (99% in developing countries), our work still has a long way to go.
It's why in the coming years we're making plans to increase the capacity of our maternity unit so we can provide better care to more women. It's why this year we're fundraising to build a new neonatal unit in 2018 at our partner hospital that will triple our capacity. It's why next week I'll be in Haiti again with our Swiss partners planning the opening of a new Bakery and Coffee Shop in Cap-Haitien, run by our Rehabilitation patients. It's why we're launching the CRADLE VSA (exciting new automated blood pressure device) in the largest refugee camp in the world in March with Kings College London, to measure the impact across over 280,000 people.
We've achieved a lot in 11 years...but with only 12 years to go until 2030, we have a long way to go! If the momentum of the last 15 years continues, we can end hunger, we can dramatically reduce avoidable maternal and infant deaths, we can end extreme poverty. Why would we stop halfway!? We're not going to, and we hope you won't either.