Posts Tagged ‘peace corps’

Ambu-launched! I Need Your Help.

Monday, May 16th, 2011

I’ve mentioned before that my sister is in the Peace Corps, currently finishing up her last few months of a 2 year commitment in Burkina Faso (It’s a landlocked country in Western Africa, in case you’re like the lady at my post office who didn’t believe me that it was indeed a REAL PLACE)(A real place that takes $35 worth of postage to send a couple magazines). Carolyn has recently decided to extend her commitment another year, where she will move even FURTHER away from civilization and teach at an even MORE remote school. But before she leaves her village, she’s working on a promise she made to help her friends with an important project.

This is the ambulance in her village:

Picture copyright C. Glidden

 

Picture copyright C. Glidden

Picture copyright C. Glidden
Picture copyright C. Glidden
Picture copyright C. Glidden

So, in reality, they have no ambulance. It’s unusable. If you are sick enough that you need to go to the hospital – 45km away – you get to catch a ride on a motorcycle, a bike, or a donkey cart. Or hey, how about hopping on a bush taxi, which is a bus that transports anything and everything in dirty, crowded, unsafe conditions. Seriously, do you want to be bleeding or in pain or suffering and riding in a vehicle that allows this?

That's a guy strapping a goat to the top of a bush taxi. THIS IS NOT THAT UNUSUAL. Picture copyright C. Glidden

Think about this: there is a huge lack of maternity and pre-natal care in Burkina Faso, and complications during labor are extremely common. With all the discussions we have here in America about birth choices and unmedicated childbirth and homebirth and waterbirth and birthing centers and other non-hospital options, there’s always the knowledge that medical care and life-saving interventions are only a 911 call away. These villagers don’t have 911. They don’t have anyone to call. There is no middle-of-the-night rush to a hospital if something goes wrong and a woman or her baby are in distress. Imagine how terrifying that must be.

Hey, that was some fun imagining. Are you totally bummed out now? Are you wishing there was some way you could help those women and babies? Today, you are in luck. Because after months of proposal-writing, paperwork and politics within her village, Carolyn has gotten the ambulance repair project approved by the Peace Corps and it has officially launched. They are accepting donations to fund THIS SPECIFIC CAUSE, where your dollar or dollars could literally help save someone’s life.

The link to the Peace Corps’s project page is HERE. They accept credit cards. I (and my sister)(and her friends in Burkina Faso) would be incredibly grateful if you wanted to donate – or if you can’t donate, if you could help spread the word to your friends and family. There’s a handy “tweet” button at the top of this post and the little icon links just below the end of this text makes it easy to share on email or Facebook.

Thank you in advance for ANYTHING you do to help repair the ambulance.

p.s. My sister doesn’t know I’m doing this. She hates asking for money even more than I do.