From May 12 to May 19, Catherine Rioux, General Manager of IRIS Mundial, and Francine Lavallée, optometrist visited Labrousse, in the south east of Haiti. The objective of the visit was to carry out a training and follow-up mission with the team from the organization’s first permanent eye care program: Miriame Cadet, head nurse, and Maxi Marcelin, assistant-mobilizer. In a spirit of synergy between its two ongoing programs in Haiti, two teammates of the similar program located in Limbe, in the north of Haiti, joined the training: Nadia Bazil, head nurse, and Emmanuel Mesidor, mobilizer.

The training was given in the Notre-Dame-de-Lourdes de Labrousse Health Center, in an isolated area in the heart of the high mountains. Miss Bazil and Mr. Mesidor enjoyed their first visit of the eye clinic, which was set up three years before the Limbe clinic. They had the opportunity to discuss their respective realities about the program and to share experiences. Moreover, during the week, teammates increased their knowledge and learned new oculo-visual examination techniques taught by Dr. Lavallée. This will help them improve the quality of their vision screening examinations with patients throughout the year. Furthermore, these techniques were put into practice during a vision screening day in an elementary school, and during a mobile vision screening clinic for adults, and the two trainers assisted the team.

During one of the training days, Mr. Marcelin told the trainers: “IRIS Mundial is a very helpful program for all people living in the region where the services are offered. […] A key example in the Dassa area, we met Jolene Joseph, who could not see at all, and now, she sees well thanks to surgery. […] There are many teachers who had problems preparing lessons and have benefited from glasses that help them do their job better. Also, there are many students who have problems […] and the IRIS Mundial program has allowed them to benefit from a vision screening examination to find out what was wrong with their eyes. It is a program that everyone in the area loves […] “.

Proud of this training week, the teammates of Limbe and the trainers left Labrousse on May 18, the National day of the Haitian flag. A second week of training was provided subsequently in Limbe. A second article will follow soon to present the proceedings of the last part of the stay in Haiti.