Friday, July 15, 2011

Full Circle

Almost 11 years ago I first came to Hospital Albert Schweitzer, Haiti with 3 American physical therapy students. Over the next 3 years, a total of 6 students came here with me. They were all great people and I hope they learned something about this place and the people here. For the next five years I came alone to work and teach the staff and volunteers here, and once with a work team and once with a professional colleague. Now for the past 3 years, I have come to teach Haitian students in the Rehabilitation Technician Training Program. The circle has been completed. Now I am teaching students from Haiti in Haiti. This is as it should be. Haiti is not the place to train American students; we can do that at home. Haiti needs experienced clinicians to share their knowledge with the people here and to learn many lessons in return.

Today was my last day with the students this year. They were all very gracious as I reviewed their clinical evaluation with them and wished them all well. We had a small party after lunch and they sang good bye to me in a wonderful multi-part harmony. I have never had a good bye quite like that before.

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