Sunda had learned last year how the earthquake’s destruction affected the backs of Haitians, seeing some women carrying buckets of water on their heads and holding others in their hands as they walked down uneven gravel roads. This year, he went even deeper and saw where many in the country have been living since January 2010 — tent cities.
“I actually got to go into a tent city this time where people are basically sleeping on a mat or on the ground or whatever makeshift they can do, so a lot more acute back problems — especially in the tent city, everybody that I touched, you can tell, this person’s in pain; they’re hurting,” he said.
Two days of the trip were spent in a remote village with “very primitive” living conditions. The group took rice, beans and cooking oil to the village the second day to help feed its 300 residents.
“That was a good mission to be able to provide some food to folks who have basically nothing out there,” Sunda said.
Some signs of recovery were visible during Sunda’s visit, but the work left to do was still much more evident.
“I did start to see some signs of construction equipment, building supplies, but in the big picture, it was a drop in the bucket,” he said. “We’re starting to see some stuff happen, but the tent-city population has probably only decreased by about 10 to 15 percent — pastor LaGuerre kind of confirmed that for me.”
Graviss’ current objective is helping find ways to get food delivered to Haiti. Sunda said he was encouraged by the donations of friends and patients that allowed him to make the second trip and that he hopes to go again as soon as possible, perhaps taking other chiropractors with him.
“Hopefully that will take place in the future, maybe within the next three to six months,” he said. “We just kind of have to see how it plays out, get my donations together, see if I can get somebody else together with me.”