21 October 2016

Lopineau, a village in the mountains around Jérémie is one of the many isolated communities severely affected by hurricane Matthew. Consisting of small houses settled in a rocky valley and once high banana trees, the village is today surrounded by cut-off trunks and debris from trees and various material lie on the side of the streets. A coloured brick façade is everything that is left of the church. Many residents fled to the brick health centre during the hurricane and it is today used for medical consultations.

Dr Clarisse Mpinganzima from Norway treats Annette, whose roof fell on her and her grandson during the hurricane at a clinic in Jérémie, Haiti. Photo: Laura Bianchi/MSF

Annette Beloni, and Givro Beloni, 15 (grand-mother and grandson)

“My mother and son were both in our home when the hurricane struck, while I was in another village, says Liselle, Annette’s daughter who brought them to the clinic. The wind blew a piece of metal sheeting of the house and fell down on them. They could barely move, and the room was filled with water. When the storm had ended, I rushed back home and found our home damaged and both of them injured. They had open bruises on the feet and the back of the head. The nurses from our health centre had gone to Jérémie to take refuge there, so my grandmother bandaged her wounds with the help of a person in the village. This man also stitched the wound on my son’s head.

My son was hurting and I could not even give him enough to eat. My mother’s injuries were causing her so much pain, especially when pus got into her ankle wound. She couldn’t walk and barely wanted to eat. There was no way to get her to the hospital like this. I took them immediately to the clinic when I heard about it.

There was a water station in the village but it was broken during the storm. It is still covered in branches and pieces of rocks and metal. There is also a water source further away, but the trees are blocking most of the access. It’s really difficult to find clean water.”

Givro’s and Annette’s wounds were cleaned and bandaged, and Annette received a Tetanos vaccine as she had no vaccination card. MSF mobile teams return to Lopineau to follow up on the patients they consulted. 

Find out more about MSF's work in  Haiti.