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An Australian woman making a difference in Haiti – how are you making a difference in your career?

I received this email today through my networks – it’s a message
from Alison Thompson who will be in tomorrow’s Australia Day Honours
list, sent yesterday to her parents in Sutherland Shire (Sydney).  If
you needed a reminder of just how lucky we all are, and just how much
we each can do to make a difference in our own way, this could be it.
 If you’d like to make a financial contribution to assist in the relief
efforts, sphinxx has donated with Save the Children and I invite you to do so too.
worthwhile pointing out that this isn’t the first disaster that Alison
Thompson has been on the ground at, assisting at a grass roots level.
 The former schoolteacher overcame a serious car accident here and then
followed her dreams, moving to New York to live. On September 11,
2001, she headed downtown and set
up a stand and washed the soot out of firefighters’ eyes for weeks on
end.  When
the 2004 tsunami hit Asia, Thompson grabbed her camera and boyfriend
Oscar and went to Peraliya in Sri Lanka where 2500 people had died.
 She went for two weeks to help and ended up staying a year.  With
volunteers and no training, she set up a
hospital and refugee camp housing 3000.

Her film of
this journey, The Third Wave, was
picked up by Sean Penn and screened at the Cannes Film Festival, with
all box-office proceeds put towards building the Community Tsunami
Early-Warning Centre in Sri Lanka.  Sean Penn is now with Alison
in Port-au-Prince, doing the same thing. It’s women like Alison who
truly make me proud to
be Australian, and give me the inspiration to make a difference in the
work I do every day.

So where does your inspiration come from, and what is the difference that you will make today?

Subject: Hell in Haiti 

mum and dad – I won’t be around when they announce my award on January
26th.   I am with Sean Penn, diana jenkins, Oscar and 15 doctors
embedded in the 82 airbourne ( USA)   Dante would describe it as hell
here.  There is no food and wAter and hundreds dying daily. The aid is
all bottlenecked and not reaching here . The other day i assisted with
amputation (holding them down) while they used a saw to cut a young
boys leg off with no pain killers. Today I went with a strike force and
army patrol in hummers into the streets and walked 5 miles through the
camps set up on every street corner ..sewage and bodies stench is
everywhere. As i attend to a patient 30 people crowd around me and it’s
hard to breath.  I nearly fainted today as the sewage smell went
straight down my throat. I went white and dizzy but couldn’t sit down
as sewage is running through the streets. There is much infection and
it feels like the job is too big. No antibiotics anywhere.

news, today our new york doctors evacuated 18 patients with spinal
injuries out to miami and we’re all so excited. Our mash unit is in the
82 air base overlooking a refugee camp of over 50000 people. The
refugees start singing Christian songs at 4 am and line up for food
until the army hands it out at 8 am ( thats if there is any food)

the first night I was in the nearby jungle camping under the stars with
my team and woke up to the beautiful music drawing me to them. I
thought it was a church and we went to find it and came across the 82
airbourne camp and the refugee camp.( that’s how we ended up here) as
it wasn’t safe to stay where we were even though we had our own
security force. We are totally self suffient with food gas and
medicines and have a private donor (Diana Jenkins who was a refugee in
camps in Bosnia as a child – her family died of starvation in the
camps. ) Sean Penn is here purely as a volunteer and is cutting through
bureaucracy to get aid moving and food water and medicines to the
people. There is no agenda but to save lives. Helicopters fly over head
and it feels like vietnam. That night 50,000 people sung me to sleep
and they sing every night for the world to save them. There is always
hope but she’s not here right now.
Alison xxx

My writing is a
mess as it’s on iPhone and keeps changing my words and the generator is
on for a few hours but I know it’s important to tell the world. Please
send to any press who may call or family and friends.


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