CAW Members Help Out at Port-Au-Prince

February 9, 2010, 1:45 PM EST

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Three CAW Local 636 members spent a week in Port-Au-Prince, Haiti helping out at an impromptu medical clinic assessing and providing wound and trauma care to hundreds of victims of the devastating January 12 earthquake.

Tanya Bultje, Teresa Cisek, and Marlene Magashazi are Personal Support Workers at Woodingford Lodge, which has long-term care facilities in Oxford County, Tillsonburg, Ingersoll and Woodstock, Ontario.

Tanya's sister runs a home for disadvantaged and special needs children in Port-Au-Prince. Tanya, Teresa and Marlene help at the facility from time to time and immediately headed to Port-Au-Prince after the earthquake hit. They arrived after going through neighboring Dominican Republic as part of a guarded convoy.

What they found was gut-wrenching with more than 160 people camped in the yard of the house with many people suffering from severe wounds, fractures and other trauma. The Local 636 members remained in Haiti for a week using their training to help treat the sick and injured.

Tanya said the three are planning to go back in mid-February to continue helping at the medical clinic and will be joined by a fourth Woodingford Lodge worker Liz Pais.

"The problems in Haiti are very difficult and complicated and will continue to get worse as more time goes by," said Tanya. "We must go on providing as much support as possible as the people of Haiti struggle to overcome the immediate crisis and work to rebuild the country over the long term."

"The local union and the community are tremendously proud of these members who took their time to assist in the relief effort in January and are returning to assist again soon," said CAW Local 636 President Ross Gerrie. "The local has had in-plant collections for the social justice fund and the local will also be making a donation to the orphanage in Haiti where these members will be returning to assist."

The CAW has set a goal of raising $250,000 for Haitian relief efforts. For more information go to


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