The devastation in Haiti is unimaginable for so many of us, and as mentioned yesterday, we're doing everything we can to support ongoing relief efforts. That includes providing large quantities of GSK medicines, mainly oral and topical antibiotics, for the first airlifts into the island. Our Community Partnership colleagues tell us that in the immediate aftermath of a disaster, pallets of clearly packaged, relevant medicines are most needed. We will also be making a cash donation to support recovery and all employees' gifts to The Red Cross and other relief organizations will be matched by the company.
As with so many others here in the states, the people of GSK US also have very intimate, personal connections to the tragedy. Our colleague Maria, an assistant in our group, is very active in a church here in Philadelphia that has long supported a "sister" church community in Haiti. The following is her report:
After hearing the devastating news about Haiti this morning, I immediately contacted my church family to inquire about our Haitian church, Christian Haitian Outreach overseen by Mother Eleanor Workman (central office is in Miami). Unfortunately we have learned that the school and orphanage has been severely damaged, to what extent we don't know, but fortunately all the children are safe as well as Mother Workman. This Haitian Church is part of International Fellowship of Churches, which is part of Sanctuary Church of the Open Door in Philadelphia under the auspices of Bishop Audrey F. Bronson. Some 10 years ago, our Pastor had a vision to start churches internationally, though Mother Workman has been a part of our church family since the 70's.
We support Haiti by sending non-perishables, clothes and financial support on a monthly basis and have also built a water tower to service the orphanage and school. Mother Workman is now 90 years old but still returns to us every Mother's Day with at least 3 of her children to share the miracles that occur. She is a joy to converse with and she loves to teach and sing.
We are now mobilizing every resource we can to send help and prayers to Mother Workman and our church in Haiti.