Turning the Tide in Haiti: Many Hands Fights Malnutrition, Disease with Love in Action Health Programs

by | Jul 1, 2024

Millions in Haiti face a critical challenge: limited access to healthcare. Read about Many Hands’ “Love in Action” initiatives and learn how we’re providing medical assistance, reducing infant mortality, and empowering families to build a healthier future.

Haiti is a nation facing immense healthcare challenges, with limited access to trained doctors, medicine, and medical equipment, as well as a lack of infrastructure and often unsafe and unsanitary living conditions. These obstacles are especially detrimental to children and the elderly, who are most vulnerable to medical emergencies and disease. The combination of malnutrition, inadequate housing, and scarce healthcare resources often means that easily treatable illnesses can escalate into life-threatening conditions. This is why Many Hands has made health programs a priority in Haiti. Here’s a closer look at the current healthcare crisis in Haiti and how Many Hands is making a difference through its Love in Action initiatives.

A family in the Many Hands, Premye Mil Jou or PMJ (First 1,000 Days) Program for short.

A Stark Reality

Infant and Maternal Mortality Rates

The statistics paint a grim picture:

  • Infant Mortality Rate: 47 out of 1,000 live births (World Bank, 2020). Compare this with U.S. rates of 5.48 deaths per 1,000 live births (Macrotrends, 2024).
  • Maternal Mortality Rate: 480 out of 100,000 live births (World Bank, 2017). Again, compare this with U.S. rates of 19 deaths per 100,000 live births (CDC, 2024).

Child Malnutrition

  • 1 in 4 children are severely malnourished. This statistic is much lower in the U.S. at 2.5% (World Bank, 2021). 

These figures highlight the urgent need for medical intervention and support in Haiti, particularly for the most vulnerable populations.

Many Hands: Love in Action Initiative

Many Hands is committed to transforming these dire statistics by providing medical assistance to hundreds of families. Through our Love in Action initiative, we offer crucial support to those in desperate need, focusing on sustainable, long-term solutions.

Haitian children (on left) and a PET Cart recipient (on right)

Many Hands: Love in Action Initiative

Many Hands is committed to transforming these dire statistics by providing medical assistance to hundreds of families. Through our Love in Action initiative, we offer crucial support to those in desperate need, focusing on sustainable, long-term solutions.

Every Family Deserves Medical Care

Many Hands ensures that families receive the medical attention they need. By identifying the root causes of medical issues, they provide tailored treatments and educate patients on preventative measures to reduce future health risks.

Every Mother Should Survive Birth

Prenatal and neonatal care in Haiti is scarce, making childbirth a dangerous endeavor. Many Hands collaborates with local partners to deliver essential care and information to new mothers, ensuring safer deliveries and healthier starts for newborns.

Every Child Should See Their Fifth Birthday

With the average income at roughly $3 per day, many families cannot afford basic necessities, leading to high child mortality rates. Many Hands focuses on those critical first 1,000 days of life, providing programs and tools to tackle the root causes of child mortality.

Medical Checks and Education

The healthcare situation in Haiti is dire:

  • Only 10% of the population lives less than 1 kilometer from a health facility.
  • More than 5.5 million people – nearly half the population – will need humanitarian assistance and protection in 2024
  • Only 40% of Haiti’s 11.8 million inhabitants have access to health care, and getting treatment for many illnesses depends on their ability to pay.

To address these issues, Many Hands provides ongoing medical checks, prenatal and postnatal care, and adequate nutrition to children and mothers in our programs. Trained nurses visit nearly 400 families across three geographic locations, offering personalized medical solutions and preventative education to reduce future health risks.

Immunizations (above) and mom and child being fed (below)

Mobility Carts and Medical Care

Partnering with Mobility Worldwide in Leighton, IA, Many Hands distributes Mobility Carts to individuals with mobility impairments. These hand-cranked devices are designed to navigate Haiti’s challenging terrain, granting users increased independence and participation in their communities.

A Mobility Cart recipient through Many Hand’s “Love in Action” initiatives

Impact of Many Hands

The results of the work we are doing are encouraging:

Infant Mortality Rate: The initiative has achieved a dramatic reduction, with an infant mortality rate of 11 out of 1,000

Child Stunting Rate: Only 1.2% of children in Many Hands’ programs experience stunting, significantly lower than the national average of 21.9% reported by the Global Hunger Index (GHI).

Child Safety: No child in Many Hands’ programs has been placed in an orphanage or disappeared to a larger city, a common issue in Haiti.

Many Hands is a beacon of hope in Haiti, demonstrating that comprehensive, compassionate care can save lives and build healthier communities. Our Medical Assistance initiatives exemplify a commitment to ensuring every family, mother, and child receives the medical care they deserve. By addressing the root causes of health issues and providing sustainable solutions, Many Hands is making a significant impact in Haiti, one family at a time.

Will you come alongside our new mothers and their newborns by helping us raise $12,500 this month to provide 100 newborn care packages? You can provide your donation at the link below!

About Many Hands:

Many Hands is an Iowa-based nonprofit creating local and global life-transformation by strengthening families.  Established in 2008, the organization focuses on six key areas for transformation, including education, agronomy, leadership development, safe homes, medical assistance, and economic development. Each year, the organization reaches at least 25,000 people through their Haitian operations, IMPACT trips, and Many Hands Thrift Markets located in Grimes, Iowa, and Spencer, Iowa. 

Many Hands is called to transform together, to be love in action, in a broken world.