January 19, 2010

Spring Interns Lend a Hand to Victims of Haiti Quake

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InteRDom Spring 2010 interns Jody Granados and Quentin Morel, both of France, set aside their internships and classes on Friday, January 15 to lend their services as French-Spanish translators at a local Dominican hospital for victims of the earthquake in Haiti.

Granados and Morel, native French speakers, were the only two translators that day at the Plaza de la Salud, one of the many Dominican hospitals to receive victims from neighboring Haiti. They said that they saw a wide range of injuries, from severed appendages to head wounds and concussions.

“We translated the conversations between the doctors and the Haitian patients,” Granados said, “We also tried to calm the wounded, who were lost in the hospital where their language wasn’t spoken.”

Granados went on to say that she and Morel talked with many families, as well as single people, in the hospital, and most were worried about their family members who were still in Haiti.

Granados and Morel hope to be able to translate for more patients, not only at Plaza de la Salud, but at other hospitals around Santo Domingo as well.  They have reached out to various hospitals and hope to be contacted soon.

Both Granados and Morel were at home in the InteRDom apartments when the earthquake hit.  “We were lying on our beds with our computers when the bed began to shake,” Granados said.  “Quentin got up to walk to the window and he saw the buildings moving.  Incredible.”

Neither Morel nor Granados were injured in the earthquake, and both plan to join a task force assembled by InteRDom’s sponsoring organization in the Dominican Republic, Fundación Global Democracia y Desarrollo (FUNGLODE) that will travel to Haiti to distribute aid and to help with the rebuilding effort in the coming weeks.

InteRDom, an initiative of Global Foundation for Democracy and Development (GFDD) and Fundación Global Democracia y Desarrollo (FUNGLODE), offers students the opportunity to gain professional experience by interning with Dominican organizations and businesses related to their field of study.

In keeping with its mission to promote academic and cultural exchange, internationalization and cultural understanding, InteRDom encourages everyone to contribute to the relief efforts taking place in Haiti.  For more information about what we are doing to help, click here.