WUFT News

Project Haiti 5K Raises Funds For UF Medical School Mission Trip

By on August 26th, 2013
About 150 runners take off from the Project Haiti 5K race starting line Saturday morning on at the University of Florida campus on Gale Lemerand Drive

Ellyn Ayres / WUFT News

About 150 runners take off from the Project Haiti 5K race starting line Saturday morning on at the University of Florida campus on Gale Lemerand Drive

About 150 runners rose before the sun did Saturday for the fourth annual Project Haiti 5-kilometer race at the University of Florida in an effort to raise money for a medical mission trip to Haiti.

The student-run Project Haiti mission trip gives UF College of Medicine students a global perspective they can apply to local health care settings in Florida, said Daniel Turner, 23, a co-leader of Project Haiti 2014 and a second-year UF medical student.

Turner said that even though Haiti does not have the most advanced medical technology, the team still goes with the intention of caring for fellow human beings.

“There’s something intrinsic about that,” Turner said. “I think it teaches us to do it better in America, as well.”

The Project Haiti mission team, which will consist of about 35 members by spring 2014, aims to raise $40,000 before the March 1 departure date. The race was one of the team’s larger fundraisers of the year, Turner said. He estimated it raised about $4,000.

The 5K attracted runners from North Central Florida, Orlando and Jacksonville areas.

Dr. Timothy Flynn, the senior associate dean of clinical affairs at the UF College of Medicine and chief medical officer of UF Shands, ran in the 5K with his wife, Dr. Marian Limacher, the senior associate dean for faculty affairs and professional development at the UF College of Medicine.

“We’re here supporting all six colleges, Shands and our students here learning international health,” Flynn said.

Funds raised will help purchase medical supplies and pharmaceutical drugs for the eight-day trip. Supplies are ordered with the help of attending pharmacist Jose Puentes, as well as a student pharmacy team from UF’s College of Pharmacy.

Samantha Baer, 27, the project’s other co-leader, said the pharmacy team works closely with Project Haiti members to determine what medicine will be needed based on the previous year’s records. The 2014 trip will mark the 17th year that UF students completed Project Haiti.

“We’re very fortunate that we use a team of pharmacists from UF to help get our medical supplies,” said Baer, who is also a second-year Project Haiti team member and UF medical student. “That’s something that, as medical students, we don’t necessarily have a lot of expertise in.”

Turner said he hopes to bring back a passion for providing quality healthcare to those in need, from the Haitian villages to Gainesville.

“I think there’s a lot to be learned from a Project Haiti mission trip,” Turner said. “As we, as future doctors, look towards our careers, I think that part of it is just seeing our fellow human beings who are in a different situation and setting, realizing that the kind of poverty that they’re experiencing just isn’t okay.”


This entry was posted in Local and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
 

More Stories in Local

Preserving History Through Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings’ Recipe

The Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings State Park exists as a way to remember Florida history… But the workers there are doing something extra to “preserve” memories. WUFT’s Marie Edinger reports.


CMT’s “Gainesville” docu-series will premiere Aug. 20 at 10 p.m. This “coming of age” show will focus on a group of 20-something year old’s as they try to make it on their own. Photo courtesy of CMT

Gainesville Reality Show Set To Air Aug. 20

Country Music Television’s new docu-series “Gainesville” is set to air back-to-back episodes on Aug. 20 at 10 p.m. Some residents are worried that the show will not accurately portray Gainesville.


Midwife Talks About Life Experiences

Former midwife, Glenn Cameron, gives a glimpse into her years as a midwife in the 70s and the challenges the practice presented.


FDOT Cuts Funding For Active Streets

The FDOT cut funding for Gainesville’s Active Streets event, which offers free pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly activities twice per year. The organization and its supporters are trying to overturn the decision and look for new ways to fund the event.


Amanda Norman and two other Grace Marketplace residents wait outside the kitchen doors as it rains heavily. Norman has lived in Dignity Village for more than two months. photo by Thomas Lynn

The Grace Marketplace Debate Over Improvements

Gainesville’s City Commission approved a $585,525 budget for improvements that will make 10 campus buildings at the Empowerment Center livable. Residents and volunteers look forward to the changes, but some are concerned by the nearby chaos at Dignity Village.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Underwriting Payments