“We believe that the chaotic situation of the poor can only be resolved by creating a productive environment where socio-economic and health care investments are made in an organized way in and with the people…” Ulrick Gaillard, founder of Batey Relief Alliance
The Batey Relief Alliance capitalizes its resources in developing and building a self-sufficient and productive environment inside communities where the populations have the freedom to have direct access to and manage the comprehensive services that meet their basic culturally-oriented needs. This is our concept of bringing the services home to the populations. Since 1997, BRA has been charged by its stakeholders to deliver services that were too often inaccesible to the poor due to discrimination, stigma, extreme poverty or fear of deportation. BRA’s programs are executed in collaboration with local governments and grassroots partner organizations and the international community. The following social development activities are a clear statement of our commitment to the people we unconditionally serve.
BRA’s comprehensive healthcare delivery system, for example, covers geographical areas in four countries: Haiti, Dominican Republic, Peru and the United States. We work within the most socio-economically-isolated and vulnerable areas, including rural and “batey” communities, urban slums and border communities. BRA responds to the long-term health needs of populations by building modern healthcare facilities and installing HIV/AIDS Treatment Units; distributing free medicines, multivitamins, antiworm medications and nutrition; building water/sanitations; carrying out preventive health and education programs; and saving lives. On an average, more than 60,000 patients annually receive permanent health and HIV/AIDS care from BRA’s medical facilities. Another 250,000 is served indirectly through BRA local partners and other BRA programs. BRA also trains, mobilizes and dispatches dozens of Health Community Promoters (CHP) to local communities to educate residents about health crisis and gender-based violence prevention techniques.
Countries and Programs
Dominican Republic: In 2006, BRA built the Dominican Republic’s first modern medical center complex within a rural batey community – Batey Cinco Casas, District Don Juan, Monte Plata province. In 2012, BRA donated a mobile medical clinic and an ambulance to the local government in Sabana Grande de Boya to expand health and emergency care within other far-reached rural areas. All patients, regardless of money, receive free medicines and access to all the primary and specialized care services, in addition to those offered during weekly mobile medical interventions, both facilities have to offer, including general medicine, pediatrics, gynecology, ophthalmology, dentistry, ambulatory surgery, laboratory, imaging, medical referrals, immunization, and free HIV/AIDS/Tuberculosis testing, education, prevention and antiretroviral treatment. Other BRA programs in the Dominican Republic include food security, encompassing of agricultural cooperative development (La BRAteyana) and food distribution; medical donations; water and sanitation; maternal child health, encompassing of distribution of multivitamins, vitamin A and antiworm medicines to children and pregnant women; blindness prevention; international mission trips; education; volunteer/residence; the art and disaster relief.
Haiti: On January 11, 2010, one day before the devastating earthquake hit Haiti, BRA signed an agreement with Haiti’s Ministry of Health to coordinate the delivery of sustainable primary medical care and laboratory services and free medicines, multivitamins, antiworm medications and nutrition to 60,000 people living in the Southeast Department and Plateau Central border communes of Anse-a-Pitres, Belle Anse, Grand Gosier and Thiotte and Beladere. BRA also addressed the health needs of the populations through mobile medical/dental/ophthalmology interventions, Maternal Child Health, preventive health and HIV/AIDS/Tuberculosis and Cholera education, and clean water distribution programs. Other BRA programs in Haiti included USAID-funded women empowerment delivering skills training and microcredit to 800 Haitian women to develop small businesses within their communities; food security, encompassing of food distribution and installation of vegetable gardens; international mission trips and disaster relief.
Peru: BRA partners with the Peruvian government, Caritas-Lima and the international community to implement a preventive health project of Maternal Child Health, distributing free multivitamins, vitamin A and antiworm medicines to pregnant women and children living in Lima’s impoverished urban slum neighborhoods. BRA also seeks to expand its healthcare intervention in Peru through international medical/dental mission trips and preventive health education.
United States: Funded by the AIDS Institute of the New York State Department of Health, BRA utilized radio airwaves to educate the immigrant populations living in inner New York City neighborhoods about HIV/AIDS and health crisis prevention techniques. BRA also carried out international conferences at the United Nations, Barnard College and Columbia University, raising public awareness about health, bilateral and human rights issues affecting both the Dominican Republic and Haiti. Recently, BRA launched a new art project, “The Art of Saving Lives” – by collecting artwork from collectors and artists to be sold to the public, with the proceeds to support the organization’s many other life-saving programs.