The Story of Djivenson

From MFK Nurse Educators Morgan Price and Magdalla Borgella

“This child was between life and death”, said Magdalla my nurse coworker. As I reviewed the file and pictures of Djivenson I couldn’t help but agree with her. On May 9, 2018, Djivenson was admitted to the Med & Foods for Kids malnutrition program in a peaceful community called Fort Bourgeois, which is located on a mountain that overlooks the city of Cap Haitien. Throughout her pregnancy, Lournedie, Djivenson’s mother battled a terrible infection that left her weak. On June 13, 2017, Djivenson was welcomed into the world, however, the complications Lournedie faced in her pregnancy left Djivenson with developmental delays. This posed an issue for Djivenson, as it ultimately lead to malnutrition.

It is not uncommon to hear of Haitians traveling to the Dominican Republic for medical attention because the quality of their healthcare is far greater than the quality of care that can be found here in Haiti. Therefore, before her due date, Lournedie went to the Dominican Republic to receive treatment for her healthcare needs.

Once Lournedie had fully recovered, she returned to Haiti with her newborn son. She began to realize that something was very wrong with her son’s development, but was so ashamed by how small and fragile he was, fearing judgmental attitudes from her community. Instead of asking for help, she hid her child from everyone’s sight except her own. Fortunately, the public health agent employed by the clinic in Fort Bourgeois, talked Lournedie into having her child assessed and to attending the malnutrition clinic in Fort Bourgeois. As a result, Djivenson was finally able to receive the care that he so desperately needed.

BEFORE: Djivenson, 9lbs 5oz

Upon admission, Djivenson was diagnosed with severe malnutrition and weighed 4.3kg (9lbs 5oz) with a discharge weight of 5.8kg (12lbs 8 oz). Before the treatment began, he was weak, unable to speak, and did not have enough strength to sit up. After treatment was received, little Djivenson can now sit up, talk, play, smile, and express his love for the Medika Mamba. Even though Lournedie had to return to the Dominican Republic to provide income for her family, she was fortunate enough to have her mother continue caring for her son in her absence.AFTER: Djivenson, 12lbs 8oz

Thanks to the public health agent Charles Natalie, Djivenson was given a second chance, something that is not often a reality for other children in Haiti.  In 12 weeks, Djivenson flourished with this new chance at life. What a joy to know that here at MFK we are able to offer second chances to others like the Charles family.