GGH Featured on “Global Innovations”

Greater Good Haiti Director, Kelly Kobza, and volunteer Robin Bougeja are featured on Chris Grahan’s San Francisco Bay Area’s “Global Innovations” program to discuss their ongoing work in Haiti.

IN DEPTH: Palo Alto Activist Goes Her Own Way in Haiti

Sometimes, when the bureaucracy gets too cumbersome, you just have to take matters into your own hands. Maggie Beidelman’s video report from Haiti. Watch the video: Palo Alto Patch.

Watch the Video: Local Hero Award

Greater Good Haiti Director, Kelly Kobza was honored by the Midpeninsula Media Center for her work with children in Haiti. The Media Center selected six “Local Heroes” from the community, and showcased their accomplishments in a series of interviews, which aired on cable TV during the month of March. (more…)

Palo Alto Patch – Tent City: One Palo Alto Volunteer’s Experience in Haiti

I have been living and working in Haiti, on the island of La Gonave, in the town of Anse A Galtes for some 20 months.

When I need to go to Port au Prince for a variety of reasons — to fly out, make purchases, do some banking or meet with people — I must stay over night, sometimes two nights. Having lived in the company of Haitians (most Americans live in compounds with other Americans) I have come to know a few Haitians whom I can call on as friends.

One such couple of friends is Twenty (Wismy is his given name) and his girlfriend Ketlie. Twenty and Ketlie graciously open their doors to me and offer me a bed to sleep on when I am in Port au Prince. They are young by our standards at 24 but by Haitian standards they are four years beyond the median age. Neither of them are gainfully employed since the earthquake of January 12, 2010. Money is earned through odd jobs, running errands; Ketlie is a trained beautician and occasionally has a client. They, like over a million others, were displaced in January 12, 2010 when the 7.1 earthquake destroyed so much of Port au Prince.

Read more in the Palo Alto Patch.

Where is the Dignity?

Please visit Palo Alto Patch  to read my latest article titled “Where is the Dignity?”  Let me know what you think . . .

Mercury News Article: Kelly Kobza in Haiti

When Palo Alto native Kelly Kobza realized she needed to aid a young amputee at a tent city in the center of Haiti’s capital of Port-au-Prince, she had to mentally brace herself to “be at least as strong as that 10-year-old girl was.”

She’d been surprised when a doctor said he didn’t have time to apply fungal cream to the stump of the 10-year-old girl who had lost a leg in the magnitude-7 earthquake that struck the country Jan. 12, leaving tens of thousands dead and many more injured. Instead, the doctor instructed Kobza to apply the cream and teach the girl how to apply it herself in the future.

“It caused me to pause, and I had to pull myself together to get through it,” Kobza said.

Though the 51-year-old former Palo Alto Unified School District teacher originally had intended to participate in a work-exchange program in Central America, the temblor changed her plans.

Kobza said she contacted San Francisco-based nonprofit Sirona Cares, which connected her with a man who runs two orphanages in Port-au-Prince. She agreed to volunteer five to six hours a day, six days a week in exchange for a safe place to stay and one meal a day. Once Kobza arrived in Haiti on March 8, she moved into a home in what she described as a middle-class neighborhood of Port-au-Prince, where she stayed with a Haitian pastor and his wife, a doctor.

Read full story: Palo Altan Returns from Haiti to Spread Awareness (Mercury News, 7/10/2010)