Hello in Haiti

It was a typical and extraordinary Monday morning. Typical in that I wish I had stayed in bed. Extraordinary because I found myself in my local hospital’s accident and emergency  department waiting for my husband’s employee to get his wrist sewn back together by a nurse with way to much eye make-up. He is a tree surgeon and, sometimes, chainsaws eat through more than just the limbs of a tree. A bit like a Great White deciding to snack on a human instead of a seal. 

So while baby boy was chomping through a cheesy pretzel while we waited, I picked up a random copy of Hello Magazine published about 2 weeks ago. The cover story was pictures of the Beckhams on a shopping trip – for some reason we are fascinated with staring at them. Once I had flicked through the pictures like some stalker, I came across page 32 on Heidi Klum’s visit to Haiti. The pictures showed her holding a tiny black baby in a kangaroo pouch like sling across the front of her body. I decided this was a story worth reading the text for. About 4 columns in (once I had skim read the bits about what designer clothing she was wearing) I read about the dire situation that 60% of women and girls are forced to have unprotected sex and then are expected to have babies without any support in an area rife with disease. Heidi was visiting a premature unit and observing babies who were fighting for survival with no help from the kind of technology you see in a hospital over here. Their only aid to survival was blankets and being carried close to the skin of a nurse or parent in the kangaroo papooses. Heidi had picked up a little baby girl who was crying in her cot. Her Mum had abandoned her and when Heidi gave her a cuddle she noticed the baby was covered in poo and wee. She said she cuddled the baby in the papoose for the duration of her visit and the baby instantly quietened. Needless to say she was very reluctant to return her to the cot and left the hospital hoping the best for the baby girl’s outcome.

The story was written to promote the work of Unicef in Haiti. While I was pleased to see a humanitarian cause reported in a magazine like Hello, I was at the same time saddened by the priority it had been given editorially sandwiched between stories of parties, visits to expensive celebrity palaces and meaningless drivel on style and celebrity gossip. I was sad because the magazine’s editorial priorities accurately reflect our own – they are the wrong priorities.

I am blogging every day to help Unicef protect children worldwide including places like Haiti.

I aim to raise £1 a day through this blog and if you are able to donate to the campaign, please visit my page on the Unicef website.

Thanks for reading.

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