Team Broken Earth is a volunteer task force of physicians, nurses, physiotherapists and other allied health professionals from across Canada and beyond that provides medical assistance and training to underdeveloped nations where it's needed most. Team Broken Earth was started in 2010 by a surgeon from Newfoundland, Dr. Andrew Furey. Initially, he and a small group responded to the need for urgent trauma surgery after the 2010 Haiti earthquake, but they soon realized the desperate situation in Haiti would require ongoing assistance, so he returned shortly thereafter with the first real Broken Earth “Team” from St. John’s. Team Broken Earth took off from there across the country, with new teams being spearheaded primarily by MDs who were former friends or colleagues of Dr. Furey who were inspired by his work. Team Broken Earth continues to work in Haiti and has since expanded to places like Bangladesh, Guatemala, and Nicaragua. There are a number of Broken Earth Teams across Canada, including two teams here in Ottawa.
The first Ottawa team was created in 2015, led by Dr. Darryl Young, a surgeon from the Queensway Carleton Hospital, and Dr. Mark Steeves, a surgeon from Montfort Hospital. As fellow alumni of Memorial University of Newfoundland, Drs. Young and Steeves knew Dr. Furey and were inspired by his work in Haiti. Members soon joined the Ottawa team from the Queensway Carleton Hospital, Kemptville District Hospital, CHEO and Montfort. Many of the members have participated in multiple missions since then, and have been actively working to build awareness for Team Broken Earth in the Nation's Capital. The local momentum in Ottawa has really grown, especially amongst the orthopedic community, which has led to considerable interest and more teams being created across the country. The organization now has over 1000 volunteers nationally!
Due to overwhelming enthusiasm and support for Broken Earth among the local orthopedic community, a second Ottawa team was formed in 2018 that completed its first mission to Haiti in January 2019. This team is led by Dr. Eugene Wai and Dr. Robert Feibel, and is primarily made up of staff from The Ottawa Hospital, CHEO and the Kemptville District Hospital.
This was the 4th mission to Haiti for team Ottawa!
Team Ottawa included members from Kemptville District Hospital, Queensway-Carleton Hospital, Montfort Hospital, Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario, TOH Residency Training program, ConMed Orthopedics, Health Canada. The hallmark of this team was polyvalence – people all did whatever it took to help one another get as much accomplished every day as possible, while dealing with system frustrations and slowdowns. Nurses, physiotherapist and doctors all stepped beyond the bounds of their specialty to circulate, transfer patients, do inventory, scrub or circulate in the OR – a prestigious team effort!
This October, Broken Earth's Team Ottawa will be returning to Port-au-Prince Haiti for its fifth medical mission. The team is excited to have the opportunity to make a real difference in the lives of the Haitian people, as well as to help build the experience of the local Haitian medical professionals through knowledge sharing and training sessions. All donations will go to support this upcoming mission. Thank-you for your generosity!
Watch this 2018 year-end thank-you video showing some of the great work of Team Broken Earth.
Watch this 2017 year-end thank-you video showing some of the great work of Team Broken Earth.
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