Suspension of Weekly Clinics Due to Local Gang Activity

Suspension of Weekly Clinics Due to Local Gang Activity

Dear Friends of The Good Shepherd Foundation (TGSF):

We are most saddened to let you know that we have had two destructive situations relating to our
daily clinic in Chevreau du Lombard in the past month.

On August 14, our nurse, Oscar’s bus was stopped, and all passengers kidnapped. They were
beaten up and asked if they could pay a ransom. The kidnappers called Dr. Steeve, our clinic’s
doctor, on Oscar’s phone and demanded $1,900 to release Oscar. Of course, he called us, and we
immediately paid the ransom and Oscar was released at the end of the day. They also took
$1,200 worth of medications that Oscar was transporting to the clinic at the time. As a result, we
temporarily closed the clinic.

The week after the kidnapping, the local gang broke into the clinic and stole all our medications,
some of our benches, our solar power batteries and inverters, and anything else they could. They
also burnt cars and homes in this small community. The village gangs are out of control at this
time, and we need to determine what our next steps will be. The cost of bringing the clinic back
up to speed is approximately $3,000, and more importantly, we need to ensure the safety of our
staff and patients.

As per our September 23, 2023, Board meeting, the Clinic is temporarily closed, pending
detailed information from the local community. Due to safety issues for our staff and patients,
and liability issues for TGSF, the clinic will remain closed until several conditions are met. We
have alerted the community that we will solicit input from Fr. Joseph, the Pastor at the Catholic
Church in Poteneau (the neighboring community to Chevreau), and Wilmond, our representative
from ORACHEL, the Diaspora organization who owns the building that houses the clinic. The
Board will consider reopening the clinic only after the gang leaders meet, create peace in the
communities we serve, and the peace has been maintained for 30 consecutive days. After that
time, we will re-address the situation.

We are heartbroken to have to eliminate healthcare for the 1,000 patients per month that we have
been serving, but believe we have no alternative, due to the need for safety for all involved. We
have paid our staff their salary for the two weeks we were initially closed in August and are
sending them a stipend of half of their salaries for the month of September, to assist with living

Please pray for guidance and wisdom. The situation is complicated, and we need this support
from you as we struggle to discern our next steps.

The Board Members of TGSF