Monday, June 28, 2010

Help for Haitian Student

Getting his life back: Haiti quake survivor who got prosthetic leg in New Haven is following new career path

By Amanda Pinto, Register Staff NEW HAVEN — Five months ago, Ralph Gedeon was lying trapped beneath a pile of rubble when the engineering college he attended in Port-au-Prince toppled in the 7.0 earthquake that hit the island nation. His leg was crushed and several organs were failing when his father, after digging for a day and a half, rescued Gedeon from the tumbled remnants. Miraculously, on Sunday, the earthquake survivor stood on two legs — one of them a prosthetic — and packed his bags as he prepared to leave the Sister Ann Virginie Grimes Rehabilitation Center on Chapel Street. Gedeon’s progress is a miracle, and seeing him walk brings tears to the eyes of Dr. David Gibson, an orthopedic surgeon who teaches at the Yale School of Medicine and is affiliated with the Hospital of Saint Raphael. “This is what you do it for,” he said. “It is really heartening to see him walk.” But for Gedeon, who will now begin outpatient treatment in Rockland, N.Y., walking is only a part of his positive journey. When he eventually returns to his home country, he will have a permanent prosthesis that will even allow him to play soccer, and he’ll have an engineering degree that will enable him to help others injured in the earthquake, said Ayal Lindeman, the emergency medical technician, nurse and Scientology volunteer minister who was on a mission in Haiti when he met Gedeon, 22. Gedeon will also take classes at Rockland Community College, and will likely receive a scholarship from the International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading to continue studies in engineering, Lindeman said. He will switch his concentration from electrical to mechanical engineering so he can focus on creating and improving orthotics and prosthetics to help Haiti’s thousands of amputees, Lindeman said. Gedeon has come quite a long way for a man who contemplated accepting death rather than enduring an amputation that could have left him shunned in Haiti, where amputees are degraded, Lindeman said. After Gedeon was rescued, his father, Raphael Gedeon, told Lindeman ‘I love my son, but I cannot condemn him to this life.’ At that moment, Lindeman thought of the motto on the back of his mission jacket, ‘Something can be done;’ he called his friend Gibson and promised Ralph Gedeon a leg and a life. Now Gedeon has had nine surgeries, his care has been provided at no cost by St. Raphael’s and a prosthetic donated by a manufacturer. He has been tutored, free of charge, in English. He used a cane to walk from the rehabilitation center Sunday, but routinely lifted it as he waved and joked with the small crowd of well-wishers who gathered to see him off. Of his ability to walk, Gedeon smiles and simply says, “We’re progressing.” “(I thought I would walk) because Ayal promised me, and second, I’ve seen people walking (on prosthetics) in the movies,” he said. He said his leg, which is still healing, is a bit uncomfortable, but he was full of smiles and hugs for the group—which included Marie and Marc Roseme, housekeepers in the facility who are originally from Haiti— who bid him an emotional goodbye. His father, who arrived in the U.S. Friday, said through a translator Sunday that he was at a loss for words for what his son has accomplished, and for the generosity bestowed upon him. “I don’t have an expression that would fit,” he said. “Just thank you, thank you, thank you.”
Scientology Video: Why we help

Monday, June 21, 2010

Scientology Book Helps People Cope

The book Self Analysis by L. Ron Hubbard is a Scientology book that helps people get a grip on their lives. In it, Ron says, "Probably the most neglected friend you have is you. And yet every man, before he can be a true friend to the world, must first become a friend to himself." The book has exercises you can do by yourself, or you can "twin-up" with a friend or anyone interested in improving his/her life and go back and forth, asking the questions in the book. The most remarkable things happen: You start to feel more energetic, more optimistic, you can think on your feet faster, you start to be able to come up with smart solutions to problems that were sticky or "impossible" before. It doesn't have to take long -- a half hour a day is enough to make a difference. Scientology Video: Why we help

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Scientologists Gear Up for United Nations Day Against Drugs

Signing Anti-Drug Pledge

Churches of Scientology around the world will host community drug education activities June 26 in recognition of the United Nations International Day Against Illicit Drugs and Trafficking. Steadfast drug education advocates for more than 20 years, Scientology Churches are inviting local police, officials, community leaders, parents and teens to toughen up their neighborhoods with youth-oriented drug education activities for both young and old.

“To bring about real demand reduction, people need facts they know are real and that’s been missing from most drug education programs,” says Rev. Bob Adams, spokesperson for the Church of Scientology International and a former National Football League player. “To resist a drug pusher, a peer or anyone else encouraging drug abuse, one’s knowledge about drugs has to be certain and firm.”

The Church’s community drug education programs have been conducted at a grass-roots level by both Scientologists and non-Scientologists since the mid-1980s. Adams says toughening up neighborhoods against drugs benefits everybody. “Today we are all affected by drug abuse in some way or another and it’s not just illegal street drugs and youth. Prescription drug abuse is also a huge problem. All of it directly relates to health, crime, and safety, and things people don’t immediately think of in relation to drugs, like success and economics. The truth is that today, if you’re not well educated about drugs, you are at risk.”

In addition to its anti-drug advocacy and community activation, the Church sponsors the Foundation for a Drug-Free World, the international provider of The Truth About Drugs education materials available in 20 languages. Based on authoritative surveys and studies, The Truth About Drugs series includes abundant first hand testimonials in a youth-friendly format: 13 pocket-sized booklets and short videos covering the most commonly abused drugs, a new documentary based on interviews with over 200 former addicts, which can be seen and ordered free, at

The Truth About Drugs Documentary and booklets are upfront, poignant and real,” says Adams. “They empower youth, parents, educators, law enforcement, social workers and anyone else concerned because it’s not about scare tactics—it’s true life experiences with facts.”

The United Nations International Day Against Illicit Drugs and Trafficking was established in 1987 by UN resolution 42/112 to strengthen action and cooperation in achieving an international society free of drug abuse.

Scientology Video: Why we help