WellesleyWeston Magazine

FALL 2012

Launched in 2005, WellesleyWeston Magazine is a quarterly publication tailored to Wellesley and Weston residents and edited to enrich the experience of living in two of Massachusetts' most desirable communities.

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volunteering community service helping out doing our part good works contributions neighbor to neighbor philanthropy Bringing Hope to Haiti The Cite Soleil Opportunity Council JENNIFER BLECHER writer four daysafter the 2010 earth- quake that ravaged Haiti, Dr. Lawrence Kaplan found himself sleeping along with 200 strangers on a cement floor next to a drained hotel swimming pool in the country's capital of Port-au-Prince, a very long way from his home in Wellesley. Dr. Kaplan, a retired physician, was in Haiti to provide post-disaster medical support, something he has been doing for over thirty years in countries like Cambodia, India, and Honduras. What he never could have foreseen was that, over two years later, he would still be intimately involved with the country not only as a doctor, but as the founder and president of a non-profit community building organization called the Cite Soleil Opportunity Council (CSOC). Cite Soleil is a neighborhood of Port-au-Prince that has the unfortunate distinction of being rated one of the most impoverished and dangerous areas in all of Latin America. It was there that Dr. Kaplan found a volunteer medical opportunity on his first trip to Haiti immedi- ately after the earthquake. On that trip he treated approximately 1,200 patients in eight days. While Dr. Kaplan remains involved with the medical clinic in Cite Soleil (he's currently the clinic's president), it was on his second trip to the area that Dr. Kaplan had an idea that would provide lasting relief long after the residents' physical injuries were healed. Dr. Kaplan was walking through the streets of Cite Soleil when he noticed artisans making decorative works of art out of scraps of tin and recycled oil drums. Large, colorful pieces that are primarily used as wall decoration, this style of art was originally developed in Haiti in the early 1950s by a blacksmith who made simple metal crosses for a local cemetery. Today, artists use 144 Dr. Lawrence Kaplan prepares to treat patients at the medical clinic in Cite Soleil. WellesleyWeston Magazine | fall 2012 COUR TESY OF CITE SOLEIL OPPOR T UNITY COUNCIL

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