Thursday, January 14, 2010


I'm not going to link to the news about the earthquake in Haiti, unless you are completely oblivious you already know about the tragedy and devastation that has happened there.

What we are trying to get the word out about is Jamie, Ali and their kids at the BRESMA Orphanage.

Jamie and Ali, originally from the Ben Avon area run an orphanage in Haiti, they have been left with no water, no food, no shelter and no way to get their children out of the country.

These kids are the shortest of steps from being adopted in the States, many of them have families waiting here for them. They range in age from infants up to teens and they desperately need help.

Contact your local Congressmen, Representatives, Senators...Anyone who can possibly help Ali and Jamie get the BRESMA kids refugee status.

You can follow the story at Ginny's blog

Please do your part, if you can.
If you know anyone who can help.

From Pittsburgh Post Gazette

Ben Avon sisters in Haitian orphanage trying to save children
Thursday, January 14, 2010
By Rachael Conway, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Two sisters from Ben Avon who live at the crumbling BRESMA orphanage in Port-Au-Prince are pleading for help to get a group of children emergency refugee status so they can come to the United States.

In a text to her husband Doug, Jamie McMutrie Heckman, 30, said she and her sister, Alison, 21, were living in the orphanage's yard with the children without food or water.

"We truly can't keep babies alive ... water contaminated. This is our only hope," she texted, using a stranger's Blackberry. "I want to make sure everyone understands we can't stay in Haiti and the kids will not live if they stay. Riots will start within two days."

Several blogs are keeping track of communications with the sisters and a family friend has started a Facebook page asking people to send petitions seeking help with the childrens' refugee status to their congressmen.

Jason Klanderud of Pittsburgh said he started the page last night around 10 p.m. after speaking with Jamie's husband and her brother, Chad, both of whom he's known for several years.

Since then, more than 300 people have joined the petition group, he said.

Jamie McMutrie moved to Haiti in 2006 to help at the orphanage. Ali joined her a year later. The sisters, both Avonworth High School graduates, intended to stay for a year.

"We quickly realized that the work here would never be done and have committed [ourselves] to staying here as long as we can be useful," Jamie McMutrie said in a telephone interview from the orphanage last month.

The children the sisters want to bring back to the U.S. are nearly through the adoption process and have families waiting for them, Mr. Klanderud said.

Former U.S. Attorney Mary Beth Buchanan said this morning that she has secured the help of a doctor who can examine the BRESMA orphans, has spoken with an immigration lawyer and is in contact with the owners of an airplane company to see if she can get a plane for the rescue mission.

Anyone wishing to make a donation directly to the BRESMA orphanage can do so by visiting

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