COCINA, (Coalition of Children in Need Association) a USA-based 501(c) charitable organization partners with Institution Univers and Univers Medical Center in Ouanaminthe, Haiti. COCINA provides the Haiti-based ministries with management and financial support, mission team organization, and economic development expertise and strategies.
In 2004, COCINA received funding for a three-story medical clinic, and in 2006 Univers Centre Medical (UCM) was built. The clinic provides various medical, surgical, dental, and eye-care services to all people in the Ouanaminthe area.
UCM’s services were initially provided only by visiting medical mission teams; but in 2008, COCINA obtained funding to hire a Haitian staff of 24 professional and support personal. The staff now consists of more than 50 Haitians that include physicians, a medical director, dentist, pharmacist, optometrist, lab technicians, nurses, residents in training, and support personnel. In 2010, demands for UCM ’s services were so great that the clinic switched from being open 45 hours per week to being open 24 hours per day, seven days per week. Today, the clinic serves more than 35,000 patients annually.
In 2010, COCINA added economic development to its mission statement, knowing how critical Haitian jobs and job training are to build the country’s economy. COCINA’s goal is to help create self-sustaining businesses run by Haitians that will provide employment opportunities and continued development in the Ouanaminthe area. Since 2012, COCINA’s economic development ventures have included a poultry farm, printing shop, bakery, apartment complex, manufacturing plant, and more. As IU students complete their schooling and its graduates return from college, the opportunities for economic development become even more varied and exciting.