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Torrance doctor's orphanage in Haiti helps out

January 15, 2010 12:00:00 AM PST
A local doctor is just one of the medical professionals across the country headed to Haiti to help in the relief effort this weekend. He helped set up a clinic at an orphanage in Port-au-Prince before the earthquake hit. It's a cause close to his heart.Dr. Eduardo Anorga, from the Torrance Memorial Medical Center, tries to pack as many medical supplies as possible, donated items that he'll bring with him to Haiti. He helped set up a clinic at an orphanage in Port-au-Prince a year ago.

"They did say that they needed basically bandages, antibiotics, salves, pain medicine," said Anorga.

A video posted online shows people staying outside the orphanage since the 7.0-magnitude earthquake struck Haiti.

"The kids don't want to sleep inside right now and neither do we want them to sleep inside," said Anorga.

Fifty boys and girls live and attend school in Port-au-Prince. Missionaries with Mission Viejo Christian Church were also at the orphanage when the earthquake hit. Officials say one girl suffered a broken leg, but otherwise everyone survived.

Anorga, who usually visits Haiti three times a year, plans to join several teams of volunteers to help with repairs to the orphanage as well as provide medical care.

"I anticipate that as things settle down, infection and diarrhea will probably be the two biggest problems," said Anorga.

"They need all the help they can get. It was in bad condition before this even happened," said Rick Petzolt, who was helping Anorga prepare for his trip.

Before the quake, the orphanage helped feed 100 neighborhood kids.

"They have kids every day showing up at the door and people showing up with kids that need [help], and [they] just have to tell them no for right now because they just don't have the capacity," said Anorga.

"We just are overwhelmed to help them out," said Petzolt.

Anorga is expected to fly into Haiti Monday. He plans to stay one week but is prepared to stay longer.