Shiva Schiff, DC Shares a Week of Service in Haiti
Shiva Schiff, is the first certified NSEV Chiropractor. His journey as a healer began while growing up in a service oriented family. From a young age he had the opportunity to work with people in facilities ranging from county homes to hospices. It was a normal occurrence in the Schiff household where a family weekend would be spent at a retirement home or hospital. Those experiences as a child helped Shiva realize that a truly fulfilling professional path for him would be spent helping others.
That path was reawakened when Shiva was travelling through South East Asia and was stricken by an eye condition (central serous retinopathy) that caused him to lose 60% of his vision. Through chiropractic and Ayurvedic treatments he was able to regain his vision. After returning home and experiencing the loss of a family member the condition reemerged. He sought out an old family friend (Daniel Atchison-Nevel) to address the eye condition with NSEV acupuncture and herbs. Shiva recovered fully and further pursued his interests in the healing arts.
To continue his service oriented path Shiva recently went on a trip to Haiti with Chiromissions. On this trip Shiva was able to treat 400 people. Below is a brief account of the trip,
What drew you to Haiti?
I’ve always been fascinated with the Haitian culture, people, and its rich history. Every time I’ve been in Miami I have enjoyed all of my interactions within the Haitian community. Although Haiti has a rich culture, it has been a community that has been in need for many years. When the opportunity presented itself to lend my expertise in Haiti, the only question I had was when?
What part of the country did you go to?
We stayed in the northern part of the country near a town called Ouanaminthe. There was a United Nations base there that we are allowed to stay in while we helped the neighboring villages in the area. The base is about to become decommissioned and the group that I was with was trying to acquire it to turn it into one of the largest orphanages in Haiti.
Describe an average day of providing services?
We would leave the main camp at about 7 o’clock and would separate into two groups and go to different areas in the surrounding community to offer chiropractic consultation along with adjustments. Around lunch time, we would visit the local orphanage and offer chiropractic services to the children along with just spending some time and giving them playful, nurturing love. Then we would go to another location in the community and work until sundown. After that, we would return to the base and discuss the cases we saw over a meal.
What were your accommodations like?
The accommodations at the base were literally barracks. At one point in the trip there were too many of us to fit so we stayed in a community hostel in the city where it was separated into dorms, bunk beds and all. But, my most cherished night was when I volunteered to spend the evening with the children at the orphanage. At the orhpanage we slept on simple blowup mattresses on the roof top underneath the moon. Many of these children were orphans from the earthquake that happened a few years back. It was a wonderful blessing to have the opportunity to give these children the well-deserved encouragement that has been absent in their lives.
What modalities did the patients respond the best to?
They responded well to the standard chiropractic adjustments, but they particularly liked the soft tissue therapy, or massage work. In the standard Haitian workday and life, it is not very common that they receive a tender, nurturing, and healing massage. Actually, in the Haitian dialect, there was no word for chiropractor. They referred to us as, the “touching people.”
What did you do to get past the language barrier?
The group that we were with taught us basic terms, like where does it hurt, for how long, lay on your back, lay on your stomach, relax, etc.. When the situation was more complicated, there were translators available for each group of people.
How long were you there for in total?
The total trip was 10 days, but we spent seven of them in Haiti, and the other three in the Dominican republic.
About how many bodies were you able to work on?
We were able to work on as many people as we physically could. It depended on the type of techniques that the chiropractor used. Some of the people were able to see 150 to 200 people, and others only saw between 40 and 50. I myself, do soft tissue work, so between 50 and 70 people a day. It was the most I’ve ever seen, and although I came back thoroughly exhausted it was also the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done professionally.
Shiva Schiff currently practices at the NSEV Healing Clinic in Miami Beach (305)532-0777. If you have any questions for Shiva please feel free to reach out to him at his office or via email Shiva@nsevhealing.com, for further info on Shiva check out his bio