OUR FOUNDER

Welcome! Thank you for visiting our website!

I’m excited to give you a glimpse of who I am and how life has led me to embark on such a purposeful journey!

I was born and raised in Cambridge, MA. I went to a private elementary/middle school called St. John’s on Rindge Ave. in North Cambridge. The best part of St. John’s: over 90% of the students were Haitian! It was a surreal experience, that helped shape my love for my Haitian people and culture. I then started high school at Minuteman Regional High in Lexington, MA graduating in June 2006 ready to begin the journey of adulthood.

My excitement came to a screeching halt when I realized I needed to make a decision on what exactly I’d be doing in my adulthood. I always knew my career would be embedded somewhere in the medical field, however in a bold attempt to run from my calling, I decided to attend Johnson and Wales University in Providence, RI. I initially had hopes of becoming an international business woman, but that journey was short lived. After my one-year self-inflicted detour, I transferred to Regis College in Weston, MA to pursue a nursing degree. In May 2011, I graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing. I then returned to Regis College to further my education – graduating in May 2015 with a Master of Science degree to practice as a Family Nurse Practitioner. My nursing career has led me to opportunities in various healthcare settings including skilled nursing facilities, rehabs, home care, and inpatient acute care. I have the most humbling opportunity to help nurse complete strangers back to their baseline health; or assist them and their families during their final moments of life.

After being a nurse for several years I slowly started to notice a trend with some of the most vulnerable patient populations that I cared for: lack of basic health understanding causing a lifetime of complications that could have otherwise been detected earlier or prevented. In 2016, HAMA was propelled into existence to fill that void within my community – the Haitian community.

Long before HAMA had its official name, I always envisioned creating an organization that would improve the health and wellbeing of our Haitian communities. On several occasions, I’ve been asked – why an organization for Haitians only? At first, I believed it was due to my multiple trips to Haiti and growing up immersed in my culture that influenced my decision. However, what I realized is that my “why” ran deeper. My “why” had been deeply cultivated by the Haitian patients I’ve had the opportunity to care for throughout my nursing career. I witnessed their lack of understanding, fear, and distrust towards the healthcare system - which in turn has caused decreased access to healthcare services, poor follow-up with providers, and sub-optimal self-care decisions.

I believe, cultural sensitivity is the fundamental building block to providing strategic health education. For this reason, it is my goal for HAMA to be the premier platform for providing culturally-specific health information to Haitian American communities to improve their health literacy and achieve optimal health outcomes. Although Boston is HAMA’s geographical starting point, I envision this organization transcending borders by collaborating with other organizations and reaching Haitian communities in other states and countries - “humble beginnings make for unforgettable memories”.

Thank you in advance for your support to our organization.

If you’re on Instagram, continue to follow my snapshots of life and leadership: @brenda_lormil

Always remember to “live in purpose, on purpose”

-Brenda Lormil, RN, MSN, FNP-C

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