free custom research papers thesis titles paper writing services mba essay help coursework service help writing an essay for college essay write service help with essays fake essay writer help writing a paper for college custom essay thesis support writing the thesis best buy research paper purchase research paper online best essays writing service college essay writer websites to type papers database coursework white paper writing services write my paper for cheap custom papers custom research papers who can write my essay please help me write my essay custom essays writing the best essay writing services online custom essays write my college essay paper help writing legit essay writing services degree coursework professional essay writers umi thesis online essay helper thesis writing help urgent essay help help me write a descriptive essay recommended essay writing service best research paper writing services buy a custom research paper custom essays review help to write research paper thesis research thesis coaching online thesis help buy research papers online no plagiarism help on writing an essay need help writing a paper reflective essay help online thesis writing essay custom custom essay UK best paper writing service purchase research paper thesis publishing writing research paper help hire someone to write my research paper help me write my paper custom written college papers writing essays help help paper essay about community service write my essay affordable pay for someone to write your paper buy essays online cheap the best essay writers help writing my college essay buy cheap essay online online paper writing services differential equations coursework help on research papers do my coursework online personal essay writing service thesis topics in education writing your thesis custom essay meister review coursework help help writing college research paper best essay editing service paper writers best online essay writing service help writing paper pay someone to write a paper college papers for sale phd thesis writing who can write my paper for me need help writing essay how to be a better essay writer university essay help the best essay writers college essay proofreading service write my paper in apa format pay someone to write a paper coursework writing service uk custom papers writing essay help toronto thesis consulting essay paper help i need help writing a thesis help essay 123 online essay helper who can write my research paper custom essays essay help best writing services reviews fast essay writing service can t write my essay research paper helper help with writing papers writing a thesis paper writing thesis paper where can i buy a research paper help with essay introduction design technology coursework buy research papers online no plagiarism umi thesis buying essays help on writing a paper best essay writing service reviews essay writers toronto help writing a college paper can you write my essay writing a thesis outline custom admission essay best essay service i need someone to write my essay research essay help essay writers needed i need help writing my research paper purchase a research paper online thesis editors mba essay review service help with research papers thesis literature review Hurrying to help | Celebrate Community

Hurrying to help


Sonoma-based nurse Betty Woods was on a seashore near Roxas City in the Philippines one December day when she noticed two little boys nearby.

She was in the midst of a two-week trip volunteering to help victims of Typhoon Haiyan, and with her fellow volunteers had been treating several hundred patients a day, working outdoors in 95-degree heat and 95 percent humidity.

Nurse Betty Woods of Sonoma checks a child in the Philippines in the aftermath of the devastating November typhoon. (National Nurses United)

Nurse Betty Woods of Sonoma checks a child in the Philippines in the aftermath of the devastating November typhoon. (National Nurses United)

Taking a break, she was collecting seashells on the beach when the boys approached, holding two giant conches, each the size of a basketball.

“I had just been out there taking a breather from the routine, because it was very grueling,” Woods said. “And here these two kids come out of this very poor housing, and they bring me these two conch shells — beautiful, big shells they had gotten on the beach — and they gave them to me.”

“It was extremely touching to have that happen, because it’s the people that you least expect anything from, because they have so little to start with,” Woods said.

Woods, 71, was volunteering as a part of National Nurses United’s RN Response Network. The group has sent more than two dozen nurses from around the country since November to the Philippines to help administer aid as the nation recovers from the disaster.

“We were strangers when we started, but everybody worked like we had worked our whole lives together,” Woods said.

The patients Woods treated suffered from bronchitis and respiratory ailments caused by debris, and from cuts and infections sustained as they tried to rebuild their homes. She also helped children and adults deal with anxiety and insomnia brought on by the disaster.

Serving as a nurse for a half-century, Woods began her career in intensive care. Then she spent 18 years as a family nurse practitioner on the HIV consultation team at Kaiser Permanente in Santa Rosa, and then 12 years at the California Nurses Association as a labor representative.

Now, in “retirement,” Woods volunteers as a nurse on Mondays at the Jewish Community Free Clinic in Rohnert Park and on Wednesdays building homes with Habitat for Humanity.

“I hate the word ‘retire,’ ” Woods said. “I say, ‘I don’t work for money anymore.'”

Her trip to the Philippines was not her first time pitching in after a major tragedy. Woods has traveled to several disaster zones with RN Response Network, including a trip to provide aid in Haiti after its major earthquake in 2010.

Witnessing the amazing ability of people to recover from extreme tragedy put things in perspective when Woods returned to the U.S.

“People here seem to get down and anxious and depressed about relatively simple things, in retrospect,” Woods said. “But there, really horrible things happen, and they’re able to rise above it.”

For Woods, volunteering in the Philippines and in other disaster zones has been an adventure and a privilege, she said. While other volunteer nurses have to arrange vacation time from work, she can get up and go whenever there’s a need.

“People had lost limbs, or sometimes two limbs,” Woods said of the earthquake victims in Haiti. “They lost their families, they lost everything. And yet they had this resilience and spirit about them that is just something that you don’t see here.”

You can reach Staff Writer Cathy Bussewitz at 521-5276 or