Monday, March 23, 2015
I wanted to write some more and try to catch everyone up on what's been happening. Sometimes things become so busy here.
Our fourth team in two months actually flew into Haiti with the kids and I. They were a huge help with our luggage, of which the children and I had 26 pieces. Their help was very much appreciated, to say the least. Greg, Mac and Terry were a huge blessing in our Children's Village also. Greg and Mac fixed one of our three 1000 gallon water tanks and arranged the tanks so that there is room for 3 additional tanks. The additional tanks will be used in our new garden project. This is something we have been wanting to do for a few years now. It will include raised beds for vegetables, we will be also be incorporating chickens, turkeys and Tilapia fish tanks into the project. Greg and Mac also built a foot bridge over a ditch in front of the entrance to our Good Shepherd Church in Deberres. They also went to visit another garden project in Mirebalais and our truck broke down. So now it is in Mirebalais with our machanic, who is trying to rebuild the engine. All in a day in Haiti, sigh!
We had a family of 8 give their lives to the Lord last night in Pass Rein. So far this new year we have had 99 people come to the Lord in Pass Rien, including the youth during Carnival weekend. It is just amazing watching God work.
Some of you have been asking for an update on the two new handicapped children in our Children's Village. They are doing well. We have hired a mamma (nanny) just for them. We have also moved them into one of the rooms in the 4 bedroom apartment in the Children's Village. The floors in the apartment are white ceramic tile and easier to keep clean. Which is a better environment for them. It has also been a great teaching opportunity for the other children, one that shows them the value God places on these children. We need diapers for the children, and would appreciate it if any of you feel led to donate cloth diapers for them. The simple prefold type. I think some of the new type of diapers would be a bit fancy and complicated for them. If you have any questions you can email me. Disposable diapers here are for the wealthy and priced accordingly. Also there is already to much trash in Haiti, we do not want to add to it.
We are privileged to be part of a new test pilot program that we are sooo excited about. Mike was talking to a lady named Karen, who is responsible for the Arizona Kids Against Hunger program. We have received boxed food from them in the past. The food is free to our ministry, but we have to pay the $12,000 dollars shipping and duty on the 40 foot container to get it here. Our mission statement has always been To come along side the Haitian people to help them help themselves. We have an all Haitian staff, in our Children's Village, churches, schools and medical clinic. We hire Haitians to do building, painting, etc. One thing that has weighed heavily on our minds has been that the food relief we have received from the states has helped us to be better stewards of the funds given to us, but then does not support the local economy in Haiti. So Mike and Karen have come up with a plan and we are privileged to be the test pilot so to speak. We are just now receiving some of the traditional boxed food. But, Karen has also sent us a shipment of the soy and the fortified nutritional packets that go into the boxed food. We have been working with the local rice growers here in Haiti, and will be buying local grown rice to bag up with the soy and nutrition packets. We will be training Haitians to bag the products up like they do in the states. This way we will be helping the Haitian economy and being wise stewards at the same time. Like I said previously, we are soooo excited to see this work and so is Karen. We really want to see this program help the people of Haiti, instead of hurting their economy. If you are interested in concepts like this a good book to read is When Helping Hurts.
So in closing I can not stress enough how valuable your prayers are. Thank you and many blessings.