Haiti 2012 Mission Trip
January 6 - 13
Thank you for your prayer support!
Thank you for your financial support!
Haiti is a little smaller than the state of Maryland. It shares an island with the country of Dominican Republic. It has 1100 miles of coastline. It is populated by over 9 million souls and is one of the most densely populated nations in the world, estimated at 699 people per square mile in 1997. The population is young: 41 percent of the people are between 0 & 14 years old.
Haiti is the poorest country in the western hemisphere. 80% of the people live in poverty, 54% in abject (utterly hopeless, miserable, humiliating, wretched) poverty. Some estimate Haiti's unemployment rate as high as 70%. Those who do work may earn only about $3.00 a day.
The city of Port-Au-Prince is the largest with a population of around 2.5 million. We landed there @ 2:30 PM on Friday, January 6. Just a few minutes riding in the truck was all it took to be assaulted by the dirt, trash and filth.
It is the trashiest place I have ever visited. Dusty, smelly, dirty. We traveled everywhere in the back of an open truck, so we were dirty all day.
from Pleasant View Baptist Church in Oakland, MD:
Matt, Jason, Jesse, Zack, Wally,
Sherry, Tori, Billie Jo, Jessica
from Welsh Baptist Church in Frostburg, MD:
Chuck, Barb, Brittany
from Bill's home church in S. Carolina:
from the Mt Prospect Bible Church in Mt Prospect, IL:
On Saturday we went to the construction site @ 8:30 AM.
Bill Howard, the director of the orphanage, gave us a tour of the lot and the guest house he is working on buying. It is a nice place and will be a great help in the future as teams come to help. We carried blocks for walls of a new dorm. I was exhausted. I have not worked in the heat for decades. We stopped work around 12:30. I walked back to the guest house we were staying at, about 1/2 mile away.
On Sunday we worshiped with a church in a village about a mile north of the construction site. There were about 30 children, 30 ladies and 10 men. I taught the Word through an interpreter. His phone went off about 4 times during the message. The people were responsive and kind. They brought us cold pop after the service. This is the front of the building.
Another thing that impressed me was the dangerous driving: looked and sounded very confusing. Thank our Lord for protection. Thank you for your prayer support.
This was the truck we rode in everywhere we went.
After landing we went to the orphanage in the village of Damien, which is like a suburb of Port-au-Prince. It was clean and the children were happy and well cared for. Jimmy, Patrick and Rose (siblings) run the orphanage. It is named Alex's house. For more info go to http://alexshouse-haiti.blogspot.com.
We only stayed about an hour, then we drove about 3 hours north of the city to the site of the new orphanage, where we worked for the remainer of our time. It was a long day of travel. We were all very tired by the time we slept. The team from western Maryland had left at midnight on Friday. They were very tired.
Here are some pictures of the church.
Monday we worked all day - hot - dirty - extremely tired - did not sleep well the night before - food is great - team is wonderful - everyone worked so hard even though it is very hot.
Wednesday worked all day - haven't worked so hard in about 10 years - very hot - dirty - sweaty - exhausted, but a very good tired - impresses me with the importance of staying in good physical shape - hurt my knee and have had little exercise in the past 3 months - really slowed me down.
Got first dorm almost ready to pour the floor.
Tuesday, I worked in the morning back filling to prepare to pour the floor - seemed hotter than on Monday.
After lunch we went to the orphanage about 4 miles north in Mowee. Deena is running this orphanage. She is about 32 years old.and has been there 3 years.
34 children - grounds are trashy - building needs much help - children were happy - they want affection - some asked to be taken with us - some asked if they could by our family -
orphanage had a hand dug well - children need clean clothes and shoes - they have been taught the scriptures - could tell by their response to questions
pictures from that orphanage:
The boy with his arm around me is Jimson. He never left me. Seemed to want the affection and attention of a man. The next day when the other team members came, he stayed with Wally the entire time. Didn't say much. The girl on my right is Lovely.
We stayed in a guest house about half a mile from the construction site. This is Betty Snyder. She runs the guest house we stayed in. She has been in Haiti for 42 years. Her husband died about 20 years ago and she continues to serve our Lord in Haiti. The Lord has given her grace to help start orphanages, schools and churches in the area. She is a great joy and example of faithful service in the senior years of life.