An update from our Founder
Since we’ve been traveling to Haiti, we have encountered many obstacles that should have forced us to think twice about where we were intended to work — in a remote community, Zorange, Bainet, 80 miles from Port au Prince airport, which could take 8 hours to get there. There were times it took us longer than 8 hours to get there. But we kept going. Many of us have said that the first obstacle is the road. There are parts I would call paths not roads but we kept going.
Fast forward to 2021 (July 7, 2021 to be exact) and suddenly it seems travel to Haiti is something that can no longer be taken for granted. This is the day our Haitian president was assassinated.
The last 21 years we’ve had some infamous days: Jan 12, 2010 – the earthquake that shook Haiti to her core and July 7, 2021 – another event that shook Haiti, shook us to the core.
Conversations with Haitians, and Haitians allies brought somber reflections… why hope? Can we hope? Why should the kids in Haiti hope?
I am still working my way out of that news from July 7. I believe it will take me some time to process through it but I am working on that. Our team in Haiti has lost a few days where they pondered, processed the news and all the theories and noises about who did what and why.
But we have all restarted our work in Haiti, and we are proceeding to open school in less than 3 weeks. Our 9th graders and high school seniors have taken their exams in mid and end of July and they await their results.
Our church leaders held a second annual convention in Zorange with more than 4 churches and our former leader, National Director, Germain traveled to Haiti at the end of July to participate in the convention. This year would have been our 3rd year but Covid happened last year and we had to cancel last year’s event.
Our school administration and leaders are planning for a teacher’s workshop that is supposed to take place in the last week of August or first week of September. Folks, our work continues on the ground. Our team continues to show their resilience not to stay down when they’re knocked down but to get up and push forward.
In our 21 years of traveling to Haiti we have experienced this determination from our team in Haiti and I expect it will continue.
We had several trips to Haiti planned before the event of July 7th:
- Dec 2021 (Vision and Electrical teams from NC)
- February 2022 – medical team from Rochester
- March/April 2022 – a possible education trip from NC
As of today all of these trips are on hold. We are watching the situation in Haiti closely to see how freely we can move throughout Port au Prince to get to our destination of Bainet. There is a short stretch of road (possibly 2 miles long) that is impassable and I can’t say when that situation will improve. I had a conversation with one of our volunteers in Haiti last evening who’s currently working in Jeremie. He flies Sunrise Airlines from Port au Prince to Les Cayes and drives to Jeremie. I was very happy to hear that news so I quickly went on Sunrise airlines website to see if they had options for flights to Jacmel from Port Au Prince – they have none. So we wait.
We will resume travel to Haiti as soon as we feel it is safe but our work there Haiti continues. Thank you so much for your partnership, prayers, support and generosity.