November 14, 2017
The time is flying by. November 4th we went to Port Au Prince to pick up our friend Chris Jones , he has been a team member for several years. He came with a cell signal amplifying device to improve our internet. Our internet is improved, we don’t have to go out on the roof to make or receive a phone call. We found late at night, when not many people are using the internet it works really well. We will need to experiment with it to see how we can maximize its capabilities.
Chris also brought over a hundred pairs of shoes. We divided them between two of our schools, fitting the children was a telling story. Many of the children had shoes that were too small. One little girl had two different shoes on. She also had a missing toe nail and an infected toe. The children were very happy to receive the shoes. Many thanks to the people of Dexter Michigan, for donating shoes to the “Creamery” for the school children here in Haiti.
We are having many last-minute meetings with all the groups we are working with. Our cultures are so different that getting a point across can take a very long time. In the US we are taught from the time we are young children how to work in community. Because of our education we are able to understand concepts in-depth (ie density). We try to develop our projects so the community receiving the help also has a realistic investment in the project. This is not the way the Haitians are used to. For years groups come in to Haiti and make changes and then leave. We are far more invested and are asking the same in return from the community. This is a new concept and has been a real challenge to execute. I don’t think there will be much progress while we are gone.
On our way to Port u Prince to get Chris, we stopped and visited a project that starts fruit trees and gives them to people. Tom Baarak runs the project and is very knowledgeable on tropical trees and was a wealth of information. He also gifted us with many new varieties of trees and flowers for our center.
I spent Thursday morning roasting and peeling the cocoa. This took over three hours with many hands helping. I was happy to realize I could follow the conversations around the table and insert my thought or feelings on the subject. This has been a long time coming, lots of studying. Bob’s Creole is also coming; he was able to address the church, without help of an interrupter.
Leaving is always a mixed bag. We are tired and ready to see our wonderful family. Bob and I already have a schedule to visit many of the churches back home that support The Haiti Project. But we are also sad to leave our friends here, and the many projects we have going.
All and all it will be wonderful to be home. We plan to return to Haiti in January and stay until March, then we will go home to pack the shipping container.
Look forward to seeing many of you. Thank you for your prayers, support, and interest,