January 12, 2010. That’s the defining date for many as they view Haiti today. The devastating earthquake caused massive death and destruction in and around Port-au-Prince (PaP).
Some progress has been made in putting life back together in Haiti in the three years since. But life pre quake, Haiti normal, was not so good for most Haitians. High unemployment, lack of basic services such as electricity, and hunger marked life for many. Especially difficult, then as now, is life for orphaned and abandoned children.
But while some progress has been made, much remains to be done and despite the large amount of money spent, bureaucracy is slow and often misses more than hits. The NY Times gives a detailed and really sad accounting of what has been spent and accomplished over the last three years. One Haitian’s words sum up well the enormity of the problem and the often “miss” in the efforts:
“Lots of money, few results,” said the deputy mayor of Cabaret, Pierre Justinvil. “Look, I personally, with my own hands, have just built a whole school for less than the cost of one of those houses and more quickly. I think we Haitians need to take the wheel.”
Big organizations. Lots of money. Bloated bureaucracies.
The Haiti Orphan Project began in Haiti in April 2010, a few months after the quake. Our ministry there is focused in Gonaives, a three-hour drive north of PaP. Gonaives was not directly affected by the quake of 2010. The city has seen its share of natural disasters as well.
And, our ministry there is focused on vulnerable children (a problem throughout the country):
“The Haiti Orphan Project seeks to meet the incredible need for housing, education and physical as well as spiritual nourishment for orphans and abandoned children in Haiti. Haiti continues to see huge numbers of children who have been truly orphaned or abandoned (practically orphaned). These children, therefore, lack even the basic human needs such as nourishing food, adequate housing and education. Most, if not all, also lack any Christian nurture.”
We’re not a big organization. We’ll not likely be the subject of a NY Times article nor will we be mentioned by the Clinton Foundation.
But, what God has privileged us to be involved in is as important as anything else going on in Haiti. Here are a couple of photos of of some of the people we seek to help:
As God moves people to give to our small organization, we are able to help build housing, schools and water purification systems. We can help provide sweet “house mamas.” Bibles and school supplies can be provided. Food. Clothing. Homes. Medical and dental care. Love. All for these precious children.
Small beginnings for sure. But just a beginning. There are hundreds of thousands of orphaned and abandoned children in Haiti. We’re on village #1.
And, no bloated bureaucracy. No one syphoning off part of the proceeds. No complaints from the Haitian people that we Americans are trying to tell them what is best for them.
So, We’re not going to insert here some sappy appeal for money. It’s very simple. If God moves you to support what we’re doing in Haiti, you can donate here and know that 100% of your donation will be used for these children.
Di Bondye mèsi. Mèsi ou.