We have had a busy couple of days here in the Port au Prince area. This team of 12 has really come together in short order. Yesterday (Tuesday) was a very full day. We began the day traveling to Citi Soleil to deliver water to 4 different areas throughout the city. I came away from this experience very conflicted. On one hand it felt very good to be immersed in the community walking with and assisting folks with this life sustaining activity. On the other hand, it was a very emotionally taxing activity to witness and be surrounded by the abject poverty that these Haitians live in. But as they usually do the children were the grounding factor, kids are kids no matter where you are. We also toured Fleri Farms, this is a plot of approximately 26 acres of fruit and other crops that are being used throughout the Healing Haiti operation. The biggest thing I took away from the farm is the effort that is going into the empowerment of the Haitians to succeed in developing their land. And finally, we toured the Hope Church/Clinic/School complex. What an amazing complex this is, built on a trash dump, it is in many ways a miracle that only God could have pulled off. The dedication of the staff, volunteers and community members is very evident by it's success so early on in it's existence.
Today (Wednesday) was not near as physically draining as yesterday, but emotionally challenging nonetheless. We visited Grace Village, this is a compound that is similar to Hope but to my eye is a bit more mature in it's mission. Grace like Hope has a school, clinic and church area. It also has an orphanage, temporary living for children in the area. We meet a missionary family from Minnesota who moved down for a year. It was heartwarming and encouraging to see a nuclear family that is modeling family and working for the grace of God. I am in awe of their ability to listen to the direction of the Holy Spirit! Many team members were reunited with youngsters they either met on previous trips or have the blessing to sponsor them from the states. After this tour we went in to the community to bring meals to the elderly. As a team we also prayed over these elders and sang to them and washed their feet and applied lotion if they wished. The day ended with a tour of the Fleri bakery. This is an amazing bakery that is sustaining the community and teaching skills and providing employment for local Haitians.
Overall, I struggle to put into words how impressed I am with the total vision of this organization. The empowerment of the community is priority one. So many times missions try to help but end up making the area dependent on the mission. Healing Haiti is working it's hardest to put themselves out of work! God is Great and present in Haiti.