Another warm day for team two, both in temperature and in spirits! We woke up to another wonderful and substantive meal prepared by our gracious caregivers, with the help of a couple of volunteers from our team. After sharing our hearts regarding yesterdays adventures, what to expect anticipating the day to come, and a quick prayer; we departed for our first destination for the day.
Our first destination was Deux Mains, where we were given a very lovely tour and history of the facility as well as their business as a whole by their vice president, Sarah. Deux Mains is a wonderful local business that creates beautiful shoes, bags, wallets and other artwork predominantly out of recycled tires that would otherwise be disposed of through burning, as well as locally sourced raw material and resources. A very large portion of what Sarah explained to us regarding the history of Deux Mains is an issue Haiti faces with well-meaning, but unintentionally harmful efforts various charities and other groups create by donating supplies such as food, water and clothing (Something Healing Haiti itself was once contributing to, but is extending great effort to amend.) Sarah herself explained that before she became a part of Deux Mains, she participated in such well-meaning giving of resources, but realized that doing such had only very short-sighted benefit. Not only was it short-sighted, it was actually harmful to local businesses as well as the already quite fragile economy. There is a lot of need in Haiti, but to simply offer free meals, water and clothing to the population is simply not enough to promote sustainable long-term growth. We cannot simply provide fish without also providing a fishing pole. From this realization, Deux Mains' founder, Julie, founded this incredible business. Deux Mains' mission is to provide sustainable jobs for Haitians. Many of our teammates purchased some of their goods, and they will all attest that every item is top-quality. We encourage all those reading at home to visit their website at www.deuxmains.com to browse and potentially purchase some of these amazing products to help support an even more amazing business.
Our Second destination was the metal market, where local artisans create their lovely art by hand and sell it. There was a vast variety of sculptures, boxes, key hooks, and wall art to be purchased and the local artists were very proud and eager to show us their work.
Our third destination was Dios, an orphanage for special needs children; where we were greeted with wide open smiles, eyes, arms and hearts. The children were so very joyful to have our company and the joy was much reciprocated. We brought crayons, chalk, bubbles, ping pong balls, and a parachute to play and interact with the children. It is difficult to accurately convey the overwhelming love that we received so instantaneously from the children and how willing they were to give it. Jesus' love was clearly present in each and every one of them, and the presence of Christ was unmistakable. We also enjoyed worship with the children and the caretakers in both English and Creole. The experience was a wonderful example of how God's love is universal, and that no matter how far we travel, it is something we cannot escape. After a heartfelt farewell, the team traveled back to our temporary home.
Upon returning back to our temporary home, we decided to enjoy a refreshing rest at a local resort known as The Elite in a resort that was only a few blocks away from home. After a day in the heat, we all thoroughly enjoyed cold beverages and a dip in the pool. We also bonded and reflected upon our day as well as the various lessons we learned together. Following our time at The Elite, we once again returned to our temporary home to enjoy yet another scrumptious meal prepared by our wonderful caretakers. Our meal was a traditionally prepared Creole meal consisting of rice, gravy, chicken, fried plantains, meatballs, and spicy coleslaw. Everyone left the dinner table full and content. We then gathered together to once again reflect on our day, share our hearts with one another, worship with one another, and prepare one another with the help of our Lord for what is to come tomorrow. Not one of us will return home with the same heart that we left with, and for that we are all so very grateful! Please continue to pray for all of us and our mission.
Bondye Beni Ou!
-Hosanna! Team 2