In the summer of 2010 I went on a mission trip down to Port-au-Prince, Haiti and volunteered with the Haiti Foundation Against Poverty (HFAP). My life was forever impacted by a poverty-stricken nation and its ever enduring people. Nothing could have prepared me for the things I saw and the feelings I felt. I saw destruction everywhere from the earthquake, people trying to sell whatever they could in the markets so they could afford to feed themselves and their families, children working hard to get through a couple hours of school on empty bellies, and cities that comprise of endless homes made from sticks and tarps. While down there, I went to the school HFAP founded, The Les Bous School of Hope, and put on a bible study for the children. The kids’ smiles and laughter were enough to steal my heart. Because of HFAP they are able to receive an education they wouldn’t of received otherwise. This gives them hope, and a future.
I also was able to spend time with kids of HFAP’s orphanage, The HOPE House, who are loved dearly by all the staff of HFAP. They thrive in this environment, nursed back to health when they first arrive and loved unconditionally. The kids are able to get the proper attention and care to overcome the countries hardships. I have seen firsthand how wonderful of a place the HOPE House is. Many kids are not so lucky. In another orphanage in Haiti, I held kids on their death beds, who were deprived of loving attention and proper health care. Unfortunately though, that is all that is available for many children there.
Sickness and hunger was prevalent everywhere I looked, but one thing that remained unaffected by poverty was the Haitian’s ability to hope. Their resilience and faith made me want to do nothing more than to reach out to them in the best way I knew how. Although my ideal way of helping these people is to be there, loving on their precious children and distributing food to tent cities, I can’t do that. What I can do, through the help of my wonderful family and friends, is put on a run that can raise money for a foundation that is down there all the time making an incredible impact on many thankful Haitians. HFAP needs help so they can continue to offer services for people who so desperately want to make a life for themselves.
…I run for hope because I want to see more orphaned children being loved and taken care of in the HOPE house. I want more mothers to learn a business trait so they can provide for their family. I want more kids to finish their schooling in Les Bours School of Hope so they have a more promising future. And I want more families in tent cities to receive health care, food, and to hear the word of God.
Come and join us as we help those less fortunate then us. Save the date! Saturday, March 23, 2013.
Learn more about the Haiti Foundation Against Poverty and its services it provides to Haitian people in Port-au-Prince, Haiti at www.haitipoverty.org
Benley, a baby boy who HOPE house took in while I was there because the mother couldn't afford to feed him. I sponsored him for a year so he could recieve medical treatment, 24 hour care, and food.
Some of the team I went to Haiti with this past summer in front of HFAP's health clinic and 5th grade classroom in Les Bours School
Reading to the kids through a translator
Pierreline, another child living at the HOPE house, is supporting our T-Shirt from last year's run