don't forget about Haiti

Remember January 12, 2010? You remember, the earthquake in Haiti and subsequent weeks of news reporting and relief fund raising? Well, like most major catastrophes in our world, each week since that day has seen less and less attention given to post-earthquake life in Haiti. Yet somehow last week I kept being confronted with Haiti. I realized that places like Haiti still need help. So I want to direct you to where Haiti hasn't been forgotten. Haiti's story still needs to be told - a story still struck with tragedy and pain, but one which offers glimpses of restoration and new life arising out of ruins.

My first reminder of Haiti came with arrival of MCC's magazine, "a Common Place" in my mailbox. In this issue, photographer Ben Depp shares his experience on the ground in Haiti in the weeks following the earthquake. He comments, “What I’ve seen in Haiti since the earthquake is concern for and solidarity with neighbors, sharing of food and resources and resilience in the face of disaster.” My hope is this resilience will extend beyond the immediate relief efforts, hopefully with the ongoing support of us in the rest of the world. To donate to MCC's ongoing work in Haiti, go here.

Subsequently, I was reminded of an orphanage in Haiti called Heart to Heart and wondered how things are, nearly 4 months after the devastation. When my wife was in high school she went on a missions trip to this orphanage in Port-au-Prince. And like most buildings, the orphanage suffered major damage on January 12. But there is hope! Individuals, churches, and communities moved by Heart to Heart's story have been working hard to raise money and gather supplies to rebuild the orphanage. I like how one person describes the work being done on the ground: "This team is packed with 'construction professionals' but I love the way they've included the locals (even the kids!!) in their work... they're teaching skills and building relationships that will last a lifetime."

And then this morning I got my alumni update from Regent College and read about The ApParent Project. These folks call their project the "un-orphanage" in which they give children shelter in the process of getting back to their family. "We target women and men who might otherwise have to relinquish their child to poverty." Reading their stories I realize how little I know of poverty in Haiti. In a time of physical rebuilding, you realize just how important social restoration is along with that.

And finally, I heard the following song on the radio - Young Artists for Haiti - a artistic collaboration that offers hope and inspiration for the restoration of Haiti. Enjoy!


Dora said...

Hi -- this has absolutely nothing to do with your blog on Haiti, sorry, good as it is -- but just a note to say your article in the latest MB Herald is excellent.

David Warkentin said...

Thanks for the compliment Dora! It's always nice to get encouragement on one's writing, as I'm sure you know! I plan to post a link to the article once it's uploaded to the MB Herald site.

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