2020 – A year of walking in Haiti’s shoes

Please Give Generously To Our 2020 Fall Education Fundraiser https://allsaintscr.com/resources/donate/

By Tina

This year has given us the opportunity to experience first-hand some of the challenges our friends in Haiti face… to walk in their shoes.

That thought first occurred to me after the derecho. We were one of the lucky ones to have a generator to keep things running. The sound of the generator at our house and ones around our neighborhood reminded me of Haiti.

At our sister parish, there is a generator that Fr. Eddy turns on at night. It is a common sound, and not just in the mountains – even the capital city of Port-au-Prince, because electricity isn’t consistent. So into the night you hear the hum of generators.

The derecho itself is something Haitians can relate to, in the form of hurricanes. Winds and rain destroy their homes, crops and trees on a regular basis. Sound like Iowa? Can you imagine making major repairs to your home every year? Or having your crops destroyed and needing to replant every summer? Keep in mind, there’s no insurance or government aid to help people get back on their feet.

How far did you drive or how long did you wait in line to get gasoline? All the while, we struggled to communicate because our phones and internet were down. These are daily challenges in Haiti!

All of the problems we faced (and still face) with the derecho, were, of course, on top of our already difficult situation with the coronavirus. Yes, Haiti has cases there too, as well as outbreaks of malaria and cholera. They know what it’s like to lack the medicine to eradicate disease and infection.

What about the run on toilet paper, milk, food, meat and more? Even when not hit by a hurricane, Haitians face government and economic problems that make it hard to get basic supplies. 

Here, Covid has also led to struggling businesses, high unemployment and limited access to activities, such as mass and Holy Communion. In Haiti, small businesses struggle to compete when donated material goods are continually brought in by well-intended visitors. Unemployment is over 40% and, for the members of our sister parish, mass and communion are only available when Father can make it to their remote chapels.

Of all the similarities 2020 has uncovered, one of the most enlightening is education. For the last several months, many of us have been concerned about how (and if) our kids would go back to school. In Haiti, there are no public schools in the rural areas, so for our sister parish, there is limited access to education.

That’s why education is our primary mission in Haiti.

All of the funds you donate during the Fall Fundraiser are used to help with tuition and teacher salaries for the 24 chapel schools throughout our sister parish. That includes more than 100 teachers and over 4,000 students.

Please donate as generously as you can to the Fall Fundraiser – $150 or whatever you can give – is greatly appreciated. You are doing something good and sustainable for the people of Haiti whenever you donate. This year, we know your contributions are a special sacrifice, and that makes them even more meaningful – because to some small degree, each one of us now understands what it’s like to walk in their shoes.

Please Give Generously To Our 2020 Fall Education Fundraiser https://allsaintscr.com/resources/donate/

Renmen Bondye, Sèvi Lòt Moun, Fòm Disip
Love God, Serve Others, Form Disciples.

Students in Bassin Medor climb the plateau to their school.

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