On our final full day on the ground in Haiti we had plans to head out of the Port-au-Prince area to visit a village called Drouin. When we were planning this trip, our visit to Drouin seemed mission critical. This small rice farming community was economically devastated by the huge influx of rice that came into the country as a relief effort after the earthquake. With massive amounts of free rice available, there was no need for locally grown rice.
Disease has been a big issue in this community as well. In the months after the earthquake, the community’s main water source (a small river/creek) became contaminated. This resulted in a major cholera outbreak. The first of the deaths for that epidemic was reported was in Drouin.
So while most of the children in Drouin are not orphans yet, it’s apparent that they’ll become orphans soon if conditions don’t change quickly. That’s why getting our team out there to tell their story was so important.
But when we hit some unexpected obstacles, we were forced to reassess our plans.
What should have been a 15-20 minute sprint down the mountain to the airport (to drop off a couple team members with early flights) turned into a massive 2+ hour trek. The brakes on one of our vehicles started overheating to the point where the driver had to stop and pour water on them for 5-10 minutes to get them to cool enough for us to continue. We still had another 2½ hours to go once we got to the airport, and it didn’t make sense to try to push on, especially with one of our vans already having mechanical issues.
So we asked, “What are you up to God?”
As a result, we cancelled our trip out to Drouin for the day, and decided to head back to Yahve Shamma. Our team cherished the opportunity to return to the orphanage and spend more time with those precious kids, and the leaders who’ve inspired each of us in so many ways.
When we arrived, the children were in school. It’s a tent school on the property that serves the 30 orphans who are cared for by Pastor Gaetan and his wife, plus another 120 kids in the community around the orphanage.
Our team promptly gathered for a meeting inside the main house, and we talked about how we wanted to leave our mark through this trip. I can’t spill all the details of that yet, but I will say that this was one of the proudest moments for me with the Help One Now Bloggers team in Haiti.
Our experience has been so rich in Haiti, and we wanted to leave a legacy. We wanted to leave something that was worthy of what these incredible people have given us.