Have you ever been on the front end of a mission? I’ve been on trips and known of others where you partner with an existing program and you build a house or feed kids or provide medical care. But have you ever been part of the group that decides which person’s house is rebuilt (and by virtue of that decision, whose house isn’t), which kids will be fed and treated (and which won’t)? Such was the trip I just went on with Servants Heart.
-Marc, whose church decided that instead of rebuilding their church after the earthquake, their church would meet under a tarp and rebuild the school instead (video).
-Michael S., with a degree in counseling and a love of math, who despite all the odds against them, was able to allow 10% more students to come to school- many of them child slaves.
-Claudel, the old man of God, who still dreams of building a library for the school aged kids of his church.
-Crosley, who is so dedicated to his students that he, his pregnant wife, and two kids lives in a 10×10 tarped off area in the corner of a classroom.
-Micheal Jean, the man with a great smile, who lives with his wife and five kids (including a two week old son) who live in a classroom of the school as well.
-Jean, an award winning administrator who has been able to make great improvements in a few years, but still often runs out of food for the kids.
So who do you think?
These are all good Christian men who love their students and church families and sacrifice so much for them daily. After meeting with them, our little team went to visit each at their church and school (in Haiti, they’re very often the same place), and began to ask questions- how many kids do you have in your school and church? What is your vision for the future? Have you ever done a feeding program? Do you keep good records? And many more. The goal is to pick one place, hope that Americans back home will donate money, pray and visit, work out the kinks on site at the Haitian feeding program, and then have something the other teachers and pastors can successfully replicate if funds allows.
The tough part is that all these kids deserve to eat, they deserve the chance to learn with something in their tummies. Often by 10AM, the kids can’t pay attention anymore because they haven’t eaten. How many of you deal with cranky, hungry kids sometimes? Now just imagine that it’s 100 or 300 kids, every day. They need that fighting chance to be healthy and help their families grow and be proud of them, and help lead their community and country out of the rubble. I guess the answer is to focus on those you can help, even if you’re always reminded there are more.
To learn about what Servants Heart has done for years in the Dominican Republic and is beginning to do in Haiti, and how you can help be a hero in a kid’s life, go to ServantsHeartMinistry.com.