Greetings! Winter 2012
CHURCHES There has been much activity in the 4 churches lately. Pastor Gilbert Jules held a pastor leadership training with 200 pastors attending. There was a revival held in the village of Bellanger with many people attending each night. There were special Christmas parties and services held at each of the churches also. In a village where there is no running water and no electricity and a very long distance to any type of distractions the people often turn to one of two things. Voodoo provides a type of social interaction for the people. There is music, drinking and entertainment. The Church is the other alternative to this. When Pastor Gilbert started planting churches he picked areas with the highest rate of voodoo worshipers and planted his church right next door to their temple. The Church is a very large part of the social makeup of the village. Meetings are held there, holiday gatherings are there, children attend school during the week there, feeding programs are held there on Saturdays and of course, weddings, funerals and Bible studies and Church services are there. It is very important to the whole village to help keep these Churches alive and well and keep the doors open. A donation would help pay the pastors and keep the church doors open. It was exciting to hear one lady get up and give her testimony about having been a voodoo leader and how she became a Christian. She is now working hard to help others to become believers also. Then after the church service the pastor approached us and asked if we had any spare clothes with us. I asked what size and it was medium men’s size. Yes, we did as the boys wore that size and were leaving their clothes in Haiti when we left. The pastor told us that a man who always wore ladies clothing had come to him to be baptized and wanted to change his ways and he did not have any men’s clothing to wear so he could attend church. We gladly left some for him! We saw a baby in the clinic wearing a necklace made of bone. It is a Voodoo charm to help keep her well. We saw her in clinic and had a great opportunity talking to her mother about Jesus. We hope some seeds were planted! Where are the undernourished? Country Percentage of population that is undernourished Undernourished people (in millions) Congo, Dem. Republic of 69 41.9 Eritrea 64 3 Burundi 62 4.7 Haiti 57 5.5 SCHOOLS This little boy spends his days begging the passing cars to give him a little money for food. So many children do not have the opportunity to go to school. Our American economy effects what we do in Haiti. Donations have been down here so we had to tighten our budget. We went to the parents of the school children and explained that we needed help. We asked them to contribute to the tuition for their children’s education. We now use the tuition to pay for the teacher’s salary instead of ACH paying it. A teacher may make as much as $50 U. S. each month. An average Haitian makes between $1 and $2 a day. We are asking for $5 a month for each student. This is very difficult for the parents to come up with but it was the only solution we could find in these economic times. We are still supplying pencils, paper, crayons, etc to each of the schools to help ease the burden. We have lost some students but we have also given scholarships to others. It is very heartbreaking to visit the schools and see as many as 20 children and even adults sometimes lined up around the fence looking in at the school and learning what they can that way. If you want to sponsor a teacher let us know. We will send pictures and info about your teacher to you. CONTAINERS Containers have been very difficult to get into Haiti since the new president took office there. It cost $10,000 to ship a 40 foot container to Haiti. On top of that the Haitian government is asking for a deposit of $6,500 to release the container from the docks. The deposit will be returned but a friend of ACH paid this amount last May and still hasn’t received the deposit back. It is a very slow process. We have enough items to ship at least one container but can not afford to tie up that much money into it. FEEDING PROGRAM We had sent food to Haiti and also were blessed by donations from Lifeline mission in Haiti with food. But to prepare the food costs money. We have to buy the charcoal for cooking, buy spices, water and drinks. We have to pay a small amount to the ladies that cook the food. Several years ago as we ran clinic we saw many, many, children with orange tinted hair ~ a sign of severe malnourishment. Since providing the children with the Saturday feeding program and also serving lunch several days a week we noticed in Clinic that the number of malnourished children had decreased, but we were still seeing very malnourished infants. We can only believe it was because the infants were not yet in our feeding program. We were offered baby formula that was for the malnourished babies but because of the shipping we had to turn it down. Please pray that the shipping rules relax soon so we may once again ship food to the feeding programs and schools. CLINIC In March a group went and ran clinic for 4 days. Many Haitians were suffering from tummy aches and had cholera. Haiti is a very dusty place and there are many respiratory infections. Bathing is often done in the stream and skin infections and ringworm are common ailments. Mosquitoes are a very big problem and cause many problems such as malaria. We now have a doctor and dentist who come on a regular basis to the clinic. We are so grateful for this. If you would like to contribute to the buying of medicines it would be appreciated. TRIPS In March, John, Jackie, Jacoba and Jonah Settle and nurse practitioner, Andrea Whisenton and her grandson Race Walton traveled to Haiti. After an unexpected stop in Miami for an emergency room hospital visit the trip went well. Clinic was held and also the school children were highly entertained with games and crafts. It was great seeing friends again. In June a group from California visited Haiti and spent the week constructing a roof on 5 classrooms at the school in Carrefour Poy. The children are much happier now that they can spread out. WATER PROJECT A school had used “Help Haiti” rubber wrist bracelets as a fund raiser. After selling them they still had a box left. Jonah Settle, a senior last year, decided to take them to his school and sell them. After gaining permission he sat up a stand and sold bracelets one week. He raised almost all the money needed to purchase a water purification system for the village of Bellanger. Josue’ Michel put the system in, using the knowledge he gained while attending Servants in Faith and Technology (SIFAT) in Alabama last year. EARTHQUAKE UPDATE There is still much rubble in Haiti from the earthquake but it is now being cleaned up at a faster rate. There are still about half a million people living in tents though. CHARCOAL Josue' Michel traveled to Servants in Faith and Technology (SIFAT) in Alabama from August to November 2010 and learned many things he was able to take back to Haiti and teach others. He learned water purification which he used when he installed the water purifier at Belanger. He also learned how to make charcoal, a major source of fuel used in cooking in Haiti. He taught charcoal making in Belanger and here a man proudly displays the results. Haiti has lost as much as 98 percent of their trees due to them being cut down to use to make charcoal. This method of charcoal making does not cut down trees but uses resources readily available. Besides helping the environment, the students now have a skill they can use to earn a living! Thank you Josue' Michel for being such a faithful servant! OUT HOUSE During the earthquake we were given a donation with the stipulation that it help a lot of people and be a lasting, long term project. After seeing the needs following the earthquake many of the immediate needs were for food, tents etc. This did not fit the criteria. But then the cholera came and the largest need was for fresh safe water and outhouses. We were able to supply the water system but we didn’t have an outhouse. It fit the specifications of the donation! It serves many (a 3 holer) and it is lasting (made of concrete bricks). We would very much like to send the newsletter to you by email to help save money. Please send us your email if you want it delivered that way.
Earthquake update: On January 12th, 2010 a major earthquake hit Haiti and destroyed many lives. Businesses were destroyed so people were out of work. Homes were destroyed so people lived in tents. There are still as many as a million plus living in tents in Haiti right now, almost a year after the quake. Family was lost. I had mentioned before in a newsletter that one of the orphan girls that ACH cares for was killed in the quake. I have since found out the details of this. She was hit by a falling wall during the earthquake. Her boyfriend picked her up and took her to a hospital. It was full and he laid her on a mattress outside along with hundreds of others. He went to find a doctor. When he returned she was gone. She had passed away and the truck came and her body was added to the pile. He never saw her again and doesn’t even know where she went. This was a story repeated over and over. Many people are suffering from psychological problems. One man was at a store with his family when the earthquake came, the store collapsed and he was the only one to escape. He stood for many days outside the store calling and crying for his family. One day he wandered off and was not seen again.
Even today only about 2 percent of the rubble has been cleared. It will take many years for Haiti to recover from this. Pastor Gilbert was in a small home when it hit. Next door was a 4 story building. The building collapsed killing 32 people. The rubble is still there and 14 people are still buried beneath it. This is the story all over the country.
The Schools: Because so many schools and homes were damaged the government decided not to reopen the schools until May. It was a confusing time as many people living in the cities no longer had homes and were moving to the villages where relatives lived and where they could obtain food from the surrounding farms. In May our 4 schools reopened with low attendance. Each week as families are coming back into the areas and becoming more stable more children are returning to school. The schools took a short break in August and resumed again in September. We now have a temporary roof on the classrooms at Desca and Carrefour Poy.
The Containers: We were very blessed to have a 40 foot container to ship on May 13th. It was filled with school supplies, clothing, medical supplies, solar panels, and 6 pallets of food. All summer we collected more items and were able to send a second 40 foot long container on October 1st. This one contained clothing, school supplies, medical supplies and food. Between the 2 containers nearly 200,000 meals were shipped. International Disaster Emergency Service was very instrumental in helping with the cost of shipping these 2 containers. A big thank you to them. Also a huge thank you to the person who donated the money for shipping the food from Iowa to Missouri.
The clinic: The clinic was used by several medical teams after the earthquake. Also Dr Legette used it many times to help the people after the quake. She saw many cases of malaria, typhoid and cholera. We are very thankful to have a clinic for the people to come to.
The Churches: The earthquake caused damage to each of the churches but Pastor Gilbert made it one of the top priorities to get them repaired. They were used to house people left homeless. They were a central feeding station as food had become very difficult to get. The night of the earthquake people did not sleep. They congregated in open areas to stay safe and also to pray. Many believed it was the end of the earth and they were calling out to Jesus. The reports came in that prayers and praise and worship songs could be heard in the tent camps every night for weeks. Pastor Gilbert spent much of his time baptizing people and leading worship time. There were special church services with the church overflowing. There have been many baptisms following the earthquake. There have also been several visiting teams come to the churches and hold revivals. At Belanger Church there were over 500 in attendance. Pastor Gilbert has held many revivals over the past year. Many are turning their lives over to Christ. He is very excited at the openness the people are showing to hearing the Word.
Golf Scramble: April 18th we held our first annual golf scramble. A big thank you to all who helped make it possible and to those who enjoyed a beautiful day on the links. The money raised helped pay the cost of the containers not covered by donations. Thank you for making this possible. See you again in the spring.
Feeding programs: After the earthquake I got a phone call from Pastor Gilbert about 1 am – it was the first time he could get through – and his main concern was food for the people. Most Haitians have no refrigeration so they buy their food on a daily basis. Because of money restraints they buy their rice and beans daily also. So when the earthquake hit, they lost the only food they had and the stores, markets and street vendors were not selling so there was no way to get any food. People were desperate and very hungry. Pastor Gilbert spent many hours each day going from place to place finding food and delivering it to the churches so the people could be fed. We are very grateful to Lifeline Christian Mission for donating so many boxes of prepackaged meals to help our program. We are also very grateful to the Kids Against Hunger program for giving us 6 pallets of food and to Meals from the Heartland for 10 pallets of food. These prepackaged meals have been scientifically formulated to give the best nutrition and still be delicious. They contain rice, dried vegetables, spices and vitamins. Each bag contains enough to feed 6 people. Pastor Gilbert has been able to feed the school children, the Saturday feeding program and many starving families. He is very grateful for the help.
Cholera: After Hurricane Tomas Cholera struck. We lost several church members from the Desca church. Many others were very sick in that area. Dr. Legette was once again called into action and she treated the people in the villages. She also went and gave classes on how to avoid cholera. This helped tremendously. While she was busy doing that Pastor Gilbert was busy constructing outhouses at Carrefour Poy and Belanger. Cholera is spread through unsanitary conditions and these were two of the best ways to help alleviate the problem. Water purifiers are also being used so the people have clean water to use. Thank you EDGE and SIFAT.
Hurricane Tomas: This fall Haiti was hit with the rains from Hurricane Tomas. It did not do as much damage as some hurricanes but it was very hard on those living in tents. Many tents were flooded and torn up. Many people were sick because of living in very wet conditions. Mosquitoes bred rapidly in the wet areas and disease was striking everyone. Malaria, typhoid and cholrea were very common.
Sifat: Servants In Faith And Technology accepted an application from Josue’ Michel to attend their fall practicum. Josue’ Michel is a teacher and also does much of the music at the Fragneauville Church. He spent 10 weeks in the States learning appropriate technology to help the people in the villages. He was very anxious to get back and start teaching in the villages. He also was able to take a water purifier back with him. Thank you Josue’ for being a willing servant.
Weddings: Pastor Gilbert shared a story about a couple in Desca Church. The lady and man had been living together for many, many years. The lady had been coming to church. She asked to be baptized on Easter. The church members said no since she was still living with this man. Pastor Gilbert explained to them that she could be baptized and went and talked with the man. He came on Easter morning to watch the baptism. Afterward he invited the church leaders to his home. He said he would like to marry this lady and he also would like to be baptized. In July there was a very large wedding for this couple who gave their lives to the Lord and also set a wonderful example for the village.
There are several other weddings I would like to talk about. Jenny Settle married Bryant Nalagan on June 12th. This is the editor’s daughter who has been very involved in helping with all things Haiti for many years.
Roseline Louis has a wedding planned for Dec. 29th. She grew up in an orphanage and eventually helped as a leader there. She went to college and became a teacher and started a school in Haiti. She has been helping ACH and caring for many of the older orphan girls for years. A very mature young lady who deserves much happiness.
Pastor Gilbert Jules daughter, Melissa Jules, announced wedding plans for July 2011. Congratulations to all these lovely Christian couples.
Storage: A huge thank you to the Settle’s long time friends, Dan Noah and the Burkemper Family for the storage space. We are in great need of a storage area - if you can help please call us.
Donations: Where have your donations gone?? Many people donated after the earthquake. How did we spend the money? Some of it went to help with food. Although Pastor Gilbert was able to get donations of food it still took money to buy clean water to cook with, spices, oil, charcoal, etc. Gas was running over $10 a gallon at one point so even transporting the food was expensive. Repairs to the churches and schools took some of the funds. We felt this was important because these buildings helped the whole community. There were medicines bought for the clinic. These were very important. And one donation went to build the outhouses to help stop the cholera. Thank you to everyone. As the problems are still there we are very much in need of continued donations. Please consider this.
Speaking engagements: We have been kept busy speaking with different groups. We would be most happy to come and speak with your group. Please contact us at the information provided at the top of the newsletter.
Visitors: Ambassadors for Christ in Haiti is very happy to have welcomed several groups to help with our programs. There are trips planned for the spring and fall of 2011. We would try to accommodate your time frame so let us know when you are available to go. If interested please let us know. We would be more than happy to have you join us!
Email: We are trying to save money on stamps, printing etc and are encouraging everyone that has internet to sign up to receive their newsletters through email. We want to be good stewards of our resources. We DO NOT SPAM OR SELL email addresses. We will continue to send out paper copies to those who do not have email. Send an email to
with the word subscribe in the subject line. Thank you so much for helping us with this. Also if you no longer care to receive our newsletter please let us know, we don’t want to send newsletters if you are no longer interested.
I wanted to give everyone an update on Haiti. Pastor Gilbert Jules has been able to call me now. He is safe and as we figured he is busy helping others. He wanted to tell me about all our friends there.
He said most everyone is doing ok, although the food and water situation is getting desperate. Then he told me there was bad news also. Naomi was hit in the head and he thought was in a hospital. Lourdie was in the hospital as she had gotten hurt from falling objects.
Myrlene was shot. I repeated this and asked, shot as with a gun, and he answered yes. He did not know how it happened but she was shot and she is in the hospital.
The really difficult part of this email is to tell you that our dear sweet Daphney was killed when a wall fell during the earthquake. She was one of the girls that we had taken in after they left another orphanage. We provided food, clothing and schooling for 12 girls. Almost every time I went to visit several of the girls would come to visit me. Daphney was very good about coming each time. I have attached 3 pictures off her so you will maybe catch a glimpse of her personality. She was 21 or 22 years old with a bright future before her. I will miss her visits. Please pray for Daphney's family. Also pray for the other girls who were raised with her in the orphanage as sisters. I am sure they are hurting very deeply. I am taking comfort in the fact she was a Christian.
As far as Pastor Gilbert could tell the other girls were ok. He is still seeking information on some but he believes he would have heard if otherwise by now.
One month after the quake
Haitians are a resilant people. This is obvious in their handling of the earthquake. They are cleaning up and finding places to stay. There are tent citys all over the country. People are nervous about going back into buildings as they have had over 30 aftershocks, many of them between 4.0 and 6.0 in magnitude. Buildings are still falling.
ACH had 20 people living in the church at Desca after their homes were washed away last year in the floods that followed the hurricanes. It has been difficult to build housing for them. It will be about $3,000 to build a 16 X 16 brick home for each family. We have now learned that Desca has had another 40 homes fall during the earthquake. Even the church that was protecting the hurricane victims has damage. We are seeking building help for this village.
Fragneauville, a subdivision of Port au Prince was also hit hard and many people lost their homes. We are trying to assess the damage there and figure out the best way to help them.
Feeding the people
Most Haitians have very little if any means of refrigerating food. With little or no electricity it is difficult to store food for long periods. Most people go to the market each day or at least several times a week. When their homes crashed they lost what little food they had stored. They lost their cooking utincils. Food became the number one concern for the people. It took days to get the emergency relief food in to the people. During this time Pastor Gilbert was very busy going to the country to try and buy food there. He was making contact with many different relief agencies seeking help with food, tents and medical care. He saw many fights in the street as people were afraid that the food would run out before they got some. To avoid that he got black plastic bags and put rice into them. He had these three young men deliver the food to the 2,000 people who took up residence at the mission he was staying at.
The Power of Ice Cream
I want to introduce you to Madame Ketly Desinor. She worked in an orphanage in Gonaives. She was home with her 18 month old and her 3 year old when the hurricane hit. The water started rising and she took her 2 babies and raced to the roof. The water started lapping at the roof top while the wind was blowing at as much as 200 miles per hour. She held onto her babies for fear they would blow off or drown. For 3 days she sat holding onto the children with no food or water. They were crying because they were scared and hungry. She sang hymns to them and prayed and listened to them cry.
I am telling you about Madame Desinor because I want you to know what she has been through. She works at an orphanage that was in Gonaives but due to the flood had to relocate and is now renting Rev. Gilbert Jules home. One evening after I had seen so much suffering and despair I went to the 3 rd flood roof and watched the sun go down and the moon come up and had a very heartfelt talk with God. I was upset at all the pain I had seen that day. Madame Desinor came up and checked on me. She asked why I was upset. I told her I was upset seeing all the starving children, the people without homes, the children on the streets instead of going to school, and school children being pulled out of a collapsed building. She left but quickly came back with a cup of Haitian ice cream. This lady who had lost her home and all her possessions had gone to the store and bought me ice cream to make me feel better. It was a very humbling experience. It did make me feel better though!
Voodoo verses the Hurricane
Next I would like to introduce you to Madame Pierre. She is an older lady in the church. She has a son that was studying to become a voodoo priest. Madame Pierre lives in Desca. The small river runs through the middle of Desca as it comes down the mountain. When the hurricane tore through Desca and the waters poured down the mountain many homes in Desca were destroyed. Cars were carried away in the flood waters. People were carried away in the flood waters. Madame Pierre’s son saw the strength of God in the hurricanes and came to church on Sunday morning and confessed his sins and asked for Jesus’ forgiveness and to be saved. Later that afternoon several of the pastors from our churches were in the Desca village trying to help the people. They got a rope strung from both sides of the still raging river. They removed their clothing and held onto the rope and made their way across the chest-high river. After reaching the other side they discovered the body of Madame Pierre. She had been decomposing in the 90 degree heat and the dogs had eaten part of her body. She never had the joy of knowing that her son had turned his life over to Christ.
Church as a Sanctuary
Besides Madame Pierre losing her life in the hurricane Cadet Benardin, an older gentleman in the church also lost his life. Then Benjamin Danisha, a 6 year old boy, and Fritzley Olivier, an 8 year old girl who both attended our Desca School and church, were drowned in the floods.
There were at least 20 houses destroyed in the floods and hurricanes. I saw open fields where clusters of houses once stood. The people turned to the church for sanctuary. They live in the church, but when the school children come they have to leave and come back after school. They have nothing and ACH is now feeding and supporting them. ACH has also paid for the funerals.
Help is coming
Everywhere I went people were begging for help. The price of rice has more than doubled. There were many children as old as 10 that were naked. Many homes had water marks on them as high as the roof. People’s personal possessions had washed away. We are excited to report that one of our containers will be shipped in December. We are still trying to gather funding to ship the second container of much needed items.
School under water
Belanger was difficult to get to as the flooding had left much mud over the roads. They had been scooped but there was mud everywhere. Homes were filled with mud. Our Church/School had had 2 to 3 feet of water in it plus much mud. The gravel pile in the front of the Church waiting to be used for concrete was now all washed away. Much had been washed into the sea including many, many houses. I saw people living on the foundation, where a home once stood, with a tarp for covering. I saw holes beside the road where houses had once been.
More sad news
When Rev. Gilbert Jules was establishing a church in Desca, a Christian man volunteered to rent the land for the use of a church and school. He passed away on Dec. 1st 2008.
Life in Haiti is hard
On a personal note I want to mention how the routine things that we take for granted become so much more difficult in Haiti. Electricity comes on at random hours of the day or night. Sometimes for 2 hours and sometimes for 8. Then there are the days it doesn’t come on at all. Drinking water has to be bought so you have to remember to do that. You can’t just brush your teeth with the water that comes out of the faucet. You can take a shower with the water from the faucet as it is cistern water. With no hot water heaters it is a very cold shower. You might wait 10 or 15 years to get a phone put in your house. Thankfully there are now cell phones at reasonable prices so making arrangements is now so much easier. Pharmacy shelves are empty. Schools are crowded. Cooking is done over charcoal so you start working early to get the fire hot enough to boil the rice water. Only with rice prices being so high this trip at the orphanage we ate boiled corn meal. One night it was 2 pieces of bread with some mayonnaise on it. Life is very difficult just doing the everyday things in Haiti.
I hope you will accept this newsletter as a holiday greeting also. With the food riots in April and the hurricanes and storms in August and September it has been a very busy year for ACH. Now we will be loading one and possibly two containers in December and then making a trip to Haiti to receive them when they arrive. We do want to wish each and every one of you a heartfelt wish of a Merry Christmas and prayers for a blessed New Year.
We would also like to take this time to tell you how much each of you means to ACH and the people of Haiti. We do appreciate the support that has kept ACH going for 5 ½ years. We also appreciate the donations that have been given – enough to fill 2 containers worth. We appreciate each and every big and little thing that is done for ACH. We have gotten calls from schools giving us 200 desks. We also come home and find a pair of shoes in a plastic bag sitting beside our door. It is all appreciated and needed. So as we think of our blessings and our friends this holiday season please know that the ACH board and the people being helped in Haiti do wish the very best for you this holiday season.
Two of our founding board members, Dr. John and Irene Hardin have resigned from the ACH board. John has been struggling with health issues for about 5 years now. His heart is still with the work of ACH but his health should now be his number one priority. We wish him and Irene the best.
I am writing to let you know of a dire situation in Haiti. Haiti is the poorest nation in the western hemisphere. It shares the island of Espanola with the Dominican Republic. Recently the poor people in Haiti have seen such an increase in the cost of food that they are unable to buy it. The average income for a Haitian is $400 per year or less than $2 a day. With the rising cost of food they are now unable to buy the basic rice and beans that they live on. People are starving. Mothers are now feeding their children pies or cookies, made of dried mud, to fill their tummies.
In recent days there have been riots against the government to try and get them to release containers full of food that Non-Profit Agencies have sent. They are also asking the government to help lower the cost of the basic foods they need to survive.
Several Churches and groups in the St. Louis area that work with Haiti have joined together to try and relieve some of the immediate suffering. They are collecting donations that will be put in a bank account and can be drawn on by several Haitian ministers living in Haiti. They have all been running feeding programs but will now be able to continue or to expand them.
Contributions may be sent to 3012 Mockingbird Dr. St. Charles MO. 63301 Mark attention ACH.
Have you ever thought about the 10 commandments? They were written thousands of years ago. They were relevant to the people thousands of years ago. They are relevant today. They were relevant for people in another land and they are relevant for us in the U.S. This tells me that people are basically the same wherever you go no matter in the present or the past. Our human nature hasn’t changed. We all still sin. There is only one answer for this. Jesus. Jesus came to save us from eternal death. He asked that we accept him and be baptized as an outward sign of our inner commitment.
We are so excited that February 24 th there were 11 people baptized at Fragnueville Church in Haiti. While in Haiti in November (The Rev.) Dr. Gary Myers led Stephen to the Lord. He was one of the persons baptized in February. If you would like to be a part of something this exciting please contact Jackie so we can plan a trip to Haiti.
I’m hungry Mom! What’s for dinner Mom? When can we eat? These are questions that I am sure mothers have been hearing since the beginning of time. Modern Moms give an answer which usually contains delicious, nutritious food. Or they might be in a hurry and opt for a drive-thru meal. Haitian mothers are not so lucky. As the price of food rises, more mothers in Haiti are having a harder and harder time answering this question. The cost of uncooked rice is now about 60 cents for 2 cups, which is up 10 cents from December and double what it was a year ago. Beans, condensed milk and fruit have all gone up the same way. The desperate mothers are now turning to the earth to feed their children. Mud pies, or more specific, mud cookies, are now selling for 5 cents each. Mothers are resorting to feeding their children these baked cookies made from dirt from the central section of Haiti. This will fill the children’s tummy and stop the crying for a short while. The problem is there is no nutrition in these. But there are parasites, and toxins to make the children really sick or even kill them. The cookies are made from dirt, salt and vegetable shortening.
Ambassadors for Christ in Haiti feels it is so important to make sure the feeding program continues and that the children are feed every day. I have included a recipe for mud cookies.
Recipe for Mud Pies
Take enough Glaise de Plateau Central dirt; sift it to remove any small stones, twigs, insect parts, bird droppings or other visible impurities. and dry it in the sun.
Pound (in a mortar) and sieve the dried glais
Add a little water to make a soft dough.
Add a little fat and a soup can of salt
Mix all together forming small 2” cookies.
Expose to the sun on a zinc sheet (beaten as flat as possible).
When dry your mud pies are ready to eat.
Mom, can I have a drink? What’s to drink, Mom? Another question that has resounded through the ages. Our modern mom’s will answer with water, juice, milk or even a sports drink or soda. A Haitian mom will answer - water. Water from a stream where animals are drinking or being bathed. A stream where ladies are washing clothes. A steam where human and animal waste is polluting the water. People die from diarrhea, and parasites. Malnourished children are very susceptible to this. Ambassadors for Christ in Haiti is very thankful to Dardenne Presbyterian Church and to Jim and Cindy Keagy especially for the work they are doing to relieve some of these concerns. Their family will be spending Easter in Haiti checking on several water purification systems they have installed in different areas in Haiti. One is in Deska serving the ACH Church, feeding program and School in that village. On this trip the Keagy’s will be installing a water purification system in Carrefour Poy where ACH has a Church, school, feeding program and Clinic. ACH is so thankful to the Keagy’s for giving up their vacation week to help the village of Carrefour Poy.
CHURCHES Many people in the churches cannot read. Often times the leader will tell a Bible story and the people stand up and tell if it is true or false. They have lively, animated conversations over what makes it true or false. The churches baptize about 10 people a year. They do evangelizing each fall. The attendance for the 4 churches is approximately as follows. Carrefour Poy has more than 100 in attendance on Sundays, Belanger has between 35 and 40, Deska has approximately 48, and Fragnueville has about 150 persons attending. Carrefour Poy Sunday school has between 60 and 70 in attendance consisting of adults and children. The youth program has between 20 and 30 children attending.
The tithe for Carrefour Poy is about 20 Haitian per Sunday or $3 US. They also have picnics and holiday parties. They recently decided to operate the church using several Elders instead of one leader, feeling this was more Biblical. They are happy with the way this is working as the people have more of a say in the church business. The leaders could use your support.
SATURDAY FEEDING PROGRAMS Gilbert Jules, the mission founder and Haitian field representative, oversees the feeding program at the four churches on Saturdays. The cooks add other things to the rice such as coconut milk. The children are asking for something different to eat once in a while. Spaghetti is a cheap alternative. Also peanut butter is a good source of protein for them. They could also use some more pots and pans for the feeding program.
SCHOOLS The children use Creole at home, but French is taught at school. It is easier for the younger students to learn French. One of the ways that they reinforce the use of French instead of Creole is when the teacher catches the student using Creole he places a “symbol” on the students desk. The student then tries to catch another student speaking Creole so he may pass on the “symbol”.
After graduation the students can expect to get jobs as mechanical, sewing machine operators, florist (arranging flowers) nursing and teaching. Parents have jobs in agricultural raising beans and plantains.
Subjects covered in school are reading, math, social science, art. School runs from 7:45am to 1:00pm.
Some of the problems that Carrefour Poy mentioned were the need to finish the construction of the 5 new class rooms. In several classrooms they have as many as 65 students per class room. They also do not have enough desks or benches. They do not have enough uniforms. The Belanger students also need shoes. The parents have difficulty coming up with the $120H or $17US to buy the uniforms. The students are charged $10H per month or about $1.40US tuition. There is no enrollment fee. Carrefour Poy needs 2 teachers for kindergarten. Belanger needs another teacher also.
The 4 schools are approved for preschool through 6th grade. At 6th, 9th and 12 th grade the students take a test to see if they are passing that grade level. Right now our schools are approved through 6th grade. There are a few regulations they would have to comply with to be approved for 9th grade classes. Each classroom would have to be separated by a wall. There is water leaking in at Fragnueville School which would deter them from getting their government approval. There is no electricity in the villages.
Attendance for Carrefour Poy is 207 students, Belanger has 50 students, Deska has 65 students and Fragnueville has 65. A generous mission group has given us a wonderful supply of food to feed the school children every day. We have a ladies group who generously helps pay for the cooks, oil, charcoal, and extras needed for the program. They have also provided clean water at Deska. The schools could use your support.
TEACHERS Andersson Romulus – 26 year old young man lives in Carrefour Poy and teaches 5th and 6th grades. He is not a teacher; he is a professor (amount of education). He is also a leader for the young people in the Carrefour Poy Church. He was born into a family of 2 boys and 2 girls. His family does agricultural. He lives with his parents and siblings. He is a Christian and a good man morally and a good example sexually.
Samuel Sam - is the supervisor of Deska, Carrefour Poy and Belanger Schools. He is the principal of Carrefour Poy. He is also an elder at the Carrefour Poy church.
Mibel Francois – Is the assistant Principal to Prosper Bresier. She is married. She is pregnant with her first child. She is a very moral woman. She keeps things organized. She is a Christian of unknown age. Her husband is an Elder.
Josie Michel – very much wants to come to the United States and get his masters degree. He has a school willing to accept him, he can pass the tofol test (required to show he understands written and spoken English) and he wants to return to Haiti to teach.
Aubelin Innocent – would like to finish his Fragnueville School so he can teach up to 9 th grade. He would like to go to school to learn English so he can teach English at his school. He would like a car as it is very far for him to get to school now.
Micheline Polydor – an 11 year old girl at Deska that had a bad fall and never saw a doctor afterwards. Looks like she broke a collar bone and it healed wrong. Would be wonderful if someone wants to contact Shiners or a Children’s Hospital to see if they would be able to help her. Pictures are available.
The people of TaBarre Village now have a feeding program and purified water. There is a possibility to work with Dr. Hubert K Morquette, of World Relief, with propane stoves and micro businesses for the ladies.
ACH girls 5 of the 9 ACH girls came and spent the night on Sunday. All seemed to be doing well, are in school and studying. They looked really good. The girls could use donations to help them finish their schooling.
Clinic The clinic is up and running. Medicines and simple medical equipment is needed. They could use a generator which could be shared with Carrefour Poy School and Church.
Exciting news!!! We will soon be sending a container full of much needed items to Haiti. We are in the process of collecting all sorts of wonderful things to ship to our friends in Haiti. The school children will have uniforms and school supplies. The feeding programs will have food. The naked will have clothing. The churches will have musical instruments and literature (in Creole) There are many sewing materials and sewing machines for the ladies sewing projects. There are even toys for the children. There are wedding dresses for the brides. What a wonderful container full of useful and fun things. Join us in shipping this. Email us on how to get you things on the container or send a donation to help defray shipping and custom costs.