Monday, July 25, 2011

Haiti Day 6

This was our last full day in Haiti.  I woke up feeling very nauseated, Rachel was still sick (and didn't join us for the day), and I think Michael and Alex were still recovering.  Everyday we watched from our balcony these boys play soccer with a ball that was less than functional.  We wanted so badly to get them some of our balls, and finally our director let us go down there. I was lucky to have made it up on to the JAC (they finally got it working!) so I stayed behind and watched from above.  I know it made those kids' day! 

 On our way to the Special Needs Orphanage we passed the market. There was raw meat EVERY where. It was so gross. At one point they dropped some on the dirty sidewalk and then picked it back up and put it on the table.  We passed this same way back to the house and it was still sitting out there in the heat, as it had ALL DAY LONG. And we wonder why some of us were sick while we were there...?
 The Haitian people have a BIGGEST moving vehicle has most rights policy.  We were not the biggest, but were pretty big, so most of the time we had the right of way, but this time we didn't and seriously they were within CENTIMETERS of hitting us.  It was nuts! This picture does it NO justice. It was frightening being on the main roads with all the traffic.
 Just a picture while driving of some pre-earthquake construction.
 And we finally arrived at the orphanage!  They were SO SO SO excited to see us.
 We didn't have as much time as we had with the other orphanages here so we made the most of our time while there.  Praise the Lord by the time we got there, the Lord allowed my stomach pains/nausea to flee for the time we were there. That was an answer to prayer because I really didn't want to be useless here. I wanted to love as best I could for the short time we were given.  We got the balls and Frisbees and bubbles out immediately here. They were awesome and shared and loved it!
 This orphanage probably had the best of both worlds. They had a lot of food (in comparison to the others).  In fact they were donating some of theirs during our time there.  (that's awesome).  And we also felt like their emotional needs were being met as they were not nearly as needy of our attention and there did not seem to be the institutionalized "hierarchy" that we saw on Day 4.  That was a breath of fresh air to see someone "get it right".  However, this is all my very unprofessional opinion (on all accounts) and we were only there for a short amount of time. Either way, needless to say, it was my favorite to visit because it wasn't as hard to leave knowing that when we left they were being cared for well.
you can see her Frisbee coming straight at the camera! they were thrilled at the Frisbees!!!

this sweet gal and I played Frisbee for a long time.  I don't know the extent of her mental/physical disability but she was beautiful and had a gorgeous smile.  Anytime I clapped for her, she was half embarrassed and half elated! It was awesome

I played soccer with some of the boys in the beginning and the end.  It was fun even though I know NOTHING about soccer at all. I played goalie for a little while and that is way more fun because I can use my hands...being a volleyball player that felt way more natural ;)

 The second floor is where the "severely" handicapped children are. There were some precious kids up there, some who literally NEVER go anywhere other than the 2nd floor of that building. I am so thankful they have a balcony!
playing (pretending to know how to) soccer!
I went upstairs to meet with the sweet people up there.  It was a great time. This young man is Mario (as best as I could understand).  He had a sweet smile.  I sang Jesus Loves Me to him and he was so excited that he hit me...several times. And he is VERY strong. But it was worth it because I know that was his way of saying thank you and I do believe he knows (better than I) what it means to know Jesus. Oh this precious boy's smile gives it all away. He is just precious (and heartbreaking all at the same time).

Here is Jeff and Mario! 
 Most of the kids were very sweet to those on the second floor.  This little boy brought up a ball and started playing with them on the crowded balcony.  It was just neat to see that.
 He was precious. So sweet and quiet.  He has some minor physical disabilities that were noticeable but all the more precious in God's sight!
 Soccer balls are the best thing ever!
 This is Veh-le' he was precious. Jeff fell in love with him and didn't leave his side the whole time.  He like wearing Jeff's glasses.  Veh-le' has a sweet sweet spirit and is full of joy.  He has severe physical and mental issues but rarely is without his beautiful smile.  He can't talk, but he understands everything you say.  He can't walk, but he crawls with joy and a smile.
 Bubbles were a huge hit!
 Veh-le' lives on the second floor but is able to crawl when he needs/wants to go downstairs.  It was heartbreaking to watch him and not want to just fix him.  But he's never known different and has no idea.  The medical teams that were in before us said he is too far and will never, no matter the interventions, be able to walk, but it doesn't slow him down too much.  And like I said, his heart and smile make up for all that he is lacking.  Oh the lessons to learn from Veh-le'
 Sweet smile.
 They performed for us and we did the salvation bracelets with them.  It was a great time!
 Jeff and Veh-le' again!
 At the end we gave them all stuffed animals. Veh-le' had a different animal that unfortunately was taken from him, but he ended up with this little lamb and he loved it and I think it's perfect...he is a little lamb.  A beautiful lamb of the King of Kings, the great Shepherd, HIS Savior and Healer.  God is good.
 Jeff went with him back upstairs to get some food and to put his lamb and bubbles on his bed. His was the second bunk.  Such a tiny bed for him, but his legs do not go straight, so I guess it's just right.
 We had to leave around lunch time to go back to the TNM house because they had to go get a new washer because theirs had broken and we were also going to get to see some of the completed construction sites that has taken place before our arrival.
 So after lunch we came out to Marie Claire's house. It was built by a team of Haitian and also teams of volunteers from the US.  It was so good to see a finished house after having been on site on Day 5 with nothing completed. It was good to see a visual of how it will all look once it's completed.
 Marie Claire was a very sweet woman who helped build alongside the teams.
 This is her inside her home.  It's very "cozy" and snug but it's perfect and so much better than what she was staying in after the earthquake.
 I believe this behind Alex is her home after the earthquake.
Everyone said how STRONG she was. I think they were speaking of her physical strength but her mental and emotional strength is something to speak of! :)

 After the earthquake this is what she lived in.  I am not sure if she found all the supplies and did it herself or if she had help.
 Afterwards we begged Mark to let us go see Rodney's house. Mostly because Alan had worked on it during his prior trip and had met a young girl named Getche and he really wanted to go back to say hi to her.  So finally Mark said yes (I am not sure he would have heard the end of it had he stood his ground) :)  This is what you have to climb through to get to the house.  But before you get to it you have to climb up a very steep and long incline. Alan was telling us his trip (all construction) was the most physically intense trip he's ever been on.  Mostly because they did everything at the bottom of the hill and then carried it up to the top and through all the brush.  I can't imagine!
 But this is Rodney's house.  It wasn't completed when we visited (and so he isn't staying in it yet), but I saw pictures of it completed since we've been home. YEAH!!!!
 Rodney's aunt gave him a part of their land so that TNM could build him a home! You can't have TNM build a home unless you own land, so that was a great blessing for Rodney!  He and 3-4 others will live in this house. It is the same size as Marie Claire's above.  Crazy to think it will be everything (kitchen, bedroom, sitting area) for 4-5 men.  The bathroom is not inside.
 This is a house dog.  Very skinny just like the ones on the streets.
 This is the bathroom.  I will never take for granted a bathroom again!
 Rodney's house is WAY up in the mountains. It's very beautiful on the way.  We had some gorgeous artwork to see!
 This was an abandoned structure (I am assuming it was damaged in the earthquake but I do not know).
 This little boy was on top of the building and he kept yelling, "Hey, give me a dollar" in sweet Haitian accent.  He spoke no other English, but he saw white people and was taught how to say that phrase from someone.

 On our way home we saw this sign. I don't know what it was like on the other side of the wall but I was VERY curious.  A YMCA? strange.
 People walking and a cow running up beside them. Scared me but they didn't even flinch.

 Beautiful backdrop!

 The guys all thought it was funny that it appeared to have weed growing outside of the compound, but someone else said it was too big to marijuana.  I haven't the slightest clue....anyone?
 Alan was sad that Getche was not there at Rodney's house but I think it was good to have at least tried to see her.
 These are just random pics taken of all the spray paint.  We liked this woman holding a baby and an I love Haiti sign.
 Driving by you don't always get the exact shot you want. This says "Obama we need change" we thought it was funny that someone spray painted that on the wall in Haiti.
 Some more traffic...
 We went back by the Baptist Mission on Saturday to get a few more souvenirs. I found a family of 5 figurine that I've been looking for. It's fun that I found it in Haiti.  And that wraps up Day 6.

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