This was my fifth trip to Haiti with Northwest Haiti Christian Mission and, each year, I love to see how God uses small experiences to create big blessings. This year, as with every year, we had plans of the things we would like to do, but we also tried to leave time to fill other needs. We were so blessed by many people who made donations of goods and money, and we were excited to see how God was going to use what we had brought with us.
On one of the first days there, I asked Caitlin, the campus coordinator, what projects they needed to be done. She took us to the mission’s church building across the street and showed us that a couple of the previous groups had started building shutters for the windows. Without them, rain can flood the building. There were two more windows that needed to be done. So, Nick, John, and I begin to get measurements. We figured out the size and amount of lumber we would need, got an estimate, and then told Caitlin we had the money to pay for it all. After getting the wood, we started working and, since the generator was only on for short periods of time, we had to do most of the work with battery powered saws and drills. Needless to say, it took us almost the whole time we were there to complete the project. Every day we were there it was sunny and warm, but that Friday night, after we had finished installing the shutters, we had a major rainstorm that came through. God provided for us to be able to complete the job just in time!
We were able to throw a Christmas party for the Gran Moun who are the elderly living at the mission. (It literally means “great person” in Haitian Creole.) Some of the members of our team had sent Christmas gifts for them several months before, and the gifts had arrived at the mission while we were there. It was fun to present them with their gifts and throw them a dance party. They were so grateful!
The Miriam Center at the mission is near and dear to our hearts because that is the part of the orphanage for the special needs children. In Haiti, someone with special needs is considered cursed and usually discarded, but the mission is changing that mindset in the community. We were able to bless the missionaries with money to do some much-needed repairs to their facility. After giving them the money, Stephanie, who is the Miriam Center advocate, said that the Haitian director for the Miriam Center had told her he was praying that the next team coming in would bring money to help them with those repairs. We were that next team. We also gave them some extra money to be able to buy peanut butter for eighty outreach families in the community with special needs kids. We took groceries to five of these families, which was such a blessing to them. Three of the trips involved a long hike up the mountain, but it was worth it just to pray with them.
Last year, we started reaching out to the security team at the mission, and they told us no one had ever done that before. This year, we brought in polos printed with “NWHCM SECURITY” and radios for them to communicate with one another. We also were able to build them a cabinet to secure their guns and radios, as well as move lockers in which to keep their uniforms.
We were blessed to be able to give the mission money to help them improve the front gate that had fallen into disrepair. This will keep the kids inside the orphanage, and the Gran Moun, Haitian staff, missionaries, medical teams, etc. safe while they are there.
There is so much more that I didn’t have space here to mention. God used us to help in what seemed like small ways to make a big impact. We were so blessed to play our part in positively affecting the lives of the Haitian people. We pray it will have an eternal impact on all of their lives! If you want to know more just ask any of us that went. You can also watch the video below for more stories.