Every time we go down to Haiti, it is clearer and clearer that GOD is calling us there. It was really difficult to come back this time with so many things up in the air for our kids, but we know that GOD is working. Also, we now have another couple, Jacob and Amy Kelley, who love our kids and live at Christianville that can help us when we are not there. Anyway, here is a brief update from the trip and we will fill in more details later:
1. We got the kids registered at Christianville School!
This school is so much better than where they were last year. Actually, the kids were at 6 different schools randomly scattered throughout the area, and now they will all be going to the same place. Also, we will be able to handle the financial end of things here in the states as we get ready to move down which is a huge blessing. Now, this school is a little more expensive than the previous schools, but it will be very worth it. They will have access to a dental and health clinic, they will have teachers and an administrator with whom we can communicate easily, and most of all they will be at a place that we trust to provide them with an education. We are now in the process of getting their uniforms made (we found and hired a tailor/seamstress), getting their books purchased, school supplies furnished, and school paid for. We are very excited, but please be in prayer that we can raise the additional funds that this will cost while at the same time raising funds for land, salaries, buildings, etc.
2. We learned that things always take longer and are more expensive than you think.
We really knew this already, but we learned this to a greater degree. We struggled trying to get report cards from their schools, finding birth certificates for children whose parents are nowhere to be found, and finding out that the land we want to purchase is going to be almost 3 times as expensive as we first thought. Also, school costs continue to add up as we pay separately for tuition, uniforms, books, people to sew the uniforms, people to purchase the books for us, transportation for the younger kids to get to school, etc. We know that GOD will work through this, and even though it was a little frustrating at times, we are not in the least bit discouraged. We love that GOD has called us here and we cannot wait to be here full time even knowing that there will be some headaches and frustrations along the way.
3. We have a great partner in Christianville.
They have been so supportive and they are willing to help in everything that we need. This is incredible because they have so many things going on there that they do not have to give their time to us, but they do. It is so great to have another ministry with over 30 years of experience in this nation, and they will be a valuable resource for us.
Finally, the kids are awesome. They are so nice and loving and they will do anything for us. They loved the backpacks and shoes that the sponsors gave them (in fact, some of them were just wearing their backpacks around the orphanage pretty much constantly even with nothing in them) and they especially loved the cards and pictures that you sent. You may never understand this, but for these kids to see and to understand that they have people and families who love them, take care of them, and want what’s best for them is absolutely incredible to them. They ask about you all the time, and they desperately want to meet you! It is not about getting gifts (well, to some of the younger ones who don’t understand it is), but it is about the hope that the love of a family offers. Thank You!