Sunday, October 30, 2016

Our October

Jason and I are so grateful for each day we have here in Haiti. It feels like we are living on bonus time because we did not know we would still be here at this time when we arrived last year. We are doing our best to make the most of each moment and not take a single thing for granted here… but this does make our days more full!

As many of you know the first part of our October was taken up with Hurricane Matthew. We are so thankful for all of your prayers and for the incredible protection we had from the storm. There are so many, especially in the South of Haiti, who lost so much more than us. Our neighbors who live in a small house not built to withstand hurricanes and a missionary family from the other side of the island (which was hit much harder than Anse-a-Galets) stayed with us during the storm. All of our neighbors’ belongings were wet when they got home, but thankfully, there was no damage to the house. Our missionary friends were able to get some supplies to their village soon after the hurricane and have used this opportunity to encourage the nationals they work with to work together, provide for each other, and trust in the Lord. Please continue to pray for the areas of Haiti that continue to suffer due to Hurricane Matthew and that aid will be provided wisely.
 Our cloudy view for days on end
 After being cooped up inside...
Our city was full of praises after the hurricane passed

We continue to work in the aquaponics garden alongside Nicolas and are passing more responsibility to him. We do not yet have a power solution in place to decrease our generator run time further, but are working to make things as efficient as possible. This includes keeping only the healthiest plants in the system, encouraging plants to produce more, and reworking some of the plumbing. Glynn suggested we spray our passion fruit forest ;) with a vitamin concoction and have been amazed by all the blooms that are popping up. We are hoping for fruit very soon! Please pray for wise decisions to be made about the garden as we work with those investing in it to determine how to proceed with adding more power and the big cost that this would be.

Passion fruit blooms...Growing vanilla vines...Big okra harvests every other day

PVC work

I, Allison, have had a great time working with the nursing students in the skills lab. It is a challenge to keep everything organized, make sure all the competencies are written well (In English and French!), and cover all the areas that the Haitian government requires. However, the students are doing a great job and I love seeing them advance in their skills and critical thinking.

The third year students demonstrating tracheostomy care

Second year students learning about suction from guest teachers

I have also had a great time working with the girls from the Okipe Children’s Village who are learning massage and working to start a business providing this service. We continue to practice a lot and are so thankful to have our very own table now! Our massage therapist mentor, Essie, has been such a blessing as she has continued to stay connected with the girls, teach them new skills, and ask about their needs. The girls are learning and improving in their massage technique, but still very shy about speaking in English with their customers J Pray for them to persevere in their learning and for those of us who are leading to be encouraging and wise as we try to get this business off the ground.
Cartine and Nadelta giving massages

I know I just keep typing, but I just want to take a moment to introduce you to our amazing neighbors. We love this family so much and they always amaze me with their selflessness and joy. Mirland and Toutu live just up the road from us in a one room home along with their 5 children, including a baby boy who was born this month. They have no steady income but are willing to work very hard to provide for their family. While many other Haitians are asking us for things because we are foreigners, they welcome us into their lives, invite us to just sit with them, help us with our Creole, offer to teach us to cook Haitian food, and send the kids over with avocados for us every few days. We are so thankful to have friends like these in our lives and so encouraged by the way they trust the Lord to provide for all their needs. Please pray that we would love this family well and use our resources to help them wisely.
Allison with Smine and Fabiano... with Mirland and Toutu's new son during the hurricane

Toutu worked really hard to fix the road in front of our house in order to earn money for cement to make block for adding on to their home.

Finally, we wanted to let all of you know that we have decided to return to the States in December. We are so very thankful for the time that we have had here in Haiti and are very sad to be leaving, but feel this is the next right thing for us. As we prepare for another transition, please pray that we will live fully invested here in these last several weeks, that we would pass on our projects well, and for God’s guidance as we decide what we will be doing once we move.

Thank you so much for sharing in this adventure with us and supporting us every step of the way!

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