Archive for June, 2010

Friday, June 4th, 2010

But these aren’t cockroaches–they’re people

“Want to go with me to the worst place in the city? To Citė Soleil?” John McHoul asked us.

“Sure,” we said. “We’ll go wherever you want to take us.

John and his wife, Beth, founded Heartline Ministries in Port au Prince in 1989.

john and beth mchoul

The ministries have primarily been focused on improving the lives of women and children in areas accessible to their ministry center. But these days, John is finding his heart and dreams being pulled to the desperate lives in Citė Soleil.

man in cite soleil

At this point John is visiting, asking people there what they need, and praying for insight.

When we went with him, he visited 2 tin workers trying to put together details that might lead to providing corrugated for at least some of the houses that right now have little protection from rain.

tin workers

One of the great challenges is that the people on one side of the garbage-strewn canal consider those on the other side to be rivals.

canal through slum

John’s visit sparked a shouting “tug of war,” competing for his attention and presence. Each side wants him to work only on their side, and if they perceive he’s paying too much attention to the other side, they’ll do what they can to cause disruption

rivals arguing

Afterward, John shook his head and quoted a Haitian proverb, “What the cockroach can’t eat, he spoils.”

You can see more photos from Citė Soleil.

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Thursday, June 3rd, 2010

Real Hope for Haiti: Community groups

RHFH’s primary ministries of Clinic and Rescue Center are more than full-time responsibilities within the grounds of the ministry. But that doesn’t keep them from watching out for ways to help the community around them.

A community group gathers regularly in this building. Some of the women are learning to sew. The 2 treadles that were donated in Minneapolis have now been fixed up and are ready to go to their new homes. Thank you!

community group building

donated treadle machines

Haiti is one of the countries in the direst environmental straits. Flying in, I saw bare mountains and brown, muddy rivers.

brown rivers

Trying to address this issue, RHFH has developed one tree nursery. Right now they are waiting for USAID financing that has been promised to plant a second area. The ground has already been prepared there.

tree nursery

They have overseen the planting of hundreds of trees on bare hillsides and are planning for similar efforts and for training people to plant where they have access to land.We talked about what a small effort this seems in the face of such environmental devastation. But it is what one small group can do. May God prosper this as an inspiration to others to hope and do more.

The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof.

You can see a few more related photos.

P.S. The night before we left for Haiti, we heard a provocative story on public radio. It was exploring the difficulties of Haiti’s farmers and others trying to increase their yields and income. The setting for some of the story is in Cazale, the town where RHFH is. May the Lord give wisdom to RHFH and all who are there in his name.

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Tuesday, June 1st, 2010

Real Hope for Haiti: Clinic

Real Hope for Haiti touches people in many ways. The 2 main ministries are the Rescue Center and the Clinic.

crowd waiting for clinic

Early in the morning, Charles distributes numbers to the people waiting outside the clinic gate. Then throughout the day people are admitted in small groups, according to their numbers–250-300 each day. Some have hiked for hours to get here.

Charles & Lori

RHFH is using the Creole translation of For Your Joy, produced by Desiring God soon after the earthquake.

Creole "For Your Joy" from DG

When patients receive medicine, it is important for them to understand and follow instructions. But a high percentage can’t read. So all medications have instructions both in writing and in images.

rx instructions for those who can't read

Babies are often delivered at home and some of the traditional practices can be deadly. At the clinic, each pregnant mother receives a kit of simple items with a money value of $1 or less. But the human value is immeasurable. Rubber gloves, razor blade, alcohol pads, and gauze strips equal the materials to cleanly cut an umbilical cord and bandage the baby’s belly. Much better that cutting with whatever happens to be near and risking infection for the baby.

$1 kit that saves babies' lives

You can see more of our pictures from the clinic.

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