Haiti

Sunday

Feb

18

2018

Haiti Update - February 2018

by Vernon Giesbrecht

A QUESTION – Quick! What is one major cultural difference between the people of Haiti and those in the U.S.? If you’d say that Haitians generally are “relationship-oriented” and Americans are generally “task-oriented”, you’d be right. You’d also be right if you said these two cultures have different concepts of time and planning. Of course lines blur when contrasting the West (N.A. & N. Europe) and the Global South. But it’s important when travelling, say to Haiti on a mission team, to understand these differences. We in the West plan to get the job done and work to get the job done according to plan. While our Haitian friends think it nice to get a job done, but are distracted from the task by standing around talking and laughing, being careful not to offend. They enjoy working alongside of you (a relationship), but if you walk away and return, little has been done in your absence. Of course, meetings and services begin later than planned and usually extend later – they value the community experience. Some might say these are reasons the country is so poor.

Faces Of Hopelessness Tap-Tap (Taxi) On Village Street
Faces Of Hopelessness Tap-Tap (Taxi) On Village Street
Makeshift Village Market Earthquake Damage-January, 2010
Makeshift Village Market Earthquake Damage-January, 2010

HAITI – However, issues surrounding poverty are more complicated. The country lives in the shadow of the comparatively prosperous U.S. And, it is the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere, a land of contrasts and contradictions, a place of inspiration and despair. Eighty percent of its people live below the poverty line, 54% in abject poverty. Out of 1000 live births, 54 babies die. Only half of the population over age 15 can read or write. It has a tragic history of economic instability and corruption, while enduring hurricanes, earthquakes, deforestation and lack of potable water. Add to that human dignity and lack of hope.

Young Faces Of Haiti Local Well - Drinking, Bathing, Washing Vehicles
Young Faces Of Haiti Local Well - Drinking, Bathing, Washing Vehicles

THE PEOPLE – Yet, most Haitians have a resiliency about them even in such difficult circumstances. Generally, they have a happy disposition, with a ready smile and easy laugh. They are open and generous, often offering to share what little they have, while living day-to-day. Infectious joy is evident in their music – just attend a church service! Perhaps Creole, the language of the street, is a commentary on the culture – simple, relational, day-to-day, lack of structure and motivation. Added to all this is what lies in each human heart – selfishness, deception, dependency, distrust, and lack of a moral compass.

Employees Ensuring A Good Crop Reforestation Trees & Greenhouse For Starter Plants
Employees Ensuring A Good Crop Reforestation Trees & Greenhouse For Starter Plants
Chicken & Egg Project Early Tilapia Fish Project
Chicken & Egg Project Early Tilapia Fish Project
Clinic Patient Waiting Area Mission Team-Surgery In Progress
Clinic Patient Waiting Area Mission Team-Surgery In Progress

DOUBLE HARVEST – On the ground for over 30 years, Double Harvest has no illusions about the challenges of serving and ministering in Haiti. We’ve weathered the criticism directed at many organizations and helping agencies: “I’ll be there as soon as the corruption is over.” By the grace of God and the generosity of people like you, Double Harvest is making a dent in the economic and physical lives of the Haitian people within its sphere of influence, while also seeing life-transformation due to spiritual renewal. Please check out previous Updates. Thank you once again for helping us in “Sowing Seeds of Life” in this needy country!

From Pre-School Class To Grade 13 Graduation
From Pre-School Class.... ...To Grade 13 Graduation
Easter Worship Service Gifts Of Bibles-Foundation For Life
Easter Worship Service Gifts Of Bibles-Foundation For Life

Vernon Giesbrecht
N. A. Coordinator