May 2012 Newsletter
by Rev. Vernon Giesbrecht
Dear friend of Double Harvest,
HAITI – The country lives in the shadow of the comparatively prosperous U.S. 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.
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. Infectious joy is evident in their music – just attend a church service! Creole, the language of the street, is related to French (education & commerce). However, in contrast, there are no tenses and no spelling is ever wrong. Someone has described it as “whimsical in sound and warm, loving and childlike in meaning”. Perhaps Creole itself is a commentary on the culture – simple, relational, day-to-day, lack of structure and motivation. Add to all this is what lies in each human heart – selfishness, deception, dependency, and lack of a moral compass.
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.
ANOTHER WAY TO HELP – We encourage you to “spread the word” about Double Harvest to your relatives, friends and colleagues. A great way to do that is by giving them a copy of our recent full-color report/booklet: Haiti - Rebuilding After “1/10”. Pursuing Our Mission. We’d love to send you as many copies as you can use. Just contact us at our address or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you once again for helping us in “Sowing Seeds of Life” in this needy country!