Saturday, August 10, 2013

Day #1 in Haiti

Hello from Haiti!

We made it here yesterday morning about 8:30 am and had a full day of activities.  Angie picked us up at the airport along with Andy.  Angie is the woman who invited us to Haiti and is the one who just opened the Hope House orphanage where we are staying.  Andy is one of the house parents here.  Right now we don’t have many kiddos.  We are still trying to get the old tenant out of the upstairs portion of the house.  Once she is gone we can begin to move in more orphans and get things up and running better.  

When we got to the airport we deplaned and were welcomed into the airport with a live band.  We really enjoyed that.  We passed the band and got in line for immigration.  We were pretty excited to have another stamp on our passport other than Ukraine, oh and the one from Germany when we crossed over to get snacks that one time lol.  As we got to the counter they asked us for an address of which we did not have - whoops!  We had the phone number though, and they sent us to an office and called Angie for us.  We got the address and back in line we went.  Made it through immigration, grabbed our luggage and went through customs.. which was just a person standing there that looked at your luggage tags to make sure they match and sent you through.  

As we were going outside there were these men everywhere that wanted to help carry luggage out.  We tried to tell them no in several ways and they were forceful and eventually pushed Bryan off of the cart.  Angie and Andy arrived after a few minutes and we headed to our “tap tap” also known as a truck with a raised bed and covering to carry passengers in.  This is when we met Nick.  He is here on the trip as a plumber to help build the bathroom!  So, we loaded in the back and we were off.  The roads and the driving made us reminisce of Ukraine; only it was freezing there and it’s hot here! 

We headed to the hardware store to get some supplies to build the new bathroom at Agape orphanage and man was I tired!  I couldn’t sleep the night before because I was so nervous to sleep through the alarm or not get there on time etc.  Angie and I helped the guys as much as we could and then we decided to sit down and visit while watching the cart as the guys finished the scavenger hunt for proper supplies.  Angie shared many things with me about the plans for the week and future plans for the orphanage.  It’s very exciting what God is doing here.  A few hours later we were done at the hardware store.. yes.. hours.. seemed like forever!  We then began the trek home with all our luggage, the supplies for the bathroom, and all of us piled in that tap tap.  I was exhausted and kept falling asleep.  If you have ever been to a foreign country you know the roads are nothing like in America.  So bumpy, huge holes, and lots of honking! You know I was tired trying to sleep in that!  As much as I wanted to sleep, the constant braking and gassing of the engine would keep me awake.  

Anyway, we made it to the Agape Orphanage and were met with so many smiling little faces!  I was awake and filled with joy and excitement and love for these babies!  My tired was quickly going away!  Several girls came running out and yelling “Angie!  Angie!” they would run up and hug us all and then one girl brought me the sweetest little boy and handed him to me.  His name is Christopher and I just fell in love with this boy!  He is only 2 or 3 years old and was a child of a girl that used to live in the orphanage and she left him :(.  He grabbed on and laid on me and hugged me and was just so sweet!  He played with my glasses and ahh melted my heart.  We were only there a few minutes - just long enough to unload the supplies and neither he nor I wanted to let go.  Angie asked me if we were going to keep him and take him to Hope House with us.  I said yes! LOL She promised we’d be back and I gave him a big ole hug and kiss and loved on all the girls and got back in the tap tap to head to Hope House and meet up with the rest of the team.  

Hope House and Agape are right around the corner from one another and I think that is a great thing!  Agape Orphanage is a girls orphanage - although they now have 2 boys, Garson (means boy - guess he doesn’t have a name? and I’m not sure of how he got there - he is new) and of course Christopher and I told you how he got there.  The Hope House will be a mixed orphanage for both boys and girls.  Maybe Christopher and Garson will come over there so Agape can go back to all girls?  Ok, back on track. :)  Angie started working with a couple of orphanages in Haiti after the earthquake and felt God calling her to open another orphanage to help with the orphan crisis and she answered Yes Lord and did so!  Thus we have The Hope House.  Thank you Angie and Chris for listening to the Lord and obeying!  

We arrived at the gate and out came the entire team. Full of smiles and welcomed help carrying in the footlockers and our luggage.  It was great to see people so full of love and hope and passion for the people of Haiti.  We were introduced to each person and got our stuff settled in and we were at home.  Our team consists of Angie Jeffers - the founder of Project One Haiti and my friend Renee Hook’s Mom (how we heard about it), Nick - the plumber/dog groomer, Sandy - the mission trip queen, Melissa - the advocate,  Lindsey - the singer, Madison - the baseball chick, Andy - the translator, and Bob - the champion.  Bob had gone to another area in Haiti to work so we hadn’t met him yet.  

Bryan and Nick got right to work and started the bathroom over at Agape while the ladies went and played with the girls.  These girls are so happy to have us here.  We had a great day!  At the end of the night we had our debrief which was a very special time of prayer, worship, and sharing where you saw God at work that day.  I am loving it here already and am excited to see what God does this week!  

Here's some pictures:

The wax figure in FLL airport- Bryan couldn't decide from afar if he was real or not so we had to go inspect lol

Bryan in the tap tap

Me in the tap tap

This is one HUGE freezer!  

One of the girls - Earlene


Noo Noo 

Another cutie climbing the wall at Agape

Accidental picture but probably one of my favorites

Some people at Agape

Someone in the orphanage at Agape

Look at that boy lovin on me!  Ahh!  Love these two!

Agape Girls Orphanage

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