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First Anniversary Memorial Service

  -January 11th, 2011 @ 9:17 am

A memorial service will be held, Wed., Jan. 12, on the first anniversary of the 2010 earthquake. Those who perished in the earthquake and who will be remembered at the service include:

Those who have traveled from the U.S. to Haiti to attend the service include:

  • Dolly Dufour and Dorothy West, along with several of Dorothy’s family members, Gary West, Merle West II and Mark West. Each of the individuals are from the New Covenant Church, Clio, MI.
  • , Marysville FMC, WA, former short-term missionary who was in Haiti at the time of the earthquake and buried under rubble near Jack Munos. This is her seventh trip to Haiti. She returns to the U.S. Sat., Jan. 15.
  • Members of the Clear Blue well-drilling team, Cornerstone FMC, Akron, OH, many of whom were in Haiti at the time of the earthquake. They will also take this opportunity to visit wells. Team members include: Brenda Young, Melanie Brooks, Bruce Oberlin, Chris Browne and Dave Hornish. The teams travel dates are Jan. 10 to 13.

Rick Ireland Reflects – Sat., Nov. 13

  -November 16th, 2010 @ 10:01 pm

Rick Ireland Reflects – Sat., Nov. 13

The cholera problem was identified as a major problem in the area around our hospital in Dessalines on a Friday and by Sunday we had mobilized a team of Haitian doctors, nurses, and community workers to go into the impacted area. The medical people helped the overworked staff at the hospital and the community workers went into the impacted area and passed out the 50,000 fliers with information on how to protect yourself from cholera and what to do if it strikes. The report I got back from , an American doctor, was that the Haitian team made a big difference. We didn’t stop the epidemic but we did do what we could do.

“So what do you do when faced with an impossible task? The Haitian church is planning a country wide education campaign. There are things one can do to prevent cholera and other things to do if it strikes that will increase your chance of survival. In the weeks ahead the churches will be very busy trying to help their communities. That’s what they can do. The church here long ago learned that you have to trust God for what is beyond you.

You might be wondering what you can do. First, please keep lifted up in prayer. It faces significant challenges as it rebuilds from an earthquake, a cholera epidemic, and a hurricane. If you want to do something a bit more hands-on, you might consider a donation toward . For $50 you can buy a water filter that can help several families have safe water to drink. Just send your donation to World Missions, PO Box 535002, Indianapolis, IN 46253-5002 and mark your check, ‘Help Haiti Heal water filters.’ Another excellent way to help would be a donation to Clear Blue Global Water Project . This organization is actively drilling wells in many parts of the world, including Haiti. You can also donate to them by sending your check to Free Methodist World Mission and marking it ‘Global .’ The fact that you can’t do everything should not stop you from doing something.”

Give Now

Photo Update: Haiti

  -November 7th, 2010 @ 4:20 pm

From 7 Nov 2010:
Today, I visited what used to be the Delma 53 church. I remember it from my last trip here cause it was one of the buildings that I saw with so much damage it was amazing that it even was still standing. Since then they have torn the building down and moved to a new piece of land with space to grow. There are nearly twice as many people attending services there as there were before the earthquake one lady lead a prayer at the service today who had been trapped in a building that had pancaked only a few feet from the old church.

This afternoon, we visited several other churches and school buildings that had been rebuilt over the last 10 months. One church across the street from a UN tent city with 3000 families had a well provided through clear blue global that is now the primary water source for these dislocated families. The final stop for the day was the sight for a new university the Haitians are building. It’s a dream they had before the quake but motivated by the need to educate there own people to rebuild there own country construction is beginning in the next few weeks to they can start classes next school year.

Fri., May 7, 2010 Update

  -May 11th, 2010 @ 8:48 am

Excerpts from Fri., May 7, 2010 Update

Rick Ireland

More than ever before I am struck by the contrasts of life in the U.S. and life here in . A noticeable number of buildings are being demolished. I remember watching a house be demolished in the States – a giant machine came in and the house was gone in an afternoon. Here they are being demolished by crews of men with sledgehammers. It is a lot slower but things are just as demolished in the end. If there is an underlying lesson it is just this, life is a lot harder here.

This was driven home in a more personal way as I talked with my friend Jean Marc. Jean Marc is a pastor and a very able administrator, and we work very closely together for the relief effort. Last night my head hit the pillow about 9 p.m. and I slept like a log until about 4:30 or so. Jean Marc didn’t get much sleep. He sleeps in a tent in a school courtyard. It rained a good part of last night, and he had to get up and empty the rain that pooled up in the canvas tarps that overhung the courtyard. He was also awakened several times to help his elderly father to the bathroom. But today he was cheerful and full of hope. He went on and on about how God was at work and that we were entering good days for Haiti.

I see that all around me. People are in difficult circumstances but they are approaching life with peace and contentment. I think one of the reasons the Haitian people have been so resilient in their difficult times is that they are not as focused on the treasures of earth which they no longer have.

Other Haiti news

Edwani, wife of the FOHO (Friends of Haiti Organization) caretaker who was killed in the earthquake, recently gave birth to a baby girl. The baby’s name is Jeanne after Pastor who also lost her life in the quake.

, India, FM Church is made up of members disabled by the ravages of Hansen’s disease (leprosy). Some make their living by begging and some by weaving. Out of their meager earnings, they contributed more than $100 to the Relief Fund.

Workers with Clear Blue Global have provided 22 working wells in Haiti since mid-January. They plan to return to Haiti in July and August, as funds are available. To learn more about Clear Blue’s efforts to bring safe drinking water to Haiti and how you can be involved, click here.

Need in Haiti:

The FM recovery program in Haiti requires a geotechnical engineer to join a small team of structural engineers departing soon.
DUTIES: Help in the ongoing assessments of selected FM churches and schools which remain standing following the January earthquake. Help prepare a brief report on findings and conclusions.
ELIGIBILITY: A qualified geotechnical engineer experienced in time-efficient field assessments. A team player who understands and is in full sympathy with the Christian basis for this work is needed for this mission.
MISSION DURATION: approximately one week.
TIMING: soon – to be arranged in consultation with the team leader. Interested individuals should e-mail: conniek@fmcna.org.

Clear Blue Global Water Project

  -May 5th, 2010 @ 4:16 pm

  • 3.5 million people die each year from water-related disease.
  • 84% of water-related deaths are in children ages 0-14.
  • 98% of water-related deaths occur in the developing world.
  • 884 million people, lack access to safe water supplies, approximately one in eight people.
  • The water and sanitation crisis claims more lives through disease than any war claims through guns.
  • Less than 1% of the world’s fresh water (or about 0.007% of all water on earth) is readily accessible for direct human use
  • An American taking a five-minute shower uses more water than the typical person living in a developing country slum uses in a whole day.
  • About a third of people without access to an improved water source live on less than $1 a day. More than two thirds of people without an improved water source live on less than $2 a day.
  • Without food a person can live for weeks, but without water you can expect to live only a few days.
  • The daily requirement for sanitation, bathing, and cooking needs, as well as for assuring survival, is about 13.2 gallons per person.

More wells are desperately needed, will you please help.

Give Now

Haiti Relief Funds – Update 12 March 2010

  -March 12th, 2010 @ 6:19 pm

As of March 5, a total of $1,307,639 has been given through the Bishops Famine and Relief Fund, Help Heal, Operation Hope and for relief, recovery and development needs.

Venezuela has joined the list of countries sending in offerings to help .

Give Now

Clear Blue Water Project Drill Rig Has Arrived!!

  -March 8th, 2010 @ 2:36 pm

GOOD NEWS!!
The has arrived in .

Many helped make this happen but especially Healing Hands International.

Now we need money to go directly to drilling expenses (fuel, casing, bits, pumps, etc.) so that we can get as many wells as possible providing this spring when the need is greatest. We are actively working on getting a shipping container of pumps directly from the manufacturer in India purchased and shipped to Haiti. These pumps are the critical piece for the ongoing delivery of . We can get a limited supply of pumps in Haiti for about $1,000 each but if we buy in quantity directly from the manufacturer we hope to get the price significantly reduced.

Your gifts and prayers, and your willingness to contact others with this urgent and immediate need is vital. Clear Blue is a very lean operation, all . The gifts going directly to the needs, Please help us keep a steady stream of money going so there is no delay in the life-giving resource.

Give Now

More information on the Project please visit their website at www.clearblueproject.com.

State-of-the-Response Report from Bishop David Roller

  -February 25th, 2010 @ 3:03 pm

From Bishop David Roller’s Blog 2/24/2010

Something about this earthquake in touched us at a primal level… It felt like the brokenness of the creation had heaped its shards on this resilient people. How could a people so accustomed to sorrow survive one more devastating blow? As if lawlessness and corruption weren’t enough, and deforestation and poverty weren’t enough, and the hurricanes and hopelessness weren’t enough…now an earthquake to grind home the lesson; the creation is broken and groans for healing and well-being. And there stands Jesus, the healer, the restorer, the first-fruit of God’s plan of full redemption. And there stand Jesus’ people, we who proclaim that the Kingdom of Heaven has indeed drawn near; we who live out the values and behaviors of that kingdom even as we live in this broken kingdom.

from nearly 20 countries have responded to the earthquake, living out those values and behaviors. I’ve been privileged to observe and participate as God’s people have sacrificially sent money to assist their Haitian brothers and sisters. At last count we had received over $840,000 dollars toward the relief and recovery effort. That’s an amazing effort in the middle of a world-wide economic recession!

I have personally been back to Haiti twice since the earthquake and will return this coming weekend, along with a team to continue the oversight and plan for the future.

Let me keep you up-to-date on the process and progress of the response. This may be too much information for some, but others will be interested:

Regarding the Decision-making Process:

  1. The Haitian superintendents team, with input from me, crafts the major contours of the response; we decide what the major components of the relief and recovery should look like.

  2. A Response Steering Committee was set up on February 5th. Composed of 6 Haitian leaders and 1 American missionary this committee makes the decisions regarding priorities. They “steer” the response so it can accomplish the major goals set by the superintendents.

  3. Then the implementers in Haiti, led by and Rick Ireland, put the plans into action. They are both on the steering committee and they are the link to those “on-the-ground.” They are charged with executing the response plan.

  4. Accountability and control links are built into all 3 levels.

Regarding the Funds:

  1. Early on we decided to make this a coordinated response. Even though funds are coming from various sources and through various channels (Int’l Childcare, Help Haiti Heal, Operation Hope, Bishops’ Famine and relief, Canadian and Dominican FMC, and others) we are spending through a coordinated disbursement budget that comes from Haiti. This helps us avoid the possibility of over-responding to some needs and under responding to others.

  2. A disbursement budget was built on Feb 5th, anticipating eventual donations of 1.4 million dollars, broken into three components:

    • $150,000 – Phase 1 Immediate Relief (food, water, tents, etc)

    • $450,000 – Phase 2 Mid-term Recovery (food, tents, hygiene kits, medical, school kits, etc)

    • $850,000 – Phase 3 Long-term Reconstruction (rebuilding of schools, houses, churches)

  3. These “Phases” have more to do with timing than with content. That is, relief activities continue well into phase 2, and will probably need to extend into phase 3.

  4. Even as I write this we’re reacting to the ever-changing context in Haiti and are modifying the above budget. We have built the budget so it is scalable and flexible. We’re hoping that people continue to remember Haiti in the next months and years, even though the news media forgets.

Regarding the Progress:

  1. Funeral services were held on Tuesday, February 23rd on the mission property in Port-au-Prince for the 4 who died in the guest house. We continue to grieve, but not as those who have no hope. These four died in the “line of sacrifice.” Many more Free Methodists died but we do not have an accounting yet. Due to major relocation of people, it’s impossible to know who may have died and who may have traveled to the countryside.

    Jack Munoz is in Texas and healing well. is in Washington and healing well. Madame Desvariste (supt Desvariste’s wife) had a successful 7-hour surgery on Tuesday in Miami and is expected to need months of rehabilitation.

  2. Much has been done to evaluate and prioritize the buildings; determining which must be demolished and which can be rebuilt. Some structures have already been rehabilitated.

  3. Free Methodist work teams have begun to re-enter Haiti. Please contact the office for orientation if you have a team interested in going and register for the training at Haiti Visa Training. Keep in mind that the situation in Haiti continues to involve high risk and teams will want to approach the possibility with a frank acknowledgment of the risks.

  4. Funds have been distributed from day 2 (Jan 13) to enable people to buy food, water, medicine. We continue to distribute money as well as the items themselves. The Dominican church has been an important lifeline, taking numerous caravans of vehicles and supplies into Haiti. But in spite of our best efforts, we haven’t been able to do everything we need to do in a timely way. This is part of the reality of relief efforts.

  5. A program to address children’s psychosocial needs is on the way. Training has been given to West District and South District staff so we can normalize at least one component of children’s lives.

  6. The hospital in Dessalines initially saw an increase in patients and has treated many for free. The hospital has been very generous in their response to effected individuals, and medical teams from North America are also engaging through the hospital.

  7. Tents are in short supply but we’re working every available option to provide temporary shelter (Brazil has a load going in, another shipment through Atlanta, etc). We know that long-term shelter will be needed.

  8. Price quotes are being gathered to put together 2,000 hygiene kits (soap, bleach, toothpaste, etc) for distribution. They are expected to cost about $15 US per kit.

  9. A grant program is being set up to assist pastor to buy the materials for temporary structures. Several groups have developed plans for inexpensive wooden structures with tin roofs that would provide a couple of 10 by 10 rooms at a cost of under $5,000. Other plans are being developed for more substantial homes.

  10. Once the engineering team gives us a better idea of what needs to be done with the repairable pastors homes, a grant program to assist them is in the works

Thank you for standing by the Haitians in this hour of need. How I wish it were only an hour. Unfortunately it’s a long drawn-out crisis. Please continue to pray for stamina for all those involved. Relief workers are stressed, too. Our Haitian leaders are being worn out by the conditions and constant needs. And there is no end in sight. In fact, there is no end. We are still in the beginning stages of a epic struggle. Please continue to pray for God’s mercy.

Water For Haiti

  -February 21st, 2010 @ 8:03 am

The crisis has ignited a new awareness and passion for the urgency of clean, safe water. January 29 a missionary in the Dominican who is helping to take supplies into said, “This is an acute need! There’s not even bad water in many cases. We are trucking in water (an 8-9 hour drive), and it’s a huge effort just to get the smallest bit.” Another reported, “Frankly, we need water more than we need medical supplies.”

GOOD NEWS!!
We were looking to purchase a newer Speedstar drilling rig to send to Haiti as our smaller older rig was on its last legs. After drilling a couple more wells in tent cities, the old rig died. The good news is that in the mean time, the newer rig and compressor have been purchased and an agreement reached with the US military to get it shipped to Haiti.

The rig should be in Haiti ready to drill this month. Many helped make this happen but especially Healing Hands International.

Now we need money to go directly to drilling expenses (fuel, casing, bits, pumps, etc.) so that we can get as many wells as possible providing this spring when the need is greatest. We are actively working on getting a shipping container of pumps directly from the manufacturer in India purchased and shipped to Haiti. These pumps are the critical piece for the ongoing delivery of . We can get a limited supply of pumps in Haiti for about $1,000 each but if we buy in quantity directly from the manufacturer we hope to get the price significantly reduced.

Your gifts and prayers, and your willingness to contact others with this urgent and immediate need is vital. Clear Blue is a very lean operation, all . The gifts going directly to the needs, Please help us keep a steady stream of money going so there is no delay in the life-giving resource.

Give Now

Thank you
We are beginning to see great results from your compassionate and obedient gifts to the cause of clean water through the holidays. We were able to supply the requested funds for the HAITI NEEDS at the current time, and are well on the way for other projects as well.
5 more FRIENDSHIP WELLS are being drilled in Orissa, India, too.

More information can be found at www.clearblueproject.com. Pictures and video of drilling and more news on this site can be found at .

Clear Blue Project – Drill Baby Drill!

  -February 10th, 2010 @ 8:38 am

From – Port au Prince, – Feb 7, 2010

Today we left the house about 5:45 am, this time headed directly to work. We went directly to a canal to fill up the tank on the truck with 300 gallons of water for drilling, then back to the first well site, which was ready for the pump to be installed and dropped off supplies for Snaider to do the work there. We had hoped to do it yesterday, but Snaider got back too late and we were at the embassy too late. Then Kevin and I went to the rig at the second tent city, where we had started the well, but were stopped by broken bearings. I was actually excited to put the bearings in that Snaider had brought back… woops, hold on, the bearing sleeve was about ½ inch too long, so we could not use one of them. We tried every arrangement we could think of with new bearings, but in the end we had to use one badly worn bearing and one new one, but at least it works for now, and that’s a good thing.

The drilling is really tough for this little old rig, hard gravel, which makes this little machine bounce all over. But finally at 105′ we got water, lots of it. Everyone was really happy. We took out the 4¾ inch bit and replaced it with a 6 inch bit, to ream the hole out so we can install casing. We made it to 30′ when the compressor unit abruptly stopped. A rust hole about the size of a pencil had opened up in the bottom of the 32 year old radiator, and the compressor severely overheated. So we loaded up, took the compressor unit back to the CSI yard and tore into it. It wasn’t quite dark when we manhandled the large 100 pound radiator out and into the back of the pickup. On the way back we passed a welding place, so we got it fixed and took it back to CSI. It was too late, so we drove back in the dark, and called it quits for the day.

The bright spot this day was when we drove back we passed the pump Snaider had put in earlier in the day (with a lot of problems), and it was being pumped almost constantly. Not a huge crowd, but steady use from the tent camp. Just think, now they won’t have to pay for water, or walk long distances looking for it, water is right there, readily available and clean! Thank you so very much, all of you who have given and prayed for this work. Progress is very slow with this old equipment, and I am really sorry for that, but we keep going as long as we can keep things working.

My hope is that the compressor engine didn’t overheat so badly that the engine is unusable. We will see tomorrow. I asked the people in the tent camp to pray about it, and I am sure they are tonight as they try to sleep in their new homes. If you have time tonight, pray for them…

Curt King – Port au Prince, Haiti