Tom Pavone, Greg Hale and Keith Snyder, Edgewood FMC, Rochester, NY, travel to Haiti, May 20 to 24, to follow up on structural assessments (post earthquake), do some civil engineering and design projects for the FMC and FOHO (Friends Of Haiti Organization) and work on 12 Pillars, an extra mile project.
- We arranged for a Save the Children distribution out of the Parc Chretien church that impacted 700 families and an Operation Blessing distribution out of the Delmas 53 church that impacted an additional 700 families. Both of these were arranged by Jean Marc Zamor who is leading the Haitian relief effort under the direction of a steering committee appointed by the Haitian Board of Superintendents.
- We distributed food and other supplies to 3,054 church members, International Child Care Ministries employees, FOHO employees and other mission staff.
- Money has been given to the West and South District superintendents to meet food, water and medical needs of the churches in the impact area. We have specifically asked the superintendents and pastors to see that both churched and un-churched people benefit.
- We have run three vaccination campaigns in three different locations, vaccinating 646 people against the diseases that will soon begin to rear their heads. The vaccine came from the government, the labor from church volunteers.
- We held a free medical clinic in Port-au-Prince, staffed by Free Methodist Haitian doctors and nurses (a first), that treated more than 200 people. Additional clinics are planned. The supplies came from other aid groups, the labor from church volunteers.
- We gathered and trained children’s workers from churches in the West and South Districts, and set up safe play areas where children can step out of misery and have fun. We have discovered that even before the formal effort, many churches were already impacting their community with children’s programming. Through both donated money and items acquired from other aid groups, we are working to actively enhance this effort which has an impact vastly greater than the local churches themselves.
- We arranged for a team of U.S. engineers to begin the process of evaluating church properties, schools and pastors’ homes. Additional teams are being planned.
- With the help of Linda Adams and Mondale Perkins Oscar of International Child Care Ministries, 230,000 meals will be distributed to the impact area. We are specifically targeting the churches in communities that have had little or no access to aid. Sadly, there are too many of those.
- We have scheduled training (by Asbury Seminary staff) for pastors and church leaders designed to help them with the trauma of recent events so they can help the people they serve. This training will happen at the end of March.
- We have had a leadership summit with key Haitian and U.S. leaders to both review the relief effort and to look toward the future of the U.S./Haitian Church relationship.
- We have begun funding grants to assist pastors to demolish homes and build temporary shelters (something more than a tent) until more permanent housing solutions can happen. Pastors who have land are already offering space to their landless colleagues to get them out of sub-standard tent communities. We are also exploring the possibility of establishing temporary communities to get people out of unsafe camps.
- We are now able to wire money into the Haiti Mission bank account and write checks on it. A team is currently here in Haiti rebuilding the financial system from 1/1/2010 so we will have accurate and up-to-date financial reporting.
- Teams have reroofed the church at Geurin, done repair work at Parc Chretien church and repaired the church at Vialet. They are currently working on both the church and school at Greffin.
Zook was in Haiti on a two-year mission with the Free Methodist Church where she was staying in the four story Friends of Haiti building that collapsed during the 12 Feb earthquake that devastated Haiti. Kelly Perkins was also in Haiti drilling water wells on a short term mission when the earthquake struck. He and others helped pull Katie from the rubble.
KTBV, Idaho News Channel 7 tells the story of Katie Zook’s rescue.
From Bishop David Roller’s Blog 2/24/2010
Something about this earthquake in Haiti 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.
Free Methodist 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:
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.
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.
Then the implementers in Haiti, led by Jean Marc Zamor 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.
Accountability and control links are built into all 3 levels.
Regarding the Funds:
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.
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)
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.
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:
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. Katie Zook 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.
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.
Free Methodist work teams have begun to re-enter Haiti. Please contact the VISA 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Starting at 6 a.m. today, we divided into two teams. Ken LaBelle did many inspections of church buildings, schools and pastors’ homes, checking for structural soundness. It was his sad job to tell Superintendent Clovis and Pastor Jean Marc Zamor their homes are structurally unsafe and have to be torn down immediately to avoid further loss. When Pastor Clovis was informed he simply said: “God knows. God cares. God will provide.” – and continued ministering to other people.
Ken LaBelle has been coaching Pastor George, a Haitian leader, how to do building inspections. My favorite moment of the day was when Ken turned to Pastor George and said: “You do the next inspection.” From then on, Pastor George, a civil engineer, did them with the backing of Ken. He can now continue until more engineers come.
Many people were prayed for after we listened to their stories. Some children are starting to smile.
As we leave Haiti tomorrow, the International Child Care office is almost ready to be used, generators are re-set and working, and tools have been recovered from the FOHO (Friends Of Haiti Organization) building ready to be used by work teams. We also worked on preparing for the Fourth Response Team, arriving from Spring Arbor next Monday.
We are very impressed with the caliber of Jean Marc Zamor, the new Field Coordinator for FMWM Haiti response. Under his leadership, pastors have formed teams to locate church members in the refugee camps and are delivering water and food to many with the resources you send through us.
Participate in the Day of Prayer and Fasting for Haiti, January 27, 2010.
Standing in rubble Sunday morning, I had the honor of preaching at one of our Free Methodist churches. The church and school buildings were unsafe so we met under a tarp in the school’s patio. Surrounded by unbelievable pain and destruction and odor and bugs and thirst and hunger, it was very moving to join with our Haitian sisters and brothers in singing, “For I know whom I have believed, and I am persuaded that he is able …”
We attempted to bring words of comfort and hope and arranged to have water delivered. A team from the Dominican Republic will continue to deliver water and food to people from the church and neighborhood we visited for the foreseeable future.
Some reflections from members of the team after visiting downtown Port-au-Prince this afternoon:
Flattened … It looked like a nuclear bomb had gone off … Total, breathtaking destruction beyond any kind of description. Overwhelming … People burned, still alive. Sorrow …Visible decaying bodies. Smell … Hard to process the suffering. And finally: “The pictures you’ve seen in TV are not true; it is much worse.”
There was an aftershock this afternoon. We fear unstable buildings may no longer be standing.
Alice Judy had asked her husband, Larry, (one of our team members) to find out whether their friend Bill was alive. Larry asked around to anyone he thought might know. No one had heard from Bill since the earthquake, and Larry was increasingly concerned. Today as we returned from church Larry was sitting in the back of an open pick-up truck. Suddenly, Larry heard his name called out and saw his friend Bill waving at him animatedly. Bill and Larry hope to connect again tomorrow. In the midst of so much sadness, devastation and masses of people in this capital city, this felt like a wonderful moment to all of us.
On Monday the team will divide in three. We will start work again at 6 a.m. Ken LaBelle will continue doing building inspections. Dr. Dale Woods and I will meet for a third strategy meeting with the Haitian leaders, after which I will visit schools and pastors with Andy Yardy. Meanwhile Dale will fix generators to make it possible for the ICCM central office to start functioning again.
Be wise in your giving toward Haiti. We have seen people from international organizations jumping out of cars for a quick photo shoot, and then speeding away with their media material. I recommend the Bishops Famine and Relief Fund and the Help Haiti Heal fund.
Thank you for your prayers for Haiti and the Haitian people.
The five persons team includes FMWM’s Director of Mobilization, Area Director for Latin American Ministries, FMCNA’s videographer, a structural engineer, and a long-time FOHO (Friends of Haiti Organization) leader. The “A” team will be on the ground in Port-au-Prince until the Tuesday (26 Jan 10).
Priority will be given to:
- evaluating the structural integrity of the standing schools because they can serve as temporary housing and relief centers.
- connecting with aid and government distribution points for water, medicine, food and temporary shelter.
- creating a plan for effective deployment of relief teams.
A major earthquake struck the nation of Haiti on Tues., Jan. 12. The 7.0 quake centered on the Port-au-Prince area where 19 full FM churches and 12 church plants are located.
At the time, 17 North American FM missionaries were ministering in Port-au-Prince. Three of these individuals remain unaccounted for and are now presumed to have perished in the building that collapsed on them. Bishop David Roller conducted a memorial service at the building site on Sat., Jan. 16, for Rev. Jeanne Acheson-Munos, Merle West and Gene Dufour.
Two other missionaries, Jack Munos and Katie Zook, were med-evac’ed to a Florida hospital where they are recovering. (Personal visits are discouraged so they will be able to have sufficient rest to heal as quickly as possible.)
Cards may be sent to:
North Broward Medical Center
201 E Sample Road
Deerfield Beach, FL 33064
All other FM missionaries are safe and have been evacuated with the exception of one VISA Affiliate couple, Steve and Ruth Hersey.
Ongoing reports continue to be gathered from Haitian pastors regarding the welfare of FM members and sponsored ICCM children.
Response Team: A FM response team, led by Area Director for Latin American Ministries Dr. Delia Nuesch-Olver, will arrive in Haiti this week. They will strategize with the Haitian church for future volunteer deployment and will assess standing buildings for structural safety. Pray for God’s wisdom to surround them.
Day of Prayer and Fasting: The Free Methodist Church has declared Wed., Jan. 27, as a Worldwide Day of Prayer and Fasting for the Haitian Church.
Forum: To share your prayers or words of encouragement for the Haitian church, or to share reflections, go to the forum board at: www.HelpHaitiHeal.org.
Donations: Thank you for your generosity to your Haitian brothers and sisters. Two avenues to donate – Missions Connect and PayPal – are available at: http://www.fmwm.org/give/help_haiti_heal.php.
Prayer Requests: All the people impacted by the earthquake need food, water, medical care and shelter. Pray for recovery efforts and peace on the streets. Pray for God’s peace to reign in the midst of this desperate situation. Pray the many Haitian refugees who are leaving the Port-au-Prince area will receive the assistance they so desperately need.
Updates from Haiti
News continues to trickle about ICCM staff, friends, facilities, and conditions in the area of Haiti affected by last Tuesday’s 7.0 earthquake. Here is a synopsis of news about ICCM concerns to date:
- ICCM Field Coordinator Mondale Perkins Oscar is alive and unharmed. However, he, like most, have lost everything and are living in temporary shelters.
- Many other Haitian church leaders and ICCM staff have been found alive. All Haitian Free Methodist superintendents in the affected area are alive and well. Photo: Bishop Roller with several Haitian church members
- ICCM sponsors over 8,900 children in Haiti,1,867 of which live in the Port-au-Prince area. Specific information about their safety is still not accessible.
- The ICCM Office, Parc Chretien FM Church and ICCM School (HA500), all located together in Port-au-Prince, are damaged but standing. We do not know about ICCM’s 52 other school buildings across the island.
- The Friends Of Haiti Organization (FOHO) building, adjacent to these other facilities, collapsed.
- VISA volunteer Katie Zook and missionary Jack Munos were rescued from the rubble of the FOHO building within a few hours. Both are in ICU but stable and improving in Miami, Florida area hospitals. ICCM Director Linda Adams has been making personal visits to Katie and Jack.
Jeanne with Vanderlin- Missionary Jeanne Acheson-Munos, Merle West and Gene Defour were in the FOHO building when it collapsed but their bodies have not been recovered after nearly a week of rescue efforts. They are considered missing and presumed not alive. We grieve deeply with their families and friends. Jeanne, from Indianapolis and known to many in our U.S. ICCM office, was a tireless advocate for Haitian children and real ambassador for ICCM.
- U.S. Free Methodist Bishop David Roller visited the site of the collapsed FOHO facility on Saturday. After rescue efforts ended, Bishop Roller held a brief memorial service for Jeanne, Merle and Gene. When it is possible to recover their remains, these will buried near the site. Video excerpts of that memorial service at at this link.
- Bishop Roller delivered needed relief supplies at ICCM School HA500, which has been used as a relief shelter site. He spoke words of encouragement and solidarity to many Free Methodists and friends who gathered.
- Free Methodist Media Director Andy Yardy was with Bishop Roller in Haiti and is returning to the U.S. today with insightful video, some of which is posted at the Free Methodist Haiti response website: www.helphaitiheal.org.
How You Can Help
Please continue to join us in vigilant prayer for all who are affected by and responding to this natural disaster. May Christ’s love be conveyed in unsurpassed ways in the response.
The Free Methodist Church is continuing to mobilize its response resources to be part of what is becoming a global compassionate relief effort.
You can follow developments, learn more about Free Methodist responses, our cooperation with other relief and recovery efforts, and consider personal involvement at www.helphaitiheal.org
ICCM is Twittering immediate updates on the situation in Haiti at www.twitter.com/intlchildcare
ICCM will continue to send updates via this special “ICCM Bulletin” to the sponsors and friends for whom we have e-mail addresses. You may also check our website – www.childcareministries.org – for information and other ways you can respond.
Fervently praying friends,
Some of you have prayed through the night. Many of you are led by the Holy Spirit to pray throughout the day. God is at work. God is ALL for all (yes, each one) in all (absolutely every situation.) Praise and thanks to our Lord!
He is at work in your life, and He is at work in Haiti.
Imagine the emotion with each phone call:
A cell phone connection is established with Haitian General Superintendent Clovis. He reports Assistant Pastor Gilot was able to connect at FOHO (Free Methodist Friends of Haiti Organization) site with Andy Yardy and Samuel Luna who traveled in a convoy with World Vision to Port-au-Prince. Andy is shooting video as events unfold.
Pastor Brenda Young reports the Clear Blue team returned safely to Cleveland last night.
A vital e-mail from Superintendent Delamy Bazile reports:
Pastor Devariste’s wife needs medical attention; their house was greatly affected.
Gardy is OK.
Pastor Pierre P. was saved miraculously, but church collapsed.
Pastor Zamor is OK but damage was sustained to house and church.
Pastor Innocent’s wife died.
Many church members are unaccounted for.
Local news affiliates interview to learn of hometown residents affected. May Christ be glorified to learn of their commitment to Jesus!
In the wee hours of the morning, phone communication takes place with David Roller attempting to rendezvous today with Andy Yardy, Samuel Luna and Haitian FM church leadership. Only as Emmanuel is with them will this be accomplished today.
And now a phone call comes from Kendra Luna in Santo Domingo! Sherri Cole is with her in the car. They are riding to meet her husband Russ Cole, Dr. Dan Snyder, Pastor Arron Swenson, Kelly Perkins and Jason Sheets–coming together from three different locations.
Countless scraps of paper of feverishly written notes by phones and computers in Indiana, Ohio, Florida, Michigan, Washington, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Virginia, Idaho, Canada, South Africa, etc. You can imagine your FMC family in orchestration.
Jeanne Acheson-Munos always signs her communication, “For His Kingdom to fully come to Haiti.” Let it be so.