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We thank God for all the volunteers who have gone to Haiti since the 2010 earthquake to work alongside our Haitian brothers and sisters rebuilding schools and churches and doing the work of relief and recovery. Our VISA Ministries office has processed 602 volunteers since January 2010! Sixty work teams have demolished or repaired buildings; built schools and churches; drilled wells; distributed water filters, food and solar ovens; assisted with medical needs at Dessalines Hospital; and equipped 500 Haitian teachers.
This week we received the report that finally all schools “have a roof over their heads,” either occupying their own schools or using the church buildings. The next phase will be to replace temporary structures with permanent ones and to build schools in the places where sanctuaries have been turned into temporary classrooms.
A great big THANK YOU to all who have gone, all who pray, and all who continue to give generously to support the recovery efforts in Haiti. We are far from done! But we have reached a very significant milestone along this very long journey, for which we thank God.
To make a donation to this ongoing work, click here and select “Haiti Recovery Fund.”
A team of 11, sponsored by the Centennial FMC, Belleview, ON, is currently ministering in Haiti until April 10. This team, made up of members from five congregations in eastern Ontario and led by Pastor Rodney Peterson and Les Young, are doing construction on a church in the Mapou area.
Gene and Kelli Page, Lapeer FMC, MI, are leading a team of 15, April 2 to 9, to Haiti. This team is involved in ministry through maintenance on the properties in Dessalines. Among other supplies, the group has carried in water filters for area families.
Richard Poissant, Canada, travels to Haiti April 5 to 15. He will be doing general construction.
International Child Care Ministries Mark Johnson, Meadowood FMC, CO, has traveled to Haiti this week to assist the International Child Care Ministries office in setting up a functioning computer network in Port-au-Prince. He will also teach the staff in how to use the new database. Mark returns Tues., April 12.
A little over a year ago, Jack Munos was pinned under the rubble of a collapsed building in Port-au-Prince. Tragically, that collapse claimed the life of his spouse, Jeanne Acheson-Munos. Now, Jack is ready to return to Haiti to serve its people – fulfilling a calling to which he and Jeanne committed themselves. Jack, a missionary appointed and commissioned through Free Methodist World Missions, will work in cooperation with the Haitian International Child Care Ministries staff. He will coordinate special ICCM projects, including water filters, solar oven distribution and education, along with other ICCM outreach initiatives. Join us in celebrating this development and in prayer for Jack and his service to the people of Haiti through ICCM. Learn all about ICCM at www.childcareministries.org
The Sawyer company, which produces the PointOne Water Filters that International Child Care Ministries purchases and distributes where most needed, has temporarily reduced the price of water filters by 40% through December 23. These water filters attach to a 5-gallon bucket and purify that amount of water in 20 minutes. The purified water is purer than U.S. bottled water. These water filters are proven lifesavers and are making an impact worldwide. Any individual, family, group or church can now purchase a lifetime water filter for a family for $35.
Click on this link to purchase one or more Sawyer PointOne Water Filters through ICCM. As with all gifts and contributions for ICCM Special Projects funds, no processing fee is deducted from the amount given. All contributions through ICCM are tax deductible to the extent that the law allows.
After December 23, the price will return to $50. Please call ICCM if you have questions: 800.342.5531.
The cholera outbreak in Haiti has thus far taken the lives of more than 1,600 people and hospitalized more than 70,000. At this point, we are aware of only one ICCM-sponsored child who has perished as a result of this unexpected epidemic. Recently, ICCM staff in Port-au-Prince received hundreds of Sawyer water filters to distribute where most needed to combat this deadly disease. The Free Methodist hospital in Dessalines, Haiti, is being used by Doctors Without Borders to treat many who are suffering. Please join us in vigilant prayer and compassionate responses. You can purchase and send a lifetime water filter costing $50 to Haiti through ICCM at this link.
From Andy Yardy 7 Nov 2010:
Today, I visited what used to be the Delma 53 free Methodist 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 Gaardine Liberte 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 water project 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.
It’s been ten months since the devastating earthquake that hit Haiti in January. My memories of Haiti that stuck with me the scenes of devastation, hurting people and the smell of death. I have heard good things of what has happened here in the months since but it’s hard to mesh that reality with what I saw during that initial trip to port-au-prince to just see how the children from the international child care ministries schools and the free Methodist church got through this disaster. Today I landed in a much different city. If you know what your looking for it’s still apparent they had a major earthquake. Like the airport terminal is a undersized warehouse since the terminal has been damaged. There are empty lots where there used to be buildings and of course scores of tent cities to house the homeless. But it was in the eyes of the people at the santo ICCM school that I saw the real hope for Haiti. The shock has been replaced with determination to help see this little corner of Haiti heal.
Latest report from weather.com: Hurricane Tomas intensified a little bit overnight. As of 5 am EDT Thursday, Tropical Storm Tomas was located about 315 miles to the southwest of Port-au Prince, Haiti. Tomas is forecast to intensify into a hurricane Friday morning as it passes just west of Haiti. Hurricane conditions could linger into Friday night or Saturday morning. Rainfall could total 5 to 10 inches with some amounts up to 15 inches possible in the mountains.
Phases 1 and 2 of the recovery plan (which have been completed) included the following:
More than 1,000 people were vaccinated and more than 2,000 people were seen in free clinics. These clinics were staffed by Haitian medical people volunteering their time to serve their churches and communities.
We (the steering committee) have worked extensively with the local churches to develop programming for children prior to the restart of school.
We conducted distributions at every church in the West and South Districts. Some of these churches are hours from Port-au-Prince, and this was the only help these people received. We have also distributed relief supplies to school staffs.
We have given grants to 29 pastors to provide for provisional shelter and to an additional 19 pastors to assist in repairing their homes.
We have assisted a number of churches in demolition. The typical pattern is that local church people provide the labor to take down the buildings and we provide money to have the rubble hauled away.
We have been identifying and funding projects that can be accomplished with Haitian labor.
We have made major progress in rebuilding the financial system and hope to be done in the next week or so.
The Bible school has restarted.
Nearly a dozen sites have lost both their church and school. We are working hard to get at least one usable structure at every site.
New building materials are being tested: a new (to us) steel frame building structure and a new (to Haiti) type of foam core building.
We are expecting a major shipment of tents.
We are looking at the possibility of a second pastors’ retreat. The first retreat was limited to only West and South District pastors. We would like to do something for all pastors and wives. The earthquake has had an impact far beyond Port-au-Prince. Superintendent Charite reports that in his region alone the population has swelled by 156,000 people and the schools are serving 20,000 additional students.
We are planning major subsidies to all FM schools to assist them in paying for staff.
We need to continue to rebuild the administrative structure of the mission in Haiti. This begins with finances but there are a number of other things, such as government reports and permits that need to be brought up to date as the government structure gets back to normal.
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: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Free Methodist Church has responded in incredible ways to the crisis of the January 12 earthquake in Haiti. From the beginning, God has clearly been at work confirming an action plan that not only provided immediate relief, but is producing long-range impact through rebuilding projects and healthy long-term sustainability.
Two key leadership gatherings in Haiti:
Bishop Roller visited Haiti immediately after the earthquake. A few days later, was on site. The unanimous decision was to submit to the leadership of the Haitian superintendents with the following results:
They formed a Response Steering Committee: six Haitian superintendents and Pastor Rick Ireland as administrator.
They determined three priorities for relief and reconstruction – which they have maintained in spite of criticism and pressure to broaden their response:
Rebuild schools so that the children – including those sponsored through ICCM – can continue their education, and their lives can begin to normalize.
Rebuild pastor’s houses that were destroyed by the earthquake so they can minister to others.
Free Methodist leadership in Haiti has worked with wisdom to help FMWM avoid an approach that creates unhealthy dependency. Rather than only reacting to immediate relief needs, the leadership is working towards implementing long-term sustainable systems that truly set up the people to continue caring for themselves.
The level of spiritual maturity and leadership among the Haitian Superintendents was impressive.
The way the Response Steering Committee is using the relief money is an example of stewardship and of excellent principles of missions for the 21st century.
There is an encouraging partnership with other mission organizations and aid agencies leveraging Free Methodist resources to go farther and accomplish more.
It is clear to see that forty years of missionary work are bearing fruit.
In the first video immediately after the earthquake, Bishop Roller asked the worldwide church for money and simultaneously made a commitment to walk long term alongside the Haitian Church to help rebuild Haiti. This commitment implies more than just relief, which only lasts short term. Our commitment seeks even farther-reaching results as we continue working on the long-term plan fleshed out by our Haitian leaders: better schools, better homes, better church buildings. This plan that we are privileged to support will empower the Haitian people to rebuild Haiti and walk more boldly into the future God has for them as a people.
We join with the whole world in grieving this tragic earthquake in Haiti. Our hearts and minds cannot imagine the level of devastation, and we fear the news of the next few days will compound our grief.