Thursday, April 30, 2009
Linda comforts Bossco who is upset that his older brother, Bonhomme, is in pain. Bonhomme fell off a horse and it looks like he broke his wrist. We sent him to town but it was after five so we could not find treatment for him. He'll stay overnight at LaMadonne and see a doctor in the morning. We really need a new clinic to care for our children in a timely fashion. It is unacceptable that Bonhomme has to spend the night in excruciating pain.
Yves' wheelchair, a gift from Dr. Michael Blood of Athens Group, has a front wheel problem. Here's Scoobie, Kevin Scobie, doing his best to repair it. The mud, gravel, rocks have taken their toll. Wheelchairs are not designed for off-road use. From left: Edy waiting on his seizure meds, Scoobie and Yves.
Invited the three ladies from the Guest House for lunch today. Dino prepared a chicken, cheese and mashed potato casserole which was well received. Didn't think to take the photo when the table was set but you get the idea.
These are our banana trees that we had to replant after the flooding last fall. In a couple of more months we'll be picking bunches of plantains from them to augment our children's diet. The hope is that the weather stays friendly.
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Here I am signing the register for approved non-profit status in the Office of Planification in Port-au-Prince last Thursday. Berthony looks on and will be signing the book, too. Our official name is now PWOJE ESPWA SUD. The gentleman on the left is the Director of Planification and he gave a short speech on the role and responsibilities of non-profits and stressed the need for collaboration and communication between ourselves and the government.
Sunday, April 26, 2009
A seminar on management was offered to us by the kind folks above. From top left to bottom right: Justin, Kelly, Mike, Gillian and Alycia. The three days covered such things as principles, protocols, procedures in management, accounting and governance. Justin and Gillian will be returning to assist in the implementation. We learned a lot and the staff here is appreciative that we had this opportunity.
Saturday, April 25, 2009
Wilson Noel (16), Jimmy Guery (15) and Gardy Georges (16) dropped by for a visit this morning. They asked to see the inside of my home so I gave them a tour. Two really liked my office because of the computer and the other, Jimmy, liked my bedroom because it is spacious. He said he can't imagine being able to sleep in such a space all by himself. None liked my composting toilet. Oh, well.
Wilson wants to be an accountant; Jimmy wants to be a doctor to help the sick; and Gardy plans on becoming a talented cabinet-maker. Stick around and we'll see what develops.
Friday, April 24, 2009
Denise (MaTante) celebrated her 70th birthday today. The kids and staff got together and made today a truly special occasion for the woman who has been the matriarch of Pwoje Espwa these past 11 years. May God continue to bless her with patience, understanding, wisdom and health. We thank him everyday for her.
We celebrated MaTante's 70th birthday this afternoon. You can see from the photos that we had a good time as the kids put on a show for her and then a wonderful meal was prepared for all to enjoy. We have been graced by MaTante's presence for eleven years and we look forward to many more.
Here's the latest photo of the modified African toilet. It will be all finished and ready for paint in a week's time. Thanks to Rotary International for funding this project. This particular unit is destined for use by the secondary school students and teachers.
Berthony and I went to PaP yesterday and signed the old, thick, official register for Non-Profit Humanitarian Organizations at the Ministry of Planification's Annex. We were given the official certificate which states that Pwoje Espwa Sud is a legally recognized non-profit and will benefit from all exemptions and so on and so on... Will post a photo as soon as I get one from the two folks who were present with cameras. Thanks to Dominique Bazin for helping us in the final stretch. This has been years in the making so we are thrilled!
A huge THANK YOU to the children of Our Lady of Angels School in Worcester, MA. They raised the money to purchase almost 400 aluminum bowls and soup spoons for our kids. This is a greatly appreciated gift. Thank you very much, boys and girls of OLA, for your generosity. May God bless you!
Sunday, April 19, 2009
National elections are taking place today. There are several senate seats that need to be filled (one for our area). Fanmi Lavalas (ex-President Jean Bertrand Aristide's political party) will not be in the race due to not being able to satisfy all eligibility requirements. Seems he's the only one who can sign off on Lavalas candidates and he has not done so. As a result of this, there have been rumors of manifestations that will disrupt the election process. To be on the safe side, the Haitian government closed schools on Friday before the election and on Monday right afterwards. It has also asked that people stay home except to vote. Ominous? Yes! So far things have been quiet. Let's hope that they stay that way.
Saturday, April 18, 2009
Yesterday was Will's 23rd birthday. Apart from a scrumptious turkey meal that Dee fixed up for us, we celebrated by making war with the kids. Will and his friend spent hours preparing over 900 water-filled balloons. Two coolers filled with these weapons were placed strategically in the yard for the kids to use and we had the advantage of the high ground. Needless to say, we had a riotous good time. I was only hit once directly but ended up being soaked anyway.
Our second group of public health guys graduated this week. We had a small party for them in the Guest House and each received a certificate. Will Perez has done a fantastic job of training these teens and setting up a workable public health program. Check out his blog for more details. In the photos above: Will cutting the cake-- Fritzer receiving recognition as Public Health Trainer-- all of us at table.
Was driving to my house this morning and saw a ton of white smoke coming from the banana plantation. Checked it out and saw that a small wildfire was starting to pose a serious threat to our banana trees. Called out for help which arrived in time to put out the fire. We lost about 25 trees. It has been dry lately and the vertiver roots we use as mulch make perfect kindling.
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Monday, April 13, 2009
Saturday, April 11, 2009
We had activities all morning for the children-- mostly games and sports. The two photos here (top-Bebe, bottom-Ilner) show the little guys getting blindfolded and then trying to kick the ball at the crowd's encouraging calls. All the kids win something as they are all winners.
Friday, April 10, 2009
Thursday, April 9, 2009
Most of you know that we have a northern neighborhood of fifteen homes. About thirty of our older boys will be moving out there this week to allow more room for the little guys. Thanks to the Cracchiolo Family Foundation we will soon have electricity for these fifteen homes. Here's a photo of some of the poles that are ready for the high-tension wires. Our neighbors in that area will have the opportunity to "plug in" as well making their lives brighter. A huge, heartfelt thank you to the Cracchiolos for their generosity.