Hey friends, I have a heavy heart for the folks in Haiti right now. I have never been to Haiti, but I have several friends who are extremely committed to Haiti as part of our mission work at Church. All the local Catholic churches have sister parishes they support in Haiti and each church runs it's own mission to Haiti at least once every year. Therefore I have alot of friends who are deeply committed and affected by this nation.
In addition, I have an acquaintance, and I use that term very liberally because in fact, I've only met him twice, but we have two close mutual friends, who is in Haiti right now and was there during the earthquake. His parents run the Hands and Feet Children's Village (which is an orphanage.) Mark Stuart sent this message today and I thought the words were really worth sharing, it's unimaginable.
"... we are very scared. The buildings [in the village] held up great, but there are several houses right around us that have collapsed. Many houses and buildings in Jacmel have collapsed, including the hospital. I know most of the news there is coming from Port au Prince, but there is substantial loss of life here on the south coast. We need prayer for wisdom and strength. It's very chaotic here.
Last night was crazy.... slept on the dirt in the center of the village... away from buildings. Tonight we may venture back indoors, but that is yet to be decided. We only go in and out to get necessities.
The Haitian people are numb, and sadly, very used to death. However, this has created what seems to be a hypnotic state. I've never been in a situation where you feel SO helpless, fearful, and small. The tremors are coming again as I type. Whoa!!!"
I can't even imagine! There isn't even a hospital to turn to if they need it. Plus, it's believed that even more children will be brought into the orphanage due to the death toll.
You can check out the Hands and Feet Project online. You can donate directly to Hands and Feet HERE! HAF and Compassion have both asked that you make any monetary donations through reputable organizations as money sent directly to Haiti will not necessarily trickle down to the folks who need it.
TOMS is running a relief promo right now where in addition to giving a pair of TOMS for every pair that is purchased, they will give $5 to Partners In Health. If you are not familiar with Paul Farmer, you must go get the book Mountains Beyond Mountains. It will rock your world. But in the meantime, take my word for it, get a great pair of trendy shoes AND give money to this fabulous organization in the process. Partners In Health is a totally reputable group doing amazing work all over the world, but they are centered in Haiti.
Additionally, Compassion International is always doing a good work and they are centered on helping the orphans too! I can't begin to comprehend the need that will be generated from this catastrophe. It can't be overstated how slammed the orphanages will be. I know that the orphanage in Grand Goave crumbled in the middle of the night. Many others are bound to be damaged in addition to needing to serve more children in the coming days and months. I have attached a button at the top of my blog where you can give directly to Compassion for use in Haiti. Also, you can click here for more options.