Today was a day of mixed emotions. We had the opportunity to visit Haiti Design Coop. This was a modern facility that employs both local men and women to design and craft beautiful artisan work such as leather purses, wallets, necklaces, earrings, etc. We toured their facility and got to do a little crafting of our own. We each made either a beaded or leather bracelet. We even had a little time for some retail therapy! The integrity of the employees was inspiring, and the team expectations amazed us. They start each day out in prayer. This is a much different concept than many of us experience back in the states.
In the afternoon, our team split up into two groups. Half went to the Home of the Sick and Dying Babies and the other to an orphanage.
The Home of the Sick and Dying Babies was overwhelming. We walked into two rooms full of tiny cribs with beautiful babies in them. Our hearts were heavy as we tried our best to love on each of them. We didn’t have enough arms to hold them all at once. A lot of questions would come into our heads while holding these little ones from what are they sick with to does anyone else love them and will their family return to bring them home. Their eyes were huge but often expressionless. Their malnourished bodies often were much less developed than one would ever expect. Even though our hearts broke for them we were able to hang on to the hope that they are and always will be children of God. He loves each and every one of them and has a special plan for them. Today we got to experience just a piece of that plan with those beautiful children and our hearts will be forever changed.
The team that went to the orphanage was able to also love on some amazing kids, but in a much different way. We brought a supply of activities to entertain the kids. Jump ropes, coloring books/crayons, nail polish, bubbles, and soccer balls/beach balls were some of the kids’ favorites. One surprise to me was that many of the kids were able to speak and even write in English! One of the little girls who took to me (Meghan) drew a portrait of me on a dry erase board. It was so precious watching her look up at me to draw my eyes, then ask me to take my hair out of my pony so that she could see how long it was, carefully transferring what she saw onto the board. Our time together was short, but memories were made by all.