As we arrived in Haiti yesterday, our hearts were full and bodies exhausted! After spending some time bonding at the pool and getting to know each other better with group conversations at our beautiful guesthouse house, we happily were in bed by 9pm.
Waking up in Haiti with the sweet smell of coffee and sticky heat is the best introduction to Haiti. Breakfast was prepared with love by our amazing Haitian staff, Ulta and Phoneis. Shortly after eating a wide spread of food, including eggs, French toast, and passionfruit juice, we were on our way to Peace Cycle, a local organization that exists to promote job creation through the creation of bags and other goods using recycled water bags. Every day 8 million water bags are used by Haitians and often make their way to the street instead of the trash. In response to an attempt to reduce trash and waste, Peace Cycle reuses the water bags and makes beauty out of what was once trash. See the image below to see what Peace Cycle creates!
We began the morning with Peace Cycle by introducing ourselves to the Haitian staff (19 total employees!) while also learning more about them, including their names, hobbies, family, and jobs. As they say, you learn best by doing and we put that act to practice by joining in with the Haitian staff and doing their jobs for part of the morning! We were able to cut, wash, iron, and even sew parts of these bags together. The ladies all loved the experience and have such an appreciation for what the Haitian staff do!
Following our worktime, Rose, the founder of Peace Cycle, invited us to eat Pumpkin soup and drink fresh fruit for lunch. Pumpkin soup is a celebratory soup that Haitian eat on their independence day, January 1st. Made of pumpkins, chicken, noodles, carrots, potatoes, and yams, this soup lived up to its hype! Our favorite part of lunchtime was the opportunity to converse with the Haitian staff and learn about their families and lives.
After lunch, we explored the streets of Haiti in small groups! Our guests invited us to their homes and treated us to local snacks from street vendors. Many of us tried a local fruit called kinnip (pictured below!), sugar cane, popcorn and more. We loved the snacks but loved the people more. We were blessed by these individuals so much more than we were able to bless them. Though we were in four groups and spent the afternoon apart, we were very excited to swap stories and experience. Jesus is at work in the hearts of the Haitians and we are blessed to have been part of their lives for the day!!
The day ended at the pool because has been a heat-filled start to the week. Our night ended in “word of the day” and snacks of cold chocolate. What a blessing it is to be in Haiti with an amazing group of ladies.
The Bergs, Carlsons, Glinkskis, Larsons, Roders, Maci and Jaci