Bohoc-Jacmel-St. Marc…all in ONE week!
I returned to Haiti on Thursday the 17th, and on Sunday the 20th, the 410 Bridge executive director Kurt Kandler, our country representative Tompy, and myself headed out on a four and a half hour drive to a community we are working in called Bohoc. Bohoc is about an hour past Hinche near a smaller community that is better known called Pignion. We were in Bohoc for less than 24 hours and were able to visit three neighboring communities and discuss the possibility of growing into them. The 410 Bridge has a strong philosophy of partnering with communities, not doing for them, but with them. I am so thankful for the opportunity to be with Kurt and the rest of our team and listen to him talk to communities about who we are and what we do. It was a very educational and eye opening experience. We made no promises to partner with any of the three communities we visited with. The next step is to see which community takes the initiative with their leadership to show that they are ready and willing to work with us and do for themselves.
After Bohoc we returned to Port au Prince for two nights, on Wednesday Pastor Scott Luck and his missions planning team from Stones Crossing Church in Greenwood, Indiana came to visit a few communities with us and inquire about the possibility of partnering with one of them. Together their team of four with our team of four mad the two hour drive out to Jacmel. There we met with a few community members from a small community called Oban. We are not currently working in Oban, this trip was mostly informational. After one night in Jacmel we headed back to Port au Prince to visit the deaf community and have some lunch before continuing on to St. Marc. We stopped at Epi Dor for lunch and with Ronalds help I was able to place every ones order in broken Creole, including the ice cream!
Above St. Marc high in the mountains there is a community called Chadirack that The 410 Bridge is partnering with. This is a community in which the primary income is from coffee export. The 410 Bridge has partnered with Land of 1000 Hills Coffee (http://www.drinkcoffeedogood.com/) in Chadirack, we were able to visit the community and meet with the community leaders in one of their local churches. When that meeting was finished, we continued higher up the mountain to visit a community we are currently not working in, but are considering the possibility of growing into. We were greeted by a hundred or so school children waiting to see who had ventured up the mountain to see them. After another meeting with the leaders of this community, we were prepared to make our way back down the windy mountain road. The view was breathtaking, both by scenic view and by sheer terror of the roadside that dropped off without notice or warning.
The trip ended safely back in Port au Prince, the team was scheduled to leave the following day. Ronald and Tompy had another adventure in store for me. Instead of dropping me off at my home, the boys thought it was time I start driving. They let me drive from the hotel all the way home! It was a great experience, I look forward to more practice and the chance to be driving on my own soon! It was a great week; I am so fortunate to have been given the opportunity to serve in Haiti and alongside so many amazing people. The team was a joy to be around; I am looking forward to the next few months and the people whose paths I will have the pleasure to cross!