Haiti 2013 - Day 2
Day 2: Now I sit reflecting on the day and am overwhelmed by it all. After lunch we loaded up the jeep with all the supplies. 75 backpacks each filled with a notebook, pencils, pens and a pencil sharpener. And loads of uniforms. We pulled into Rivage which is truly the slum of Hinche. The homes back to the river which floods in the rainy season with infected water making everyone sick. There is trash and filth everywhere. Naked unattended children smaller than my girls. It is hard to describe.
We pulled up in the jeep and there were over 100 kids sitting in front of the school. Craig, Laura, Katie and I rolled the luggage over the rocky dirt road to the school hut as the kids cheered. The kids sang songs and clapped. We handed out tootsie pops to all the children and it finally got quiet. We sorted all the clothes into sizes and polled up the backpacks. After more speeches and songs, including kids chanting Camelback Desert School, we began to hand out the goods. Children came in two to three at a time selected by the community leaders and for over an hour we sized up children with clothes and gave them backpacks. As we began to run out the crowd outside got larger and louder. We began to joke that we might need the UN to get us out. But the community leaders kept everyone under control and we felt safe the whole time. We took lots of pictures and video to share. The community needs so much support. They would like to build a real building.....the current structure is literally a hut with dirt floors and a leaky roof that does not fit all the kids. They would like extra support for many of the children who are orphaned that the community cares for and they would like to feed the children as many are starving. The children with bare feet are hard to see. It would be so easy to get them shoes and change their lives.
Steve came back in the jeep to pick us up and we loaded the now empty suitcases back up. We then went to Gamoson's uncle's house to look at arts and crafts. They gave us gifts, a pot holder, a book mark, a small wood jar. I then began to barter for two hand embroider dresses for the girls. They said they are $10 a piece. I said how bout 2 for $15. They talked for a long time and said no. 2 for $14. I laughed and said deal. We got back to the midwives for Haiti house and had our Kreole lesson (Laura, Katie and I). Steve, Craig and Carrie went for a run.
Then we printed and stapled exams for the students for tomorrow and organized supplies for in coming students.Then it was time for dinner. We all sat at the large communal table and shared great conversation and laughs. Another cold beer and cold shower finished up the day.