September 27, 2012
My first trip to Jacmel, Haiti was June 2012. This organiziation is making a difference in the lives of not only the children, but the people in Jacmel as a whole. While there I helped in the Feeding program, working with the most incredible kitchen ladies who so willingly gave their entire day to providing a meal to over 400 children. It was hard, hot work in a very small kitchen with primative tools and they did it with a smile on their faces. I also helped finish painting a house that had been built by a previous team. Getting to meet the family that would move into that house was incredible. My team and I also participated in what we called the 'One More Brick' project, where we carried concrete blocks down a very long, steep hill to a work site where a house was being built. By carrying these bricks down, we saved a great deal of money on the cost of this house. But the greatest thing I did was just love these people. They are so open in how they worship and show their love and gratitude to Jesus for all that He has provided to them- to be in their presence while they are worshiping, is to be in the presence of God. These people have very few material possessions, but the one thing they have is joy. Restore Haiti is providing much needed food, housing, medical care, schooling , clothing and the love of Jesus. This organization is run like a well oiled ship: the trip was well planned, all travel arrangements were taken care of, all housing and meals were taken care of and the day to day activites were well planned. This is a life changing experience and if you are considering an organization to sponsor, I can't think of a better one. I am definitely going back next summer.
Would you volunteer for this group again?
For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?
Did the organization use your time wisely?
Would you recommend this group to a friend?
When was your last experience with this nonprofit?
What one change could this group make that would improve your volunteer experience?
For first timers, be a little more up front about the accomodations- they weren't exactly what I had been told. :)
Did your volunteer experience have an effect on you? (teaching you a new skill, or introducing new friends, etc.)
I learned how to carry a brick on my head (just like the Haitian women carry everything on their heads). I met many new Haitianfriends that I still keep up with.
How did this volunteer experience make you feel?
It humbled me in a mighty way. It made me realize that gadgets and 'stuff' are not important. What is important are relationships and I came back a changed person and I have implemented many new things in my life since the trip.