I am so proud to have had the opportunity to work with this organization. After the devestation that hurricane Matthew wreaked on parts of Haiti I was looking for a local organization to connect with to send aid. I was blessed to find Pennies for Haiti. I worked directly with them to send aid and the organization has been absolutely wonderful to work with. I look forward to continuing my volunteer efforts with this amazing organization!
I was privileged in July 2016 to go on a mission trip with Pennies for Haiti for 10 days in Port-au-Prince. We worked at a local orphanage with kids of all ages, who needed not just love and hugs but to know that someone cared about them. The very first day when I walked in there they wanted to be touched and held and wanted to know my name. It was so overwhelming and yet so easy to interact with them. My blonde hair was something different for them and one day, I let two of the girls braid my hair. This was such a show of how they felt about me and it really touched my heart. When it was time to leave every day, the kids always wanted to know if we were coming back tomorrow. After the 10 days when we had to tell them we wouldn't be back tomorrow, that was a hard, emotional day for me. I have a strong desire to give these kids hope for a future and to see them get an education, learn skills and have value, self esteem and self worth to make a difference with their lives. A piece of my heart was left in Haiti.
I was humbly honored to have participated in a mission trip to Port Au Prince in August 2015. When I heard about the trip I felt compelled to attend, although with a bit of trepidation, not quite knowing what I could offer to so many in such need. When we first arrived at the orphanage, a young girl of approximately ten years of age hugged me and would not let go. At that precise moment I knew the only thing I needed to do was offer God's love to these sweet children. Although their need was great for food, clothing and health issues, the most urgent need was love. You could see it in their eyes, whether they looked at you close up or from afar. Whilst photographing and observing them for four days, one could watch the change in their demeanor from day to day.
The first day, many were apprehensive and sad. Some would observe us from behind a gate or behind a partially closed door, watching as we interacted with the bolder children, wondering why we were there and how long we would stay. By the second day, a large group welcomed us at the gate and you could see the excitement in their eyes and voices, even hear a bit of laughter. As we gave them love and attention, it came back to us ten fold. Such a simple part of life seemingly so hard for them to attain.
By the third and fourth day, ALL seemed to participate, even the older, more reserved children. It broke our hearts to have to leave but we all felt God's presence in our time there and have pledged to return and forever hold them in our hearts and prayers.
To watch a child whose eyes are dark, tearful and sad blossom into eyes filled with love, joy and wonder is truly miraculous and makes one question why we as God's children do not do more to help these innocents. I will never forget the children's eyes, how they changed from seeing darkness to seeing God's love.
I spent a week working with Pennies for Haiti in Port-Au-Prince during the summer of 2015. For four days we traveled to a local orphanage and gave art, drama, music and bible lessons to the kids. You can tell that they usually don't receive much attention or love... or food. They deserve so much more. If the owners of home will allow it the next few steps will be bettering their quality of life. Nutrition and hygiene are two major issues.
Overall, I was humbled by the dedication and passion of the members of Pennies for Haiti. They work tirelessly to bring education and a better future to all the abandoned and orphaned children in Haiti. I felt welcomed right away and I intend to go back as soon as possible. Being with the children is always the most rewarding part and the familial atmosphere of the group of volunteers themselves is a blessing. I hope many more people become a part of this wonderful venture.
After my trip there I was asked to become a member of the board. I accepted and now I can't wait to see what the future brings for Pennies For Haiti and the children of Haiti.
August of 2015, I had the privileged to spend a week in Haiti, volunteering at an Orphanage in Port-Au-Prince. In the beginning I was hesitant about going to Haiti, mainly because I was concerned for our safety. However, after we arrived all of those fears went away and I was just taking in everything that was around us. The Executive Director stayed with us in the guesthouse the entire time we were there and she brought a sense of comfort. We spent time at a local orphanage and provided a VBS for the children. We taught them songs, artwork, and about God and his love for all of us. There were children that ranged from all ages and no matter what their age was, they wanted to know everything about us. What we were wearing, the pictures on our phones, they wanted to take pictures using our phone. Our very first day at the orphanage, my heart was broken due to the way these children live and all I wanted to do was to do whatever I could to help these children. I showed them what love looks like, by being present to them and helping them see that there is hope in their lives. Our last day there, was an emotional one because we could see that these kids had life again in their eyes, could hear laughter all around, and hugs being shared all over the place. The children did not want us to leave, and I don't blame them, if I was in their shoes. This organization truly brings hope the children of Haiti in so many ways. Not just through missionaries coming to spend time with the children, but through the different programs they have to offer. I pray for Pennies for Haiti daily that this organization will continue to strive and be the hands and feet of Jesus Christ.