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Saturday, June 30, 2012

Destination Haiti




I inspected my small suitcase one more time. I had packed the most essential items for this particular trip. Unlike most of my recent vacation trips to the Caribbean, in this case I didn’t need to pack my hairdryer, or jewelry or an evening dress. That was the lightest traveling bag I’ve ever packed, considering I was going overseas. What made this trip so different from my prior ones? It was a mission trip. The Schweitzer United Methodist Church kindly let me join this project. We were a team of ten, our destination: Les Cayes, Haiti. 


                               Photo source: http://haiti.schweitzerumc.org/


We arrived at Port Au Prince on June 29. There was a group of men playing music at the airport entrance, and selling their CDs. I thought they were playing reggae, but I learned later it was actually “Kompa” which it sounds like a mix between reggae and rap. The music made me feel welcomed. 


The airport was small, and the humidity and heat were high, but it didn’t bother us. We were simply excited to know we have finally arrived to Haiti. Our energy level was at its peak.


The immigration process was not as difficult as we expected. It helped that our coordinator Lori was quite familiar with the process, as she has completed this trip multiple times. Everything went fast and without a hassle. The immigration officers seem to have some respect for visitors on humanitarian missions. They seem to appreciate all the baggages we carried containing hundreds of clothing and hygiene supplies. 


We dodged several “helpers” offering to carry our bags, as we had already made arrangements. A shuttle was waiting for us. It was comforting to feel the air conditioning again. It was much needed, as our real journey was just about to start.




Haiti, officially the Republic of Haiti, is a Caribbean country. It occupies the western, smaller portion of the island of Hispaniola, in the Greater Antillean archipelago, which it shares with the Dominican Republic.

17 comments:

welcome to my world of poetry said...

Hope you have a great time , My son and wife spent their honeymoon at the Dominican Republic.
Lovely to hear from you.

Yvonne.

Dr. Kathy McCoy said...

I'm fascinated to hear about your trip to Haiti, Doris! And can hardly wait to hear about your mission experience. The need is so great there.

KarenG said...

I went on vacation recently to Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic. Learned a lot about the island and the history of both countries. I'm sure you will do some good!

KathiP said...

God Bless you, keep you safe and may you accomplish all of your mission goals.

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

Good for you. I hope your experience there is phenomenal.

Mariette VandenMunckhof-Vedder said...

Dearest Doris,

Great that you still managed to post this! You sure will have an interesting and intense time over at Haiti.
Enjoy it and stay well.
Love to you,
Mariette

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Doris - what a wonderful trip you'll be having to help others - there still seems so much to be done in that very impoverished country - I'm sure you will give them some much needed comfort for their continued suffering ...

With many thoughts to a heart-giving time ... Hilary

Munir said...

This is so much like you - - I mean going to Haiti to help out. I remember talking to a young sales lady at Best Buy who had lost someone in Haiti. If I see her again I will tell her how awesome you are. You have prayers with you.

Munir said...

This is so much like you - - I mean going to Haiti to help out. I remember talking to a young sales lady at Best Buy who had lost someone in Haiti. If I see her again I will tell her how awesome you are. You have prayers with you.

Amrita said...

Its wonderful to be on a missions team. May God bless your work there.

LE CHEMIN DES GRANDS JARDINS said...

Félicitation pour tout ce travail social et pour l'humanisme dont vous faites preuve dans cette équipe formidable.
Bien amicalement,

Roger

Cynthia Stevenson said...

This is wonderful! I can't wait to read the next entry of your mission. Many blessings!

Donna Hole said...

I would be envious - except it sounds like a working trip. Still, it would be nice to get away to somewhere exotic :)

.....dhole

Steve E said...

This is a WONDERFUL opportunity for you Doris, I am happy about it--and don't even know you--grin!

Read now, that this is also a wonderful opportunity for each Peep with which you come into contact, your fellow travelers...AND the Peeps who need and want empathy, needing some loving presence in their lives.

Keep up your work, Doris, not faltering...EVER! OK?
Grinning and joyful old man Steve

Mary Aalgaard, Play off the Page said...

What an incredible journey. I hope you were able to do and see many good things.

Play off the Page

Unknown said...

This may be a long shot, but I found your blog while searching for possible practicum locations in Haiti. I am currently a social work student at Ball State in Muncie, Indiana. If you have any agency connections or contacts in Haiti I would greatly appreciate the help! My email is arstanley@bsu.edu and again, thank you in advance for any help you can provide!

Thank you, Allie Stanley

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