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The Story Has Not Ended

Sunday, February 17, 2024

So often, people ask us, "What's going on in Haiti? We haven't seen anything in the news. Does that mean things are getting better?" Sadly, that is not at all what it means.

The homicide rate more than doubled from 2022 to 2023 - and it was already elevated. Poverty reduction gains have been reversed due to both a deteriorating job market and a reduction in personal remittances (mostly from friends and family living abroad). Haiti's human development indicators (health and education) remain low and have recently been impacted even more by a resurgence of cholera and COVID-19. Flaming barricades are very common.

What does this all mean in a child's daily life? It means (statistically speaking) they are more likely...

  • to be hungry

  • to be malnourished

  • to be developmentally delayed or undeveloped

  • to be trafficked (for labor and/or sex)

  • to not go to school

  • to be sick

  • to be a victim of a violent crime

  • to die young

In other words, the situation in Haiti today doesn't just mean the children are suffering today - or even for the past three years. It means their entire futures are at risk. This is a truly horrifying situation for over 4 million children to be in the midst of. It is truly unimaginable. Nevertheless, whether or not we can imagine it, it is today's reality.

But this is NOT where the story ends. In the midst of the most dreadful of circumstances, GOD is present, and HE is active, and HIS eyes are on these children. HE has a plan. You and I have the opportunity to have a part in that plan, too. We can say "Yes!" when Jesus calls.

At MOHI, children come into a secure schoolyard to learn, to be safely supervised and covered in prayer, to make friends, to partake in health services, to eat nutritious meals, and to be mentored. There is definitely a strong sense of hope.

Teachers and students put a lot of time and energy into teaching and learning.

From newborns through the young adult years, nutritious food makes a difference each weekday.

The local medical professionals at MOHI impact lives daily: the young, the old, and everyone in between.

Vocational classes prepare students to be employable or to start their own businesses.


Nurse Marlouse, our dedicated Community Health Promoter in and around Luperón, has been receiving invaluable practical and educational support from medical professionals associated with Bless Back Worldwide and The Life Church. It's heartening to witness her expanding impact within the villages.

Next month, we are thrilled to launch the START NOW Early Childhood Development program in the Dominican Republic. Encouraged by the overwhelming response from our Hope Encounters last month, we are extending sponsorship opportunities not only for our students in Haiti but also to babies (0-5 years of age) in the Dominican Republic. Sponsorship, as demonstrated by Pastor Lex's own journey, profoundly impacts not only the sponsored child but also the broader community. Send me an email if you'd like to become a sponsor, too.

As many of you who have participated in Hope Encounters know, transportation is a crucial need for our mission. We are actively seeking to acquire a bus to facilitate our outreach efforts. If you or someone you know can assist with acquiring a bus in the DR or contribute towards this need, please reach out. This bus has a smooth-running diesel engine and is available for $23,000. (We're thinking we should get something a little newer, so we don't run into too many issues.)

Our commitment to the community of La Grúa remains strong. In addition to ongoing housing initiatives, we are embarking on a project to provide clean water to these families. The estimated cost is $37,000 for the filtration system, a small building in which to house it, and a water tank (cistern) in which to store clean water. Our friends at New England Chapel have informed us that matching funds are available specifically for this project. Donate by March 23rd to double the impact of your donation. Your support can make a significant difference in the lives of our friends in La Grúa.

We're also excited about the upcoming outreach collaboration with local churches in Luperón, including the Assembly of God Church (which Lex visited Sunday) and the Haitian Baptist Church, scheduled for this Fall. Stay tuned for more details!

We had the pleasure of reconnecting with the Life Team and the team from New England Chapel this weekend. I so loved our nightly debriefs in the Dominican Republic. Being with these teams again was like getting a bonus debrief! Our shared commitment to serving communities in need is stronger than ever, and we look forward to continued collaboration and impact.

For all of our friends near Central Massachusetts/Southern New Hampshire, please mark your calendar right now. We will be serving up an abundance of authentic Haitian fare for you and a friend (or two or three) on Saturday, March 2nd at 6pm right here in Gardner, Massachusetts. Come on out to hear from some of our recent Hope Encounter participants. Lex and I will join in, too, to share information/stories and answer questions. See pictures of the new babies in the START NOW program and browse through student cards to find someone special to sponsor. This is a great opportunity to introduce your friends and family to Mission of Hope International.

Thank you for your unwavering support of Mission of Hope International. Together, we are making a difference in the lives of countless individuals and communities.


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