Today marks 14 days since the winds and rains of Hurricane Matthew mercilessly struck the SW region of Haiti. If you were to use your right hand and make a backward “C,” you will have shaped the country of Haiti. Then look at the end of your thumb where your nail is. That’s the area in Haiti greatly affected by Matthew, a population of more than 2 million people. Two million people displaced. In the remote villages some are finding shelter in caves or under huge rocks. Family members are still looking for loved ones. And all across that region, everyday loved ones are burying their loved ones. The Ministry of Education ruled today that all schools in this region must reopen. This is a hard ruling when so many schools are being used as shelters for families. It is hard for Jeremie, the capital of the Grand-Anse department/state, to even consider this. And yet, we understand that to return to some sense of normalcy, we have to get the children back to school. This is where the reconstruction phase is of importance.
So by faith, ESMI began cleaning up the Lundi Children’s Village with the hope of 5 having homes prepared soon for the children to move in. Getting ESMI schools rebuilt on the LCV campus, the school in downtown Jeremie and that of the University of Jeremie are also high priorities Here are a few aerial shots of the property:
However, as a ministry we also need to help the community. Many who have sought refuge at the school downtown and in the School of Joy building on the HQ campus cannot be forced out so that classes can begin. They too have to be helped. Pray for God’s provision for the rebuilding of these schools and the families who will need to leave these sites and find new housing.
Update on Medical/Ministry Team from Dominican Republic:
Thank you all for praying. The team of four: two Haitian pastors, a medical doctor and John Martinez made it to Les Cayes last Friday and then onto Jeremie on Saturday. On Sunday, they worked after church seeing the children and their care-givers from (LCV). Praise the Lord for the ministry of this team in carrying needed medicine across the border. Team returned safely to their home in the DR last night.
Here is a quick summary of how your generous donations were used:
-160,000 food kits prepared and distributed within 10 days in Jeremie/Grand-Anse + $57K worth of food in the South
-Pastoral League Leadership in Jeremie and in Les Cayes…………………….$20K worth of food + 3 motorcycles + Monetary gift to serve their community of 352,000 people
-10 motor bikes bought in total to travel where vehicles can’t go
-4,200 families given monetary assistance. Why give monetary assistance if you gave food? A quick answer is to think back on Update #6, with the story of the man and his son who walked for 90 minutes to look for a match. If we gave him the food only, he’s still in search of the match? So a stipend is given to families that in their most dire need, they can have some dignity in making decisions with the stipend that is given to them. This can be used to buy charcoal to cook their food, a bit of spices, some set aside for to purchase covering of any kind, etc.
Today, Louis has chartered a plane to drop food in the village of Plaisance du Sud. Word was sent to him of their need. With no road to get there, the people have made smoke signal awaiting the drop off. Pray that all will go well.
In order not to overwhelm you, with all that’s ahead, we end with a chorus that the El Shaddai Church @ Versailles sang this past Sunday. It is God’s grace that will sustain us and enable us in the days ahead.
Here’s the translation:
“If today I am alive, it’s by Your grace.
Without Your grace, I am nothing.
I will lift up my hands to worship You;
I will go on my knees at Your feet
and lay prostrate before You.
Let my voice reach Your throne;
Come, establish Your Kingdom.
Let my voice reach Your throne;
Come, establish Your Kingdom.”
As I, Dony, walk and talk with the people in the community, Psalm 121 has been very meaningful: “I lift up my eyes the hills. From where does my help come from? My help comes for the LORD, who made heaven and earth.” Thank you for allowing ESMI to serve the people of Haiti on your behalf.
ESMI is recognized by the IRS as 501c3 not-for-profit organization. All gifts are tax-deductible. You can donate online DONATE NOW at: https://www.esmihome.org/donate/sponsor-a-project/disaster-relief/ ; or send a check to: El Shaddai Ministries International, Inc. c/o The Keyes Company, 2121 SW 3rd Avenue, Suite 601, Miami, FL 33129, Memo: Hurricane Relief.