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CHILD OF THE MONTH: HAITI

Yves Boyer writes, “I want you to know that a flood went through Haiti. It went away with all the things I had. By the grace of God I am still alive. I have nothing left. I lost my books, notebooks, pens, clothes, birth certificate. I lost my bicycle and a ball. I lost several family members. My grandmother’s house went away with the water. We are living in sadness.”

Almost one year has passed since torrential rains swept through several rural mountain regions of Haiti, killing thousands of people, destroying homes, gardens and livestock and turning the fertile plain of Mapou into a lake. Yves Boyer is a sponsored child in the Haiti Friendship Ministry and a student at the Marchasse school. He told us a harrowing tale of how he and two cousins escaped the raging waters that filled his home sometime after midnight on May 23, 2004. With his four-year old cousin on his back, he and several others, managed to run to one of the few cement buildings in the area and climb up to the roof where they waited out the storm. He returned to school with nothing but a long tee shirt to cover himself. He and his family had lost everything.

Thanks to the support of our contributors, the director of the school was able to provide Yves with a school uniform, a pair of shoes and new books so that he may continue his education. The feeding program at the school also meets a great need in this area, a need which increased dramatically after the flood destroyed so many gardens and fruit trees. Yves now lives in one of many huts fashioned out of stick frames and covered with tarp. The huts are clustered together on a hillside above the lake, housing the many survivors who have lost their homes. In Marchasse the road to recovery is a long and rocky one but with God’s grace and your support of schools and churches like this one in Haiti, children like Yves turn their eyes hopefully toward the future.

Joel Goldstein
Haiti Friendship Ministries