Good Morning! Just a quick note to ask you to pray for our young people and friends who are writing the difficult government exams to finish High School this week. They have studied hard -- now it's time to write. They have several difficult days ahead of them and I know they'd really appreciate your prayers. Here's the list... Rosnel, Joseph, Stevenson, Dieujuste, Obed, Wilkens, Junior, Marie Claire, Dada and Manno.
Continue to pray for Lyse who is not doing well. They took her to Port-au-Prince to have more tests done, but it doesn't look like anything can be done for her in Haiti. They suggested that maybe in the US she could be helped. I hope to find out more details on my trip down in a couple of weeks.
We appreciate your support in so many ways -- thank you for your prayers. Have a great week!
Wednesday, June 01, 2016
Mother's Day in Haiti is on the last Sunday of the month of May, and our kids just love putting on an appreciation party for all their "mom's". Linda always works very hard teaching the kids songs and helping them prepare food. a program and gifts to make them feel special. This year the kids made up some special T-shirts to give them...
The "Mom's" of the HOH
These ladies all work in different capacities to assure that our children and young people are well taken care of. From cooking, to laundry to child care they work have worked for many years to make the HOH a home for the kids. Some of these ladies have been working at the HOH for over 30 years! We are very thankful for the work these ladies do; they are an important part of our team.
On days like today we are reminded of just how crucial the work of the HOH is and how essential it is to have all of the staff involved. Early this morning an 11 year old boy named Simon was brought to us. Once you see his picture, I know you are going to say to yourselves, Jenny has made a big typing error in the actual age of this child. But Linda says he talks like an 11 year old and that is indeed the age given us by his family.
When we say family we mean his siblings. They have lost both of their parents and are left to fend for themselves while living as extras at an uncle's house who barely gets by with his own family. This picture is just a glimpse of what that has meant over the years. Long-term malnutrition, stunted growth and now an amputated arm.
A month ago, it was mango season in his area of Haiti and often during that season; mangoes are the only food children like Simon get to eat. Sometimes you can wait for them to fall out of the tree -- but not most times. Hunger drove Simon to decide to climb up to get a mango but he slipped and fell out of the tree. In the fall, he broke his arm; having no money to take him to the hospital, his family wrapped it in banana leaves left it to heal on it's own.
But it didn't. Infection set in, and in the end had to be amputated to save his life.
The trauma has been very difficult for Simon and he is having a hard time accepting this most recent crisis in his life. He begged the doctors to not cut off his arm. He cried and said he knew how difficult life was with two hands, how could he survive with one.
Enter the HOH. We've been here many times before. At the HOH Simon can learn how to accept, live with and even thrive in spit of his disabilities. Here he can find hope, love, learn to smile again and hear the Good News of hope in Jesus. Stay tuned for some dramatically different pictures in the weeks and months ahead.
We know we are able to bring hope to kids like Simon only with the help of partners like you who help out in so many different ways. Your financial and material donations together with your prayers on our behalf enable us to care for these children with whatever needs they might have.
A big thank you to everyone who answered our call for some clothes, we look forward to getting them down to the kids and being used. Please continue to pray for:
- Lyse, she is once again not doing well at all. This long journey is taking a toll on her little body and on the spirits of her mom and dad. Please keep them in your prayers.
- Our students will soon be writing their final exams and preparing for the government exams. They'd really appreciate your prayers for them.
- Linda always has many things happening all at the same time. She could use your prayers for wisdom and health for the everyday events that can bring her stress. Lately, with major rains it's been difficult for her to find charcoal to make the food, food prices continue to rise as the rains make the roads difficult to travel on, and the boat that often brings in food donations from Miami has been in dry dock! So she's had to be creative in keeping things going -- she does a great job and your prayers and encouragement would make a big difference.
- Finances as always are a big stress point for us. Pray for this provision for us.
- I am working on the camp lessons, projects and activities for this coming summer. I plan to head to Haiti in July and spend a couple of weeks at the HOH. I'd love your prayers for all these little details to come together.
Thursday, May 19, 2016
Thank you to everyone who held Linda and the HOH up in your prayers, we appreciate all the notes of encouragement as well. After another tough week with a virus goinging through the house and making them sick one after another, they have had a much easier go at things this past week and are able to take a breath.
Yesterday was Haiti's National Flag Day and was full of celebration. Our elementary school kids were all involved in parades and dances put on by their schools for the local community, here are some pictures...
Micah, Valandjina, Ivinsky & Dieula
They had a really fun time and now have the rest of the week off, so they are enjoying a nice break.
Linda asked me to pass on a need we have with you all and see if there are any of you out there who would be able to help us out in this way. Keeping almost 100 children, young people and young adults clothed every day is a big challenge. If we had to purchase clothing for all the kids, well, there's just no way we could do it with the kind of budget we work under.
The big need we have is for clothing. Our stock is dwindling down and we really could use an influx of clothing donations from our friends and supporters. They do not need to be new clothes, we are happy with used clothes and shoes as long as they are not too badly worn out. We need all sizes from baby to adult, and all types of clothes - everyday to dressy clothes as well as undergarments.
If this is something that interests you and you feel you could do a drive of some sort at your school, church, communities; or if you simply have extra clothes at your home that you wouldn't mind sharing with us, that would be really great.
We have set up a way that you could just pack them up in a cardboard box and ship them off to an address in Miami. Our friends there will receive the items and then pack them in a way that will enable them to arrive safely in Haiti. Anyone wanting to help us in this way, just drop us a note at email@example.com ; I'll send you a more detailed idea of what we could use and detailed shipping information. If collecting and sending clothing isn't your thing but you'd maybe like to help with the expense in getting them on the boat and over to Haiti then just let me know that too and I'll let you know how you could do that as well.
We know we couldn't do this ministry without the support of our partners. We appreciate the part you all play. Thank you so much!
Tuesday, April 26, 2016
Sometimes when you are having a really bad day, it is good to hear about someone else and suddenly yours doesn't seem so very bad. I've been in touch with Linda over the past couple of days as these events have been unfolding. The only reason I haven't written you about it all sooner was that it was constantly changing and now we feel like we can fill you in. So, for those of you who pray for us regularly -- please keep it up, we need that. We can't always fill you in as things are going on, but you can pretty much be sure there's always something going on in our lives -- we need your prayers!!
The start of her bad days was the arrival of a family at the HOH towards the end of last week. You can see the mom and her 4 children here in this picture:
The arrival of this family was not a problem, it was the circumstances that brought them to us. The little girl in the pink outfit has TB and needs extended treatment. The mom had recently been through a terrible physical beating by the man they had been living with and needed care, and they were all in general poor health after having spent the previous couple of nights just living on the streets. The entire family begs for a living except for the older boy who hangs out in the market and carries loads of merchandise for people making a pittance for his efforts.
In order to start the TB treatment for the little girl Linda let them all come to the HOH so the mom and child could get care. It seemed like a win-win situation for everyone -- at least from our perspective. We could care for all of them at once, they could catch their breath and have the chance to have a safe place to stay for a while. But, we have learned long ago, our perspective often isn't in line with those who come to our home. Everyday was a struggle for Linda to keep them at the HOH. They were making no money being there, and the pull of begging on the streets was just too great. After several days of arguing, Linda was finally able to convince the mom to leave the little girl who needed the treatment along with one of the older brothers to be with her. With that the mom and other children returned to the streets.
This arrangement didn't last long. Sunday afternoon the kids ran away from the HOH. Linda sent our older boys out with the vehicle to try and find them, but they were not successful. Monday, Linda sent them out again with no success. As you can imagine, everyone was upset and worried - but none more than Linda, she felt so bad. Finally, this morning when she sent the boys out again they found the children back out on the streets. They also located the mom and made sure they were all reunited again. The little girl will have to get her TB treatment on an out-patient basis which isn't ideal, but our only option at this point.
If this was the only thing to go wrong on Sunday/Monday for Linda that'd be bad enough, but in the midst of trying to locate the run away children. Our young lady Stephanie who is expecting her first child got a terrible allergic reaction to something and was rushed to the hospital. She has been really sick with elevated blood pressure since Sunday, and is just now this afternoon getting back to normal.
While this was going on, Jumalia came back with Lyse who was again pale and listless. Her blood count was down to 4 and she needed transfusions. Here she is:
It took most of the day yesterday to get the transfusions arranged and done. The doctors suspect she also has an infection so they are watching her closely.
On top of all of this, Oliana (our diabetic/siliac young lady) is once again sick and unable to get out of bed. This time she has come down with malaria and is receiving treatment which is a really tough thing in and of itself never mind having malaria with it!
And the glue holding everyone sane at this moment is Linda and boy could she use your prayers!!
Thank you for supporting us in this way and please continue to pray for our financial needs as we bring hope in it's many forms to the children, youth and sometimes even families who come to our home.
Saturday, April 02, 2016
Good Morning! We hope you are doing well and enjoyed a wonderful Easter season. At the HOH it was a great week, it is always one of our favorites during the year.
This year as usual we put on a week long conference with meetings each evening. Various pastors, speakers and singing groups from our local community churches came and participated in the services. Each night we had a packed yard as hundreds of children, young people and even adults from our community came to sing, and hear God's Word.
Here are some pictures:
The Praise and Worship team
Those who came
A young boy's singing group from a local church
We are so pleased for the privilege of sharing the Good News of Jesus with those in our local community and so thankful for all of our young people who worked so hard to put this on. Linda had nothing but praise for all of the HOH youth as they really helped her out to pull this off.
Now it is back to school and life as normal! But as life gets back to normal we need to once again ask you for prayer for little Lyse and her parents. She did fairly well these past couple of weeks but she is now starting to fail again. Her blood count has gotten dangerously low. She received one blood transfusion this past week and one again yesterday. They think she will need more today. This is such a difficult time for Jumalia, her husband Andly and the HOH family. Please keep them in your prayers during these difficult days.
We appreciate you all for your prayers, financial support and the many other ways you lift up this ministry. Blessings on each one of you!
Wednesday, March 09, 2016
We wanted to let you know that Lyse is doing so well, the doctors sent her home this week. It never ceases to amaze us when our kids defy the odds and the rejoicing never gets old. It's especially neat to be able to rejoice with one of our "kids" as our "grand-kid" defied the odds this time. And we wanted to invite you to share in our joy. Here is Jumalia and Lyse.
Mom and Daughter back at home
We don't know what the future holds for her, if this is just a temporary improvement or the path to full healing, but we are thankful for every day we have her with us. Thank you for holding them up in your prayers.
Thursday, March 03, 2016
We received some sad news this week that a good friend of the HOH passed away. Roger See has been part of HOH history longer than any of us who are there. His father was the one who originally built the HOH back when it started in 1956. Then, when we needed to add an addition to it early in the 2000's Roger came back to Haiti with another good friend Tom Sykes to build it for us. Now both of these special men are together in Heaven!
We just wanted to express our appreciation for all Roger has done for us over the years. He was always concerned for our kids and what was going on at the HOH. He continually sought after new supporters to help us out financially as well as worked to match up people who could help us out in other ways as well. He will be missed.
We would also like to convey our condolences to the See family and let you know that you are in our prayers at this difficult time. We'd ask you to please pray for his wife, children and grandchildren as well.