2016 was a year to remember. Whew. It was challenging and ended up looking quite differently than we thought it would. With me getting sick over and over again, we decided to base ourselves out of the USA for the year, as it was something we were already contemplating anyway. It’s been….an adjustment. I have felt badly quite a bit (but the end is in sight, thank God!). Ryan has been going back and forth to Haiti quite a bit and we have both been able to work on things that have fallen through the cracks as we have lived in Haiti. We have been able to plan all of 2017 (which is a huge goal for us), as well as set some time aside for those pesky administrative tasks that we avoid so often.
Honestly, it’s been really helpful for us personally to be back in the USA for this season, as well. Doing ministry this long with few debriefing sessions and marriage counseling has not been too ideal for us. This season has allowed us to focus on our mental and physical (and spiritual) healths so we may continue to serve and work in Haiti.
That being said, there have been so many really amazing things that have happened in 2016. Showing us, once again, that there are things God has put in place that not even we can destroy ;) haha. We are giving thanks for the people who are working within our Konbit network. We are so proud of our water guys, who have worked tirelessly to go to the hardest to reach places and serve their communities well. This year, we saw thousands of households gain access to clean drinking water! A huge thank you to Andy Taylor Homes who donated 1,000 filters, Justice Water who donated a few hundred filters, Jenessa Peters and Jesselyn Prophet, who have worked to raise money for these projects and to our yearly supporters so we may pay these guys to continue their work! Thank you, thank you!
In addition to water, we have seen so many kids and young adults receive healing, forgiveness and Jesus this year. We serve over 100 kids each week with a kids’ program within their cultural context and host several special events throughout the year. Clelie, our family director, does an amazing job putting these things together. We are so thankful for her and our team there. We have programs throughout the week that gather people together for lots of fun!
We are watching our businesses grow, and it has been cool to see. We have a part-time moringa operation happening on our property and our staff have been doing an amazing job with that. We continue to partner with Gran, who is an amazing coffee roaster. Her coffee is delicious and we have enjoyed selling it (and drinking it). Our Fanm Konbit operation is going well, too. We are expanding on that and are excited to do more with that.
All in all, our trainings and seminars have been really well received. We have learned a lot about how to educate and train people while still hopefully keeping the integrity of the culture itself. We are still learning about this balance and are really hoping to implement more training that is already in Haiti for this upcoming year.
We are so thankful for the way God is moving in Haiti. We are so pleased to see whole lives being transformed and changed- its been a blast to be a part of! We still need a few more monthly donors for our many ongoing programs, as well as any one-time donations to keep our programs and staff running. If you are considering a place to get involved, I would ask that you consider Konbit Haiti! There is also still time to get that year end donation in, as well! ;)
Thanks, as always, for being such a supportive group of people who are partnering with us to see Haiti transformed!
This upcoming year, we hope to have more medical seminars and we hope to continue partnering with our contacts in the mountains. We hope to serve more children with our family programs. We hope to expand our job programs and training. We are also an approved non-profit in Haiti, so we are hoping to finally move on getting a permanent location in Haiti! We have a lot planned and we are so excited for what is to come. Thank you for being a part of this with us!