February 28, 2013 — Lebrun Village, Haiti.
It is hard to put into words our last day in Haiti.
The day began with a celebration with all of the school children from the five different schools that are partnering with HavServe. They walked the long road to school, two by two, holding… hands, each wearing their character of education t-shirt. Respect-yellow, Honesty-blue, Compassion-red, Responsibility-green, Equality-orange, Citizenship-purple … these are the core values that team HavServe is teaching to more than 800+ children in the village of Lebrun. The teachers and their students were grateful to the HavServe volunteers and especially Carline and Kristin. Carline is the Co-Founder of HavServe who three years ago began the partnership with the community of Lebrun. Kristin is a volunteer from Canada who has spent the last 6 months coordinating the teacher training program fot the 52+ teachers. HavServe’s primary goal is to provide access to a quality education and Kristin has done an extraordinary job doing just that! The children sang songs, and performed skits and recitations. It was really something to see!Thanks to the Ontario Gleaners, the HavServe volunteers served a small cup of soup and a slice of bread to nearly 800 students. It felt good to be part of something so positive and powerful, and I can tell you there were no leftovers!The day ended with yet another celebration, this time honoring the teachers who were graduating from the teacher training program. They have put in a great deal of time and efforts over the last 6 months so Carline, Kristin and the rest of the volunteers wanted to show them our appreciation. The teachers and soccer coaches were each presented with a framed certificate of accomplishment. Their proud faces told the story better than I can!
The celebration ended with a generous meal of rice and beans with gravy, chicken and goat meat. The goat was even donated by one of the teachers. The HavServe volunteers served each of the teachers each and their families. Most of the teachers only ate a small amount on their plates so they could save some for later. As I have observed so many times this week, food is scarce and they don’t know when it is coming again.So now we pack up and get ready to leave the Lebrun village. As I leave, I look back on the week with fond memories and a sense of hope. It is pitch black outside but the sky is lit up with bright shining stars!