We ARE planning to go to Haiti this year but the timing of the last week in Feb may very well change. The political situation in Haiti has resulted in violence and protesting in the streets. In a nutshell, the President says his 5-year term is not over until 2022 but the opposition says his term is over now, both have a point as this article explains. It is hard to tell when the situation will settle down.
So, we are going to watch the situation weekly and go when we can, hopefully by sometime in March at the latest. We are taking a small group that can be flexible with travel plans. If you are feeling you should go, please let me know, otherwise pray for us!
We are collecting items now and want to have the bags packed and ready to go by Feb 20th so we need all donations by Feb 19th. We are collecting the following:
- Sheets – all sizes and types (except pillowcases) in good condition
- Beanie Baby size stuffed animals
- Matchbox cars
- Kids multivitamins with iron
- Large suitcases
- Cash donations – more on this below
Haiti went to a new level of crazy this year when all the banks banded together and decided to make their own exchange rate. It was 140 Gouds to 1 US dollar and they changed it to 70 Gouds to a dollar. This has not changed the price for anything on the streets! That means this is greatly affected all international missions working there. It now costs DOUBLE to pay staff, by food, ect…
For example, it has been costing $3000 a month to pay for food for three orphanages and cooks for FREM, now it is over $6000 a month! That is a big deal!! There are not places to go and buy things cheaper, Shelly and the team are looking at every option. And it IS NOT AN OPTION to send less because that means literally taking food from the kids. I cannot even think of doing that especially if we are sitting down to eat each day with plenty on our table. This is not just money, it is vital food and nutrition for kids who cannot do anything to care for themselves.
Shelly and Byron have 30 employees and 150+ kids at their school they feed each day. The 30 employees support their families, and in Haiti, that is not just their spouse and kids, but often extended family as they live together in family groups. So that translates to easily 200 people that rely financially on Maranatha (Shelly and Byron’s ministry). ALL THEIR COSTS HAVE DOUBLE too!
The story on this page explains this even more. https://sourceoflifeministries.com/a-currency-crisis-in-haiti/
WHY? HOW? Because of corruption. Because there are no checks and balances in the country. Because the Theif comes to Steal Kill and Destroy (John 10:10)
There is not an answer other than that. Ministries in Haiti (including us and Shelly and Byron) feel responsible both to continue their work in Haiti and to be good stewards with resources others are giving to them. This is not their fault, they still want to do both and are doing both yet they worry that people will doubt the latter. Don’t! Instead, be made at the enemy and fight the spiritual battle with us!
But please pray. Pray for corruption to be exposed (in Haiti and here). Pray for God to supernaturally provide for all the ministries in Haiti dealing with this, pray God would do miracles and multiple resources (like the jar that never ran out for the widow who helped Elijah or the bread and fish that Jesus multiplied to feed thousands…)
And please consider giving!! Give what you can, give what God tells you but give somethings. We have probably taken over 100 people to Haiti over the years, more have wanted to go but haven’t been able to and more are interested in what we do… If everyone gave, there would be more than enough to feed the kids and help Byron and Shelly.
One of the worst things about 2020 is that it made our nation even more self-centered, stay safe, stay home… Yes, we have a lot going on here, yes people in the USA are in need, and Yes, we need to be praying about all, trusting God like never before, and doing what we can to help where we can with what God puts in front of us.
You can give online here or you can bring/send checks to Operation Go 229 High St Mineral Point, WI 53565. The kids need to eat every day, we send money monthly, please consider donating monthly.
You could also consider doing a fundraiser by selling with Papillon…. That helps Haiti in two ways! 🙂
God is still God, His Name is above EVERY name. Our Trust is in Him! But He uses people like you and me! How cool is that!!