Friday, June 28, 2013

HATS School IMKH

May 18th in Haiti is known as Flag Day or Fet Drapo.   Our school celebrated with a party again this year.  It included a meal prepared by secondary students, a hired band that played on site at the school and for all our students who marched outside the compound singing the National Anthem.

Leaving the school Flag Day May 18th

Students preparing the meal

Grade 1 with Dieunel & Josie

Director Luckner dishing up rice and beans

The students finished writing year end exams ten days ago, and were able to stay home, returning today for their results.  Grade Six and Grade 9 in Haiti have to write Government exams.   Our JJ had to go to Verrettes last week to write his Grade 6 exams and Grade 9's are writing this week.  The results of these exams will not be available until August. 

Students writing year end exams

My handsome son, JJ, going to write the government exams

Today was 'Report Card Day' at HATS.  Our kids did fairly well this year.  We have a couple here in the Children's Homes who never want to do any school work but who expect good marks anyway.  Hopefully they can come to realize it does take work and study to make good grades.

Report card day

Report card day

Our school as a whole did not do too badly.   Luckner and I, however, are very concerned about our grade nine class this year.   Results will be out in August but we are not expecting many to pass.  This will not be the fault of our school - teachers or direction.  The students were not willing to put in any effort at all.  They had bad attitudes throughout the whole year.  (We had problems with these same students when they were in grade 8.)  Due to this grade 9 class Luckner and I have decided to wait one more year before adding grade 10 to our school.  We will add grade 10 in September of 2014 instead.

A reminder to all you wonderful sponsors who are making a big difference in the lives of the student(s) you are helping.  It is time once again to send your sponsorship funds to the HATS office in Yarmouth, for the next school year.   I thank you in advance for taking care of this so uniforms can be prepared and textbooks purchased. 

Bathroom construction in Boy's Home

In previous blogs there were photos of the plumbing work in the yard and construction underway on a bathroom in the boy's home.   The construction is now 99% finished.  Just one small task remains.  We needed to get through the finishing up of the school year first.  The boys and the house mother are excited about no longer having to leave the house to find the bathroom. 

Boy's bathroom construction

Boy's bathroom

Boy's Bathroom 95% finished

Brad smashing cement in order to hook up water line to Boy's Bathroom

Luckner and I want to say a huge 'Thank You' to the Newfie team, under the leadership of Don, aka Misye Komik, who came at end of April, for raising the funds to do the bathroom and to redo most of the plumbing work in the yard.   We are all much better off because of getting this work done.

I can't blog without saying THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU.  This mission would not be here without you.  The children would not be living here in the children's homes without you.  (Some may not even be alive today.)  More than two hundred children throughout the area would not be attending school without you.  Many children from our school would not be attending church without you. Food and clothing would not be distributed without you.  The needs that we help with under 'Mercy' would not be happening without you.  

All of you are the HATS mission - you are all supporting missonaries.  Luckner and I and now the Reimers are on the front lines but without all of you we would not be touching the lives of the children in the surrounding area.

IT has been and always will be   ALL  ABOUT  THE   CHILDREN 

May the Lord bless and keep all of you in his care.

Karen and gang

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Once more a blog of very few words.

The photos speak for themselves.

Enjoy the photos of our HATS children.

Anne & Karena

JJ and Ti Luc

Helping make a birthday cake

Dieunel and Judel

House mother assistant

Jonathan likes to drive

Leica in the air

Moise with Jonathan

My two girls doing their Sat laundry

Sandra can play hockey too

Quiet playtime together

Soccer in school yard

Face painting fun

Remember everything we do here is  ALL  ABOUT  THE  CHILDREN.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Reimers at HATS-Haiti

The Reimer family, Brad, Lois, Kaeli and Peter, have been a part of the HATS-Haiti Mission for almost five months.

They are a tremendous asset and are here for the 'long haul'. Brad and Lois work well with Luckner and I and are willing to assist the both of us in every way they can. 

The Reimers at HATS

Kaeli and Peter fit in extremely well with our children and are very helpful with the little ones. Kaeli is a special young woman who has a big heart for the less fortunate and those who are 'a little different'. She is an absolute gem with Ti Luc and with Ti Fi.

Kaeli & Ti Luc singing in devotions

Peter fits in beautifully here

Brad is a 'jack of all trades' which makes him a tremendous asset to both Luckner and I. Too, he is a bookkeeper!!! Yeah and amen. I have designated most of the financial aspect of the work over to Brad and am happy that I will not have to take it back.

Lois is great with the house mothers and works well with Martha in supervising what happens in the children's homes. Too, she is a big help to me in our Sunday morning services as she shares doing the children's messages with me. Having to do the teaching only half time is a huge help.

Both Brad and Lois are good with all the children.

Brad, Lois, Jofky & Karena

The Reimers need to return to Alberta in August for a break, to take care of some things, and to bring back some of the supplies they were unable to bring when they moved here.

I am wondering if any of the HATS followers/supporters have any Air Miles or Aeroplan Miles they might be willing to share with the Reimers to help them return to Alberta late August for a few weeks. Perhaps help could be found to help pay for part of a flight or two with 'miles'.

If there is anyone who can help in this way please let me know.

Thank you one and all for your continued support of the HATS-Haiti Mission and the work we endeavour to do with the children throughout this area. May God bless you.

IT  IS  ALL  ABOUT  THE  CHILDREN

With love from all of us at HATS.     Karen

Friday, June 14, 2013

A big thank you...

...to Steve, Grant, Pete and Darren for coming to HATS.   It was great having you four men from Brentview Baptist in Calgary.

(Pastor) Steve, Thanks for putting it together and seeing that it happened.  Thanks for 'everything'.  'Everything' covers more than I can express here.  Your coming and bringing  the group was indeed a blessing.

'Pastor' Steve - team leader watching Grant working on blog

(Dr.) Grant,  Thank you for coming with Steve.  I am really glad you did.  Thanks for great blogging, and for every way that you entered into life here.  It was delightful having you with us.

'Dr' Grant - the blogger

(Pastor) Pete,  I wish to say thank you to you also for coming with Steve.  It was fun having you around.   Ti Luc still calls you his 'buddy'.  You have a great way with kids.

'Pastor' Pete - Ti Luc's buddy

Darren, Thanks so much to you too for joining Steve and spending a few days with us.  It was indeed a pleasure to spend time with you.

'Mr Communications' - Darren

You are all very welcome to return.  I would like to have you back and Radio Creole wants you back.

When the team was ready to leave early a.m. Wednesday,  Ti Luc pulled one suitcase to the bus (a major feat for him) and told the bus driver he wanted to go too.

Almost ready to leave

Ti Luc taking one suitcase to bus

Less than halfway to Port au Prince we encountered a huge blockage (blokese) in traffic.    The folks in that area were protesting (and rightly so) the lack of electricity - lack meaning 'no electricity' from EDH for many months.   They blocked the road and so there were many miles of vehicles stuck.  Our bus driver decided to drive illegally (nothing new) to try to somehow get past the mess.  That meant that the HATS truck with Luckner and Daniel, riding shotgun, had to do likewise as we had to stick together.   It was an interesting experience, to say the least, for the team members who come from country/countries where road and driving laws are expected to be obeyed.

Blokis (blockage) in the road enroute to airport

Interesting drive illegally to try and get through the blocked mess of traffic

We made it to the airport just fine where we had to say 'Bye for now'.  Luckner and I believe they will be back.  We believe God has started something that will continue.

Steve, Luckner and Grant chatting before leaving us for Canada

Thanks again Steve, Grant, Pete and Darren for coming and blessing us as you did.

Bye guys

All the children, the Reimers, and three of the house mothers say thank you too (as you will see in the photo) for not eating any of the sugarcane before you left as it is very difficult to find these days. They all thoroughly enjoyed eating what was purchased for you.   (Reason the group did not get to eat it is because it was put in the freezer by one of the ladies working in the kitchen.   Who looks in a freezer for sugarcane?  Not Karen for sure!)   I promise we will have sugarcane for you on your return visit.

Thanks Mama Karen for buying sugar cane for Steve, Grant, Pete and Darren but giving it to us

Blessings to the four of you as you return to your lives in Canada - a world that is very different from the world of Haiti.

With love from all of us at HATS where what we do is   "ALL  ABOUT THE  CHILDREN"

Karen and gang

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Day #3 Haiti Brentview

Last night we were treated to a spectacular show. There was an impressive lightning and thunderstorm above us. The rain cooled things off a bit which helped us get a better night’s sleep. We awoke with excitement and again some grogginess wondering what this day would hold for our team.

We again woke early so we could get to the school in time for morning chapel. It was lead by an inspired worship leader who rallied the kids in chants and songs to God. We couldn’t begin to describe the decibel level created by hundreds of children enthusiastically praising God, in a room with a concrete floor and low, tin roof! After chapel the children gathered in the courtyard to sing the Haitian anthem and raise the national flag. Today was the last day of school so the kids were particularly excited.

Morning devotions at the school

We then had breakfast while having long discussions with Karen about HATS, its vision and future plans. We pondered how Brentview could better partner with this mission and this community. It was fun to have so many creative minds and passionate hearts at the table to think together about what the future holds for this ministry. But God (through Karen) has the answers and we just need to be good listeners!

After breakfast we had a couple of hours of downtime. This was a great chance to read, pray and catch a nap. While we rested we could feel the heat gradually increasing along with the humidity. This is the downside to last night’s refreshing rainfall. We think it was hotter today but are feeling more acclimatized to the heat. Well only partially acclimatized, because it still feels hot!

Morning rest time

Also morning rest time

After lunch we went for a tour of two of the nearby towns. This was a great chance to see what life outside the orphanage is like. It’s hard to make sense of it all as there is a wide spectrum of situations and living conditions - all poor by North American standards. Despite this, there was much beauty to be seen. There were colorful murals, shop fronts and buses. There were kids giggling and singing in their sharp-looking school uniforms, no doubt glad school was done. There were other people hiding undercover trying to escape the sun’s heat. We were in the back of a pickup truck burning up while trying to get a few more photos to share with our friends and family. After coming back we rushed to find fluids, shade from the sun and a cool shower.

Four Canadians in court house in Verrettes

Always looking for a way to cool off

returned to mission from touring around a little

Later in the evening we had a chance to play with kids and enjoy their company. We have learned to love them already and will miss them when we return home. A couple of the kids received birthday gifts from their sponsor families and the other children gathered around to participate in the excitement. Finally, we all had a treat of melted "Big Turk" bars. Yum!

Skipping fun - Djemima in the air

Play time with the kids

Beautiful Ti Fi

Ti Luc arm wrestling with Steve

Treat time with Darren

After dinner, it was time to become radio stars. We were asked to take a one hour slot at a local Christian radio station. Steve was not sure why he was chosen to sing on the radio but he went with it and sang beautifully. We talked about music, our countries and local worship in our homelands. Steve and Pete talked about Ireland and played a couple of Irish worship songs. Darren was a spokesman for Australia and Grant for Canada. We sang three songs as a quartet which we were told were recorded so they could be replayed over and over. We hope they are okay but we were told they were great. To our surprise, we were asked to come back and perform again in the future. Should we quit our jobs? Probably not! We were fully blessed by the experience and even entered into worship ourselves.

Now we are back at the orphanage, preparing for our departure tomorrow and have already said our goodbyes to the children and the Reimers. We are thinking about how much we have been blessed and encouraged by all those we’ve met. We’re delighted to have strengthened Brentview’s relationship with our brothers and sisters at HATS. Our church is blessed to have such great, Godly friends abroad. We will long remember this trip and the people here.

Blessings to HATS and Haiti!