Here at the airport waiting to board, its quite a sight to see so many US American mission groups making a return trip home, too: Midwives for Haiti, God is No Stranger, Hope for Haitian Children, Houses for Haiti - to name the groups boarding the JetBlue flight to Ft Lauderdale at 2:55PM. The needs here for homes, health care and education are tremendous. Maybe like the proverb “How do you eat a elephant? One bite at a time!” that’s how some hope and change may come. Maybe it’s the good will of groups like these and Water=Life that can effect the life of some child, of one family. And that is good, isn’t it? Good in the sense that someone has been helped. And yet, is it? How do people of goodwill and hope impact the larger socio-economic needs within a corrupt political system? I don’t know. I have not answer, no supstantive response. I can only tell you that the response to Water=Life has been powerful, the imaginative vision of the W=L Haitian advisors is amazing.
The advisors identified and personally invited people of their communities to attend the filter education program. I sensed that this invitation to not only have clean water in the home but to see themselves as potential leaders and actors in the community made for a powerful program and deep experience for all of us - advisors and recipients alike. People were attentive, asked great questions about the system and helped one another in class. I didn’t observe this same dynamic last year. I credit this to the commitment of the advisors and their passion for being hope and health to their neighbor, to their country. This are not my words but those of Marie Estelle, Wadson and Jimmy. They are in agreement that if every family in Haiti had access to clean water, it would profoundly change the direction of the country - from health, education, employment and, most significantly, hope. They believe that access to clean water will break the on-going cycle of disease, that access to clean water is fundamental to the life of their beloved country.
We’ve seen the impact of dirty water in Fling, MI and what has happened there to the children and families if that community. Regrettably, the filter system W=L uses does not remove mineral contaminates or we would find ourselves there, as well. The worry and anxiety, the fear, anger and frustration of the community makes front page news, blasts the airwaves. Water is a fundamental human right. It is reported that globally 1 child under the age of 5 will die every 15-20 seconds from water-borne diseases (wbd); 25% of all the world’s hospital beds are for people suffering from wbd. We can change that equation and we will. I invite you to join us.
Time to board the plane. More to share in Ft Lauderdale.