Friday, June 25, 2010

Big eyes.


Today we had a visitor. She was pretty much the sweetest woman I've ever met. Her name is Annalisa and she's from Iceland. Really, Iceland? Really. I didn't even know people LIVED in Iceland. It just sort of sounds like a made up place. But I digress...

She was just hanging with me and kind of seeing what I do on a day to day basis. When she came over our house, she really liked our kids. She looked at Josiah and said, "Oh, you are just beautiful. You have really big eyes."

Nia, the ever-kind, gentle ( and observant) child, chimed in with her two cents... "Yeah, and he's got really big ears and a really big head too."

Nice, huh? (And if I were her, I would have thrown in "big eyebrows" too.)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Missionary vs. a humanitarian

In light of my last post and frustration with the current situation in Haiti, the ever-wise Nick Mangine gently reminded me of something I needed to be reminded of yet again--

I didn't come here to be a humanitarian. I came here as a missionary.

Now, just by default a lot of missionary work is humanitarian.

But the truth is, if that's the focus of what we're doing, we will always fail. Always. How gracious of God to place me here in a place where I can never "succeed." ;)

Someday I will get this through my head-- it's not my job to "save" Haiti. (Which is good, because if it was, I'd be doing a really sucky job.)

My job is not providing hope. My job is to be the body of Christ, and in doing so, point people to the true source of hope.

Thanks for the reminder Nick.

Wet beds

Let me start of by saying very frankly that this message comes from a place of discouragement, so please forgive me if it seems like a "half-empty" type of post.

People, words cannot describe how freakin' terrible conditions are in Pinchinat right now. I know you're tired of hearing it. I am sadder and sadder every time I go. I called Nick on the way home today in tears. I have lived in Haiti for over a year now and I've seen a lot of need. I've lived here through the earthquake and all the terror that brought. And everyone just keeps saying that the real problem is going to be that rainy season is coming and to expect outbreaks of disease.

What everyone feared would happen is happening.

It's horrible.

And no one has anywhere to go.


Every single time I go (every day) moms tell me about how their kids have diarrhea and have stopped eating. Out of the 80 babies we've distributed diapers to in the past 7 days, 60 (SIXTY) of them had diarrhea. Yesterday I pulled up just as an 11 month old baby was crawling in the mud (diaperless) spewing diarrhea all over the ground. And I thought about my most recent rant about MY kids having an outbreak of dysentery. Yeah, I have diapers. And wipes. And a mop. And bleach. And clean water. And a roof over my head. And a mosquito net and a fan. I am going to shut my complaining mouth now.

Seriously, this is SO much bigger than anything we can do. Today dozens of tents all over Jacmel were washed away after the crazy flooding last night. When I picked up Guernia for work this morning I asked her how things were last night in all the rain. She told me that she had water running through the bottom of the tent. All her bedding and sheets got wet. She (like everyone else there) hung them out to dry this morning, but by 9 AM it was raining again, and nothing had the chance to dry today.

Pray for the people of Haiti tonight, specifically the 1.5 MILLION people living in tents and going to sleep in wet beds.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Public service announcement.

So, our house is facing a bit of a, hem, "problem." We seem to have a small outbreak of dysentery. Well, I am not actually sure it's dysentery, but it's something like that. 6 of us in the house have it.

I know this is totally over-sharing, but seriously, this. is. ridiculous.

And in the spirit of Christian love, I'd like to offer you the following advice--

Even if all of your children under the age of 7 are potty-trained, go ahead and put them all in diapers whenever a dysentery outbreak commences at your home. Otherwise you might wake to find that your recently-potty-trained 3-year-old or your friend's recently-potty-trained 4-year-old don't actually have the capacity to "hold it" in time to make it to the potty in the middle of the night, and don't feel it's necessary to let you know this. You may, like me, wake to discover the floors in EVERY room of your house have been splattered with the byproduct of this said dysentery, as apparently these two conspiring trouble-makers felt the need to breakdance all over the place in their liquid-filled drawers.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

You know you have 9 kids when...

... this is the closest thing you can get to a good Father's Day picture with dad and his kids--

This is my actual favorite because it's real life and the look on Nick's face is PRICELESS...

Haitian mousetraps


They work. Like crazy. It's the "disposing" of them that's no so great... I think we're at 9 mice so far.

Gross.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Collaboration


It's amazing what you can come up with when a couple of smart guys put their heads together, huh?

Mice, Frogs, Tarantulas, OH MY!

We're having quite the "vye bèt" (wild beast) inundation at our house.

It started last week, well, actually last month when we started seeing NESTS of baby mice. We realized at that point we had a mouse problem. At night, Nico's been waking up screaming that he sees "rabbits" in his room. (They aren't rabbits, they are mice.) I've seen one or two (or 8) quickly scampering by here and there. This past week, we finally decided to attend to it. We headed to market to find some mousetraps. I wanted the snapping kind but all we could find was the humane ones (homemade) that lure mice into it only to have them killed by our staff. (Don't ask how.) In the past few days we've caught (and they've killed) 7 mice.

But last night they (my kids and staff) added frogs to their list of offending critters (they were actually always there, but last night they happened to find and kill 2.) And you know how you'd step on a spider or a roach? That's how they kill frogs. It's SO nasty.

This morning as I was heading out after breakfast I noticed that someone had also killed a LARGE tarantula in the same fashion. (It was sitting there all dead and huge...) ***shivers***

And I just got to thinking about how glamorous my life is. Mouse infestation. Stepped-on frogs. Dead tarantulas.

You know you wish you were me.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Haitians love Brèsil futbol.

Need proof?

Now THERE'S a fan.

I'm not listening to you!!!

Some things cross cultures with no translation necessary...

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Why cloth diapers won't work.

Today I met 12-year-old Kristina who was washing clothes in front of the
tent of the family she "stays with."


In the past day I've had two people ask me why we're using disposable diapers when they are not cost effective. I agree. They are not cost effective.

However, we're talking about a community of 800 families living on a soccer field. There is simply NO way to wash diapers in a sanitary manner. Not only that, but water is a problem. It came to our attention that the water truck delivering there broke down and we realized that there had been NO WATER in Pinchinat for FOUR DAYS. (Thanks to your support, Joy in Hope was able to provide 2 large water trucks to fill the distribution tanks.) Even on good days, there's a very limited amount of water available to people.

Today we distributed diapers to 20 more babies. 15 of them had diarrhea. There is no way to keep disease from spreading without containing the poop somehow. In my opinion, this is AS important as providing latrines. Using cloth diapers in Pinchinat right now would be like using cloth toilet paper and reusable sanitary napkins. (We also provided sanitary napkins to 50 women today.)

As I've said from the beginning, I KNOW that alone we can't tackle this problem. But a little LESS poop in the mix of mud and muck can't be a bad thing, right?

NOTE: there was a typo initially. I said we provided A sanitary napkin to 50 women, I meant a SUPPLY of sanitary napkins. Enough for one cycle.

Monday, June 14, 2010

The facts.


I have had a great, but depressing day.

Today Guernia and I concentrated our efforts together to get her "going" on her job in Pinchinat. She went with me as we brought two kids to the hospital for TB testing (only to find out the only place that tests for TB in Jacmel is out of TB tests... typical. No worries, we'll head back Wednesday when they should have more.) Guernia met with the Gayel's momma to get info/birth certificate for her so we can (hopefully) get her some treatment for what we suspect is cancer.

And then this afternoon, we started our MORE organized diaper distribution. In order to do things more efficiently and make sure everyone is getting the service they need, Guernia is doing a bit of a "survey" of babies in the camp. We're distributing diapers only to the people who are on the list. This way we can keep track of who we've given diapers to, and who has not gotten any.

This was the depressing part. There are A LOT more babies than I realized. A LOT. She called me to say we needed to be prepared for at least 50 babies today. I told her there was no way. 20 would be a stretch. So she prepared a list of 20 babies. (Well, 22, because that's the way it works.) Wildarne and Yves helped me bundle up the diapers.


So today diapers. And the number of babies we didn't get to-- yikes. It was overwhelming.

Here was the other depressing thing. One of the things she asked was if the infant (this is only kids 2 and under) was healthy.

Out of 22 kids:
  • Only 5 of the moms said they were healthy. (Actually only 3 said they were healthy-- 2 didn't answer.)
  • 11 of them (or half for all you math people) have diarrhea.
  • 9 of them have a cough/cold.
  • 2 of them aren't eating
  • 2 of them have rashes
  • 1 has a fever
(Obviously, some kids had multiple symptoms.)

Now I am not really good with people going into impoverished areas and showering it with goods. I really AM of the "teach a man to fish" camp. But this is a public health situation. In my mind it's the same thing as providing clean water or digging latrines. (Especially when 50% of the babies today had diarrhea.)


I am loving this project, and I am praying for resources to continue it!

The dream.


After inviting three of our kids to walk the land with Nick and the team the other day, Nick sat down with Yves and showed him the plans for the house we hope to build one day on our land...

They were pretty excited. Sometimes I get so caught up in the busy-ness of life here that I forget the dream. Sharing it with our kids made me remember... it was a pretty good feeling.

:)

Pwojè Konekte-- Meet Guernia

Meet Guernia. She’s the newest Joy in Hope employee. Her first day was last week and she’s been hired to help oversee Pwojè Konekte. She brings a lot to the table for us. She’s bright and cheerful. She has a keen attention to detail. And most importantly, she is not only the administrator for the project, she’s living it.

Her story is heart-breaking and compelling.

Guernia is 25 years old. On January 11th she traveled from her home in Port Au Prince to Jacmel to visit her family—her parents were here as well as her 5 sisters and 1 brother. Her husband, a lawyer, stayed behind in Port Au Prince because he needed to work.

As you know, the earthquake happened on January 12. She was separated from her husband by a short, but impassable distance. With the road through the mountains completely blocked to cars/trucks and the phones down, she had no way of knowing the status of her husband. Two days after the quake, she found someone willing to drive her to Port Au Prince on the back of a moto—it cost her $300 Haitian Dollars. (About $37.50 US, or about 10 times the price of getting a ride on a tap tap pre-quake.)

She arrived in a very broken Port Au Prince. Her house was collapsed. Her husband’s office was collapsed. And her husband was dead.

Guernia returned to Jacmel to live with her family. Her mother’s house was damaged as well, and so everyone was sleeping outside. As a family they moved into the refugee camp that was forming at the soccer field in Jacmel, Pinchinat. They lived together for several months, but when the rains started, the rest of her family left Pinchinat to camp out in the yard of their broken homes and Guernia stayed.

Guernia’s job with Pwojè Konekte will be to survey the needs of those in her camp community. Get an inventory of babies, the elderly, those with malnutrition, those seeking employment, etc. She will also be surveying local organizations to determine services available. Then, one by one, we will begin to match families in need to these services. In fact, it’s already happening.

We’ll keep you posted.
Nia loves Guernia.

Pwojè Konekte Explained. (Take 2)

(Since there is not a way to make our fb page truly public without you having a fb account, I am going to double post all my Konekte updates here too...

This was last week--

********
Today is an exciting day.

Today we (Joy in Hope) are launching a new project, "Pwojè Konekte." (The Connection Project.) In order to explain what this project is about, I feel it makes the most sense to start at the very beginning.

I read this quote the other day that I thought hit the nail on the head, "Haiti was home to one of the worst disasters of our time. Then the earthquake hit." --Compassion Magazine

It's true. Haiti, while it is the place I most love to be, could be called one the worst disasters of our time with no exaggeration. There was rampant poverty, corruption, disease, lack of education, lack of clean water... ALL of this. It was here. It has been here for over 200 years. And it doesn't really make sense because we're a 2 hour plane ride away from the MOST advanced society in the history of the world. And while nothing ran smoothly here in Haiti, things ran. People made do-- the word in Creole is "degaje."

But then the game changed. On January 12, 2010, Haiti shook. Hard. Magnitude 7.0 hard. And hundreds of thousands of buildings collapsed. And hundreds of thousands of people died. And millions of people became homeless. Paul Farmer, founder of Partners in Health, described it as an "acute-on-chronic" situation.

The initial wave of support was (fairly) swift and strong. Dozens of countries sent in military. Huge aid organizations became mobilized and delivered uncountable tons of food and water and supplies. Worldwide medical organizations came in with top-notch medication and equipment. The attention of the international community was finally on Haiti. And people wanted to help. And they did. And people wanted to give. And they did.

But as the story began fading from the news, the support started coming in a bit slower. And then it slowed to a trickle. And then lots of people pulled out. Now, I don't wish to paint these relief workers in a non-flattering light. Many of them came here with a specific job to do. They did the job. And now they have left. The problem is that the initial push made by the international community wasn't enough to meet the depth of need that we're left with here in Haiti.

There are ongoing projects focused on rebuilding. There are ongoing projects focused on health. There are ongoing projects focused on education.

But it doesn't change the fact that there are still over a million people displaced. A million people living under tents and tarps and sheets in the middle of fields, in the middle of highways, pretty much everywhere.

Let's be honest. There's nothing any ONE person can do about that. There's no way any one individual or government or organization can tackle this problem alone. But the good news is that we don't need to. There are thousands of individuals and organizations IN Haiti that have been here since the beginning. Thousands who still want to help. And the way I see it, if we all settle on one little corner of a neighborhood, we can start to impact change.

Here's the problem I am seeing in Jacmel, our city. I see thousands of people who remain in the muddy, muddy refugee camp called Pinchinat. It's indescribable. I've spent a lot of time there since the quake visiting with mothers and children. I've seen an evolution of the camp from when meals and services were offered daily, to meals and services being offered every 15 days. I've seen all the people who have standing homes leave. I've seen the number of latrines cut in 1/3. I've seen the tents get hotter as the summer burns on. I've seen the mud and water rushing through these bottomless tents with rainy season upon us. People there are desperate. They need help.

However, there's a silver lining to all of this. And that silver lining is that there ARE still people in Jacmel who have the capacity to help. There are dozens of organizations that existed pre-quake that were addressing the needs of Haitians pre-quake. There are even more now. Not everyone has left. But virtually no one organization even in Jacmel has the ability to handle the numbers we're talking about still living in Pinchinat-- probably 4,000ish?

So this is where we started thinking. We started thinking about what our role has been in relief and what we have to offer. We started thinking about what our organization exists to do (build families.) And we started discovering that there may be a way that while we can't be the solution on a macro-level, we can make significant ripples throughout this camp starting on a micro-level.

So here's the plan.

Today we're launching Pwojè Konekte. (The Connection Project.) We have hired a Pinchinat resident to do much of our legwork and we're going to begin to make some lists. Lists of babies who need diapers. Lists of people who need medical care. Lists of people who need jobs. Lists of orphaned/abandoned children. (The camp is actually very organized by rows/tent #'s and people are well-established there.) Our goal is not to personally meet all these needs. Read on.

At the same time we're going to be going out into the community and determine the services local NGO's and relief organizations are offering. We have a list of a few dozen already. Malnutrition projects, medical clinics, maternity care, orphanages, work programs, rape support programs, etc, etc, etc. We'll get specifics about how to access these services and the costs involved.

And then we'll look at our two sets of lists and we will match people up with services. Our goal is to CONNECT families with services already being offered. We will start small, but we will have the capacity to offer assistance with medical costs and transportation needs. We will have a supply of diapers and over the counter meds. Some of the solutions will be really easy.

But others are going to be messy. It's not going to be easy to prioritize. We truly need to bite off small chunks at a time. But we're committing to an initial six-month period to see what kind of strides we can make.

Here's where you come in. We set a budget and have some donated dollars for initial start-up funds, but other than that, Joy in Hope has agreed to bite this off. So how can you support this work? You can support Joy in Hope. Rather than this being a "special" project of Joy in Hope, this is just sort of who we are. This is no longer earthquake relief or immediate needs. This is WHO we are as an organization. We exist to build families in Jacmel, Haiti. Right now, we can think of no better way than to build into several thousand people in our own community who are really down and out.

Ready to jump in and help?

Donate securely online at http://www.joyinhope.org/donate.asp
(Click on "General Fund" as reason for donation)

OR... send it the "good old fashioned" way through the mail to:
Joy in Hope
2731 NC Hwy 55 #251
Cary, NC 27519

Thanks for helping us help our community. There's no us without YOU!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Missionary Kid.





Nia is SUCH a missionary kid. I mean that in a good way, but sometimes others don't see it the same way.

This was our conversation on the way home from the soccer tournament where she'd worked hard all day. It was about 7PM.

******

Me: As soon as we get home, you and I are getting in the shower and then going to bed.

Nia: But it's Friday night. We have church.

Me: Yes, that's true, but you and I aren't going. Daddy has gone on ahead of us to get things set up and Eddie (our security guard) is driving the other kids.

Nia: So the other kids GET TO go to church, and I don't.

Me: Yes. But you're all sweaty and salty and filthy. There's not time to get showered and dressed...

Nia: That's fine. Next Friday we will just make them all stay home and we'll just go.

Me: No, that's not going to happen.

Nia: That's not fair. They will get more church time than me.

******

Yikes.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Manly men

Manly men curl up with "Little House on the Prairie" books every now and again, right?

The church police.

Our church in Jacmel is policed very well. If you miss a week, you'll have to answer to the authorities.

I happen to miss church for TWO weeks in a row-- I was sick one week and the next week I was away with Nick on vacation. I have LITERALLY had FIVE people ask me this week where I was and when I expected I would be back.

One of them was our pastor, concerned that I perhaps had some problem with the church. (Which is hilarious because the first week I missed was when my HUSBAND was preaching.)

I honestly didn't realize I was that visible that people would notice. Okay, that's a lie. I did realize that. What I didn't realize is that I'd get the 3rd degree.

Hey at least, it's good to know I'm missed.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Pwojè Konekte explained...

All of our Pwojè Konekte updates will be visible on the Joy in Hope facebook page.

You can view the JiH facebook page even if you don't have facebook.

Click HERE!

http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/joyinhope?ref=ts

Monday, June 7, 2010

Pwojè Konekte

Joy in Hope is starting a BRAND NEW program tomorrow called, Pwojè Konekte (The Connection Project ). It's where we're going to begin to be a conduit for people in some pretty rough post-quake situations to get the care/help they need. It's kind of my pet project birthed out of the love I have for the people in the Pinchinat Refugee Camp.

I will explain more tomorrow... what we're doing, how we're doing it, how you can help... etc, etc, etc.

But for now-- just look at these people who are the heart behind what we're starting--

This sassy (malnourished) girl.

This silly boy.

This absolutely HILARIOUS (worm-infested) child.

This confident (malnourished) pre-teen girl.

This strong, proud mama.

This itty, bitty, brand new baby.

This single mom who has a husband in prison.

This single mom to three children, one of whom has cancer.

This precious sweet (malnourished) dumplin'

This family who's fighting a battle with malnutrition and tuberculosis.

This orphaned baby.

It's our goal to get them (and thousands of others) connected with services they need to build their families-- nutrition programs, cancer treatment, orphanages, breastfeeding assistance, prenatal care, medicine, hospital stays, new jobs... etc, etc, etc...

I get goosebumps every time I start thinking about the actual impact we can have!

More tomorrow...

Happy Birthday Prisca!

Prisca turned 8 yesterday. Here are some pics from her party...



I LOVE THIS KID SO STINKIN' MUCH!!!

Update from the Pye's

Hey faithful blog-friends,


I was just reading Danny and Leann's (our directors) latest update to supporters and it was so good and thorough, I thought I'd copy it here to let you see what Joy in Hope has been up to the last few weeks. It's been an exciting ride as we've seen so many new individuals and organizations begin to partner with us. God has been so faithful in the midst of some really crazy times.


If you'd like to start getting the Pye family updates regularly, please email Danny at danny@joyinhope.org.

Mwah!

-G

****



Dear Family and Friends,

It has truly been too long. Again, I am so sorry for the length of time passing since my last update. It has been over six weeks since my last update, for that I am truly sorry. Thank you for your patience and understanding, and I will try to better communicate with you in the upcoming weeks and months.


As always it is a true joy to celebrate our children’s lives as we celebrated the birthdays Riann turned the big 4 years old the end of April, Loudrige turned 17 years old (WOW), Berline turned 20 a few days ago. We even had a small get together with the Mangine family to remember Jabez, on what would have been his fifth birthday.


God is continuing to grow our ministry and our families, and it was a joy hosting the DiProfio family for two weeks, as they introduced their three children Mia (13), Molly (9), and Jack (2) to the growing possibility of becoming a house parent and full time missionary in Haiti. It was huge adjustments for all, but their hearts were captured and many tears where shed as they left. Please continue to keep this family in your prayers, as the JIH leadership team continues to pray about the next steps and the DiProfio family continues to pray about these discussions.


Counselors Gary and Dr. Tim came in for a weekend trip to minister to each of us as individuals, our marriages, and our families. It was incredibly encouraging and a growing/stretching time for each of us as individuals and for us as a team. We are excited about future trips and the potential of a partnership with Dr. Tim’s group, Family Counseling and Associates. We believe this very much speaks into the core of our ministry in building families. Leann and I are planning a trip to the Indianapolis area for more time with both Gary and Tim in mid June.


Nixon and Sandra returned to Jacmel for a short week, to pack up their personal belongings. Although we are sad to say our goodbyes, we are happy and hopeful for them that they will find their ministry and nitch back in Texas. We are so thankful for the years of commitment, the love and kindness they have shown to our family, to JIH teams, and to the boys in the boy’s home.


So it is our turn now, J Leann and I went to Florida for a 10 day respite (and a little work J). It was everything we needed and more. This was our first vacation that we included Riann on, and honestly it was a joy. A friend offered his beach house to us in Siesta Key for a week. It was absolutely beautiful, peaceful, and a restful environment. Then Leann and I went to Tampa for two days to celebrate 8 years of marriage at Busch Gardens and great steak restaurant!! Leann and I both had some major dentist work done that week. It was painful at times, but overall we are SO thankful for a new friendship and partnership with Dr. Maddy’s practice in Bradenton. They gave Leann and me top notch care and attention for free!! As you can imagine, we feel so blessed by God and His people. It was also a joy to share brief updates at two supporting Churches. We spoke at Bradenton Christian Reformed Church the first Sunday, then at Faith Christian the second Sunday. It was also a joy to go back to where Leann and I attended elementary, middle, and high school. To walk through the new buildings, see new and old teachers. We also thanked the elementary Spanish class, as they adopted us after the Earthquake, bringing loose change in every day, raising $1900.00 in the matter of months. We are so thankful for all the support from young and old during our visit. Hearing the stories overwhelmed me, as I heard of 7 year olds doing lemonade stands for us, jars at Subways, single moms’ sacrificial giving, and I could go on and on. This was the first real visit to Florida since the Earthquake (last time we were there Leann was hospitalized the entire time). We were overwhelmed by the amount of love and support we received in our short visit with our family and friends.


I am excited to announce to you, our family and friends, that Joy in Hope has formally decided to begin a partnership with an organization called CCH, Community Coalition for Haiti. (www.cchaiti.org) They have successfully run a medical facility in the North of Haiti for the past 20 years. This organization was responsible for overseeing the medical care within a week after the Earthquake. We worked closely together for months getting medical supplies and teams in and out of Haiti. Over the past few months we have discovered how alike our vision and our passion for ministry and for Jacmel. CCH formally decided to have a full-time presence here in Jacmel, and after many conversations and prayer, JIH and CCH decided to implement a partnership. We have been working full time coordinating their efforts, projects, and teams. They in turn have been helping with the coordination and supporting, and helping build an infrastructure. You will hear more about this partnership below and in the weeks to come.

We have busied ourselves in helping the coordination of dozens of people coming and going over the past month. We have pulled back some on hosting JIH teams through August which has been great to give the breaks and rest our team and families desperately needed, yet it has also been encouraging having people come and go, encouraging us, sharing meals with us, loving on us and our children. As I mentioned we are overseeing the coordination for the CCH teams, and they have people coming and going literally every week. We continue to use our team housing to host other groups this last month we have hosted Mike Goodman, an old friend, bringing in his team. Also ‘Builders without Borders’, another group we met soon after the quake, and the list goes on.


Another exciting announcement is: Hancock family is moving to Jacmel on July 8th !! They will be working helping the coordination for the CCH teams and lodging, and will be our Outreach Directors and team housing hosts. I can’t tell you how excited I am to fill these positions, as I have been coordinating all the CCH efforts up to now, and the team housing has been shared between us and the Rigels. Looking forward to having a fourth family here in Jacmel again, to help share the leadership of our ministries and our families. Please pray for the Hancocks as they finish their support raising, and pack up their home, say goodbye to their families and such. Jon and Jennifer are hosting a benefit concert in Florida so if you can go, support them, I know they would be so grateful. It is Friday, June 18th at 7:00 p.m. at Sarasota Alliance Church; 7221 Bee Ridge Rd. Sarasota, FL. 34241. For more information, feel free to contact Jennifer, at Jennifer@joyinhope.org


We have just facilitated the lease of an 18-room hotel in the heart of Jacmel. CCH is launching a full-time Physical Therapy program in Jacmel. This will be their central focus for the next few months. They are and have been bringing in Physical Therapists and Occupational Therapists from all over the world every week since the end of January. It has been a huge need and will continue to be a need for decades to come. The bottom story will be turned into a Rehab center, and the top story is being prepared for team housing for CCH groups that continue to come. The house is called the Isaiah 61 House. Mikey has been leading the ‘Builders without Borders’ team everyday in the painting and remodeling of the building. The week before he and Georgette spent days in Port-au-Prince with Karen, the director of CCH and Randy the construction coordinator for CCH with purchasing all the supplies for the remodel.


Words can’t describe how blessed we have been. One of the biggest frustrations in our ministry over the past four years in Jacmel has been transportation. We have had endless trouble with given and inherited used vehicles, and have spent tens of thousands of dollars in repair of these vehicles. We have officially retired the Jimmy (the Beast), the Chevy, and the Mitsubishi. They have been replaced this month with a brand new purchase of new 15-passenger van for transport of JIH and CCH teams and new 4-door diesel pick-up truck for the Pye family! This is in addition to the New Daihatsu we purchased just over a month ago. We are so thankful for God’s continual blessings on our ministry and our lives. We are also thankful for the partnership with CCH who has been a significant help building a solid structure for us to run the ministries well.


We hosted a small team from Lincoln Christian University last week. An old friend, Amanda Gray, now married, led the team including her husband, and two other college students. The worked hard building shelves, installing screens at the Mangine’s house, and even took some time to re-unite with our family with some fun time at the beach.


Another team from EMI came in to evaluation our home structurally. We were given a clean bill structurally for our house. I now hope to work towards repairing the cracks in our walls and re-painting our home. As silly as it sounds to a rented building, we feel like it is what is needed for our kids’ sake to continue working through their fears from the earthquake. We also are hopeful to repair our septic system, as it has not been working properly for over six months now. Please pray that God will provide the means to take care of this. I am projecting $4,000.00 for building a new septic tank, and drain field, and repairing the cracks in our home. Please pray for provision.


Randy, Director of ‘Neighborhood Engagement’, came in for a five-day vision trip. http://www.neighborhoodengagement.org/ . He and his ministry very much want to partner with JIH in helping build homes on the Raymond land. As a foster parent on the Navajo reserve for seven years, Randy is very passionate about what we are trying to do with families here in Jacmel. Please pray for Randy and for the leadership of JIH as we pray through the best way in raising the support, and beginning the building on the Raymond land.


The last thing I want to inform you of is the launch of a new JIH outreach ministry. With Gwenn Mangine’s overseeing, we are launching Projé Konekte (or project connection) in the Pinchinat refuge camp. We have hired a full-time Haitian woman, who was widowed because of her house collapsing, and is currently living in Pinchinat herself. Living conditions in the camp are horrible. With the rainy season among us it is only getting worse by the day. It is a camp of over 4,000 residents that have no home and nowhere to go. Our primary purposes are to connect pregnant women with a good maternity center, connect malnourished children with a child nutrition program, provide diapers to stem the outbreak of disease, provide over-the-counter medicine to those who are sick, transport people to the hospital who need further care and finally to tell the stories of these men, women, and children, and connect them with people from around the World who have a desire to help, but don’t know where or how to. To support this new ministry or to learn more about this, please contact Gwenn, at Gwenn@haitianchildrenshome.org


Thank you again for your continued support and prayer for our family and our ministry.

Praise Reports

1. Celebrating lots of birthdays! Happy birthday to Riann, Loudrige, and Berline!

2. DiProfio family had a great visit with us. They are praying about moving down to Haiti and starting our 3rd home. This was the first visit with their 3 children.

3. Tim and Gary came down for a few days to continue to help us process and move forward with all the new changes in our lives.

4. We bought 2 new vehicles! A 15-passanger van for teams and a 4-door truck for us!

5. Partnership with CCH.

6. Great teams coming and serving with us! Thank you Lincoln Christian!

7. Hancock family has bought their tickets to move down! We are so excited and can’t wait until they are here!

8. Though we have been working and serving in Pinchinat from almost the beginning, we have officially made steps to start up something permanent to continue to help these homeless and sick Haitians who have lost everything.

9. EMI team (engineers) picked at our walls and said that our house is safe! Praise God!

Prayer Request

1. Pray for each of us missionaries. That we will continue to move forward, trusting God, and love others.

2. For the Hancock family to finish up raising support and ‘tying up loose ends’ before they come down.

3. That we will be able to raise funds to fix earthquake damage in our home and build a new cistern for our home.

4. Our partnership with CCH. That God will continue to bless us.

5. For the doctors, physical therapist, and teams that are coming down and serving in the Jacmel area.

6. Leann and my’s trip to Indianapolis in a couple of weeks. As we continue to process the huge changes in our lives in the past 2 years since Jabez’s death.

7. For continual monthly support for each family and home.

8. That we will be able to raise the rest of the money to build a home or two on the land soon. We have talked with several people and organizations that are interested in helping us.

Danny, Leann, and Riann at Siesta Key Beach:

After the earthquake my camera started to not work on and off. This last month it has stopped working all together. I was able to drop it off while in the States for our vacation to get it fixed. I’m hoping that when I get it back in a couple of weeks it will be good as new. Sorry for the lack of pictures.

Thank you and God bless!

In His Hands,

Danny and Leann Pye

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Realization: I blog for me not for you. :)

Here I am on an amazing weekend vacation away with my husband. This was part of the respite care plan recommended to us by counselors and our awesome Board of Directors to try to heal some of the trauma we've been through during the past 5 months. (PS-It's working. Can't remember being this relaxed in a L.O.N.G. time.)

But it's this weird thing-- I find myself wanting to blog. We've spent hours in the pool and in the ocean. We've eaten great food and drank $7 cocktails (Well, I have. Nick's a teetotaler... but he did drink two $3 fresh mango smoothies.) We've napped and had hot showers. I'm halfway through "Brava Valentina" (Adriana Trigiani's newest novel I downloaded onto my ebook reader.) It's been fantastic and luxurious. I've been eating real butter and have loved stretching out in a king-sized bed. I marveled yesterday at the fact that I was in an artificially cooled room using artificially heated air to blow dry my hair made wet by my artificially heated shower water. It felt so strange and it seemed to go against everything I now live. (And it was wonderful by the way.)

But in these few hours we have between showers and dinner, I find myself wanting to blog and debrief the events of the day. And it just hit me-- I blog not because I care if you read it. I blog because I am extremely (EXTREMELY) extroverted and living in Haiti has capped much of my ability to speak. I just don't have very many friends here. And the friends I have, I can't communicate with fully. As Nick said, "Blogging for you is a way to pretend you have people to talk to." :)

People talk about how vacation should be a time of relaxing and unplugging. I agree with that to a certain degree, and we've done that. But in all reality, blogging is relaxing to me. It's a way I debrief recent events. I discover how much I really LOVE being away with my husband while I am writing it down. And for the record, Nick is actually an introvert and needs some time alone-- this way we both get what we want. :)

I love that people care about our family and I love that I have been placed in a position to lend a small voice to some of the social justice issues in Haiti. I love that because I love Haiti. But that's not why I blog. I blog because I love to write stories. When we were on our 3 week sabbatical a few months ago I did a lot of writing. More than I've ever done. Some of it wasn't healthy. Some of it I deleted. Other entries I finished and saved-- not sure if it was the right time to publish. Other entries sit there saved and half-written. The beginnings of ideas I am exploring.

So I guess all of this is to say... Judge away if you think I shouldn't be spending time on the internet while I am on my weekend of romance with the hubs. I say it helps me enjoy my husband more... You say potato... (Plus, he's taught me what Twitter is... )

Vakay

Vacation with Nick is SO. AWESOME. To quote Tara Livesay, "It's amazing what a little AC can do for a love life." :) We've had ZERO fights. ZERO. That's like a personal record since the quake. In all seriousness, we are truly relaxed here and are LOVING this time. It's healing.

The only drawback so far is THIS DUDE who got settled into the cabana next to us.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Healed by God.

Tomorrow I am heading out for a weekend away with Nick. It will be our first time alone together since we headed out for the DR just a couple of weeks after the quake. Looking forward to the time alone with him in a location I will only disclose AFTER the fact. (In other words, I am not interested in running into any of you... :)

But that's not the point of my post today. Since we're leaving in the morning, I didn't want to forget a huge day in our lives-- June 4th. The day Josiah was "healed by God" via the hands of surgeon, Dr. Andrew Lodge.

This is Josiah June 4, 2007 after he had surgery to repair Transposition of the Great Arteries.

This is Josiah on his birthday a couple of days ago...


Josiah: Hebrew origin. Meaning, "Healed by God."


Good luck Katherine Heigl

I wish you luck Katherine. I really do. Let me know how that works out for you...

http://www.dailyindia.com/show/378884.php

(Sorry for the pessimism, the state of Haitian adoption is SO freakin' frustrating right now.)

Father Abraham

So Nia is standing in the living room sweeping up some of her scraps from her latest project and singing the old Sunday school song, "Father Abraham" to herself. However, as she goes, she's translating it into Kreyol...

Papa Abraham gen anpil timoun
Anpil timoun genyen Papa Abraham
e mwen se yon ladan
e ou se tou
donk tout moun adore bondye...

I don't know where she comes up with this stuff.

I LOVE living in a new culture. It's like meeting my kids all over again.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Pinchinat-- our team has some ideas a brewin'...

More info on how you can help VERY, VERY soon!

Meanwhile-- meet some of the kiddos I love there...

Kenya

Jennifer

Gaiel

Edwinson

Angelin

Tirat

Peterson

Schneider


Vania

Danieka