by Mary Friedman
(Thank you to Karen Pohlman for translating Pastor Francoise’ e-mails from the French for us!)
The Haiti Team is happy to share pictures and an annual report for 2017-2018 we have just received from Pastor Francoise Villiers, Executive Director of our mission partner in Haiti: the National Council of Spiritual Churches of Haiti. Last year our church donated money for roof repairs at the headquarters building in Port-au-Prince:
First Church raised almost $16,000 during the Haiti Scholarship Fund Drive last spring. That money has enabled many more students to attend school this year!
Bishop Fontus with students at his school in Saute which Mark Pohlman and Mary Friedman visited last year with Pastor Francoise.
Girls classes at Bishop Fontus’ School in Saute.
Pre-school students at the CONASPEH–supported school in Saute.
Pastor Francoise writes to us that “Education is a luxury in this country, from day to day, things become more difficult for the parents. If it was not for Longmeadow, we do not know how we could help these children in difficulty. For the families that have 5-8 cchildren in a house, our school cannot help them all, thus every third child in a family has a grant(scholarship) in this program subsidized by the Longmeadow church.”
Following are some examples of the things that C.O.N.A.S.P.E.H. does in Pastor Francoise’ words: “Helping children achieve self-fulfillment of their life through the development of their capacity to help their family. Sometimes these are through church projects, sometimes there are through community projects. This year a young person was chosen (by Darrell Cantrell, a representative of the Disciples of Christ Church in Kansas) to receive a sewing machine. He now prepares backpacks to sell to the school. We began with 100 bags, naturally our role was to help him develop his talent….which is beneficial to his family and also C.O.N.A.S.P.E.H. The backpack costs $200 Haitian dollars ($20 US) . A profit of $30 Haitian dollars (HT) will return to the College St. Andre (the pre-K- high school program at C.O.N.A.S.P.E.H. Headquarters).”
Orphanages: “Helping children become an important thing in this country because so many children come to the capital from provincial towns, who have neither mother nor father or whose parents died in the January 12, 2010 earthquake. It is the work of the church to help them. C.O.N.A.S.P.E.H. works through the member churches to support their orphanages.
“Food for Learning”: “Starting in 2004 by Dr. Yarborough and his wife, we have worked with our long-time partner, Global Ministries, to support parents by supplying them (students) with one meal a day. Because we know a child who does not eat cannot learn in school or have good health. Our aim (is ) assisting as many children as possible to somehow regaining healthy lifestyle, by receiving one balanced meal a day, year round, so that they have a chance at succeeding academically.”
Help after Hurricane Matthew: “Haiti is a fragile country by we, at C.O.N.A.S.P.E.H. , along with all of our friends and Global Ministries, are able to organize and help families, and our community. We have helped our people ganin the means to allow them to get organized after Hurricane Matthew. Conaspeh demonstrates to his/her members, self-management, then every member has to demonstrate their motivation to be able to meet the need for their family. 67 families have each received a male and female of the following animals. (Sheep, Goats, Pigs)
Aid given to those affected by Hurricane Matthew
CONASPEH SCHOLARSHIP Program:
“Our friends in USA help us with this CONASPEH program. The scholars participate in the program for 4/5 years or for 7 years if they are enrolled in medical school. There are two six month terms for each school year. At the end of the school term, the student takes an exam. The results are given to CONASPEH’S administration.
CONASPEH is not responsible for the subjects they fail. Students who have failed all subjects for the term will relinquish their spot and be replaced by a new student.
The money is given to the students by check on the name of the respective college.”
Dance Class at CONASPEH
CONASPEH students performing. (The school always needs more instruments!)