Philip Peters, Restore Haiti’s founder was a teenager in 1997 when he met Gerald Lafleur during a mission trip to Jamaica. At that time Lafluer, a native of Jacmel Haiti, was a college student studying to become a pastor.
The two quickly developed a friendship, and Philip promised to stay in touch with Lafleur, which he did via mail throughout high school and college. In 2004 Philip took a team of 12 people to visit Lafleur who had since married and was a pastor of a local church on the island of Antigua. While in Antigua, Pastor Lafleur shared his vision of his homeland of Haiti with the group and cultivated the idea of visiting Haiti.
That following December, Philip assembled a team of six people to go to Jacmel, Haiti to visit Restoration Ministries, a church Lafleur worked with. They fell in love with the community and assembled another team five months later to revisit their new friends.
“After seeing the need, I knew that the little that I had and the resources that I had were something I could use, and a long term commitment was birthed.” Philip said after visiting the Haitian community.
With the support of his Bible study teacher and pastor of Conduit Church, Darren Tyler, and with help from many of his friends, Philip started a sponsorship program for the children in the Haitian community. Since then, 380 children have been sponsored, a building has been built to facilitate the feeding program, clinic, pre-school, and many homes for those who were destroyed in the earthquake. In January 2010, Philip turned his 30th birthday party into a fundraiser, which provided the funds to start the Restore Haiti non-profit.