The mission of Restore Haiti is -

to empower a community to rise from a culture of desperation to one of hope through providing assistance in the areas of nutrition, education, health care, and general living conditions.

Get on the Bus!

I wanted to take a second to thank you for being a part of Restore Haiti. You are receiving this letter because we feel you have played a major role in our community and might have a desire to continue to connect with us. We are very excited for the progress we have made with our community in Morne Oge. As with any project, you often start out intending to do one thing and that evolves in to more. Have you ever worked to restore a room in your house and it only took you one trip to Home Depot? Probably not. Often once you start a home-improvement project, you discover more things you can do, another layer of paint that needs to be removed, a piece of wood that needs to be replaced once you uncover what’s underneath. This is what we have found with Restore Haiti- the deeper we go the more the cost, the more the need, the more invested in to restoring this community we have all become. As someone who is invested in restoring this small piece of Haiti, I want to invite you, your community and your church/organization to join us for our next steps as we ‘Go Deeper’in 2013.

Let me explain what I mean by ‘Go Deeper’. Because of the growth we have experienced with Restore Haiti, we have learned we need to take some additional steps to continue to move forward and grow as a healthy organization. Our project in Haiti is strong- the projects we set out to start and support at the very beginning are being funded and moving forward as planned, and now we need to establish strong roots so that we can continue to grow and make an even deeper impact in Morne Oge. There are a few areas where we are going deeper but in order to do that we need financial assistance. The Restore House has 8 teen girls who are in need of more assistance, Jackson who lives at the Restore House needs additional care. There are children, who are sponsored, but need additional help above and beyond basic care, such as medicines or clothing. When the Tap tap needs repaired or the generator breaks this creates a financial gap. The list of ‘unexpected’ needs can go on and on as you know. We are looking for those who will help us build an account to pay for these types of expenses, and we are looking to be able to dedicate more time and energy in to going deeper in to the lives of those we serve.

To that end, we are excited to announce that we are going to be hiring our first stateside full time employee. Many of you may not be aware that, to date, Restore Haiti has worked as an all-volunteer staff. Every member of our Haiti team has a full time job, and spends hours in the evening and on weekends working on tasks to keep Restore Haiti up and running. We feel that by hiring a staff member, it will allow Restore Haiti to grow to make an even greater impact, have a more effective sponsorship program, and better prepare teams for their upcoming trips. We see this as an essential step to seeing the project in Haiti become even greater than it ever has been! Additionally, we want to continue to grow our staff of Haitian team members who run the day-to-day operations in Morne-Oge, ensuring our long-term sustainability and overall effectiveness in the community where we are planted. Pastor Lafleur is another person who has never received personal finances for his work, we feel that this needs to change as well in 2013 and are looking to compensate him in a small way for the service he has provided. I think you all agree this is something that should be done.
What am I asking of you? To join the “Restore Haiti Community”. We are looking for those who will commit to a year of monthly donations to help the community grow on an ongoing, consistent basis. These funds will be used to help Restore Haiti “Go Deeper” in 2013 and beyond. By joining this Restore Haiti Community of supporters, we will be able to meet the needs that arise day to day in Haiti and those that arise out of being a 501c3 in good standing here in the United States. This special fund will ensure we have the ability to continue to transform Morne Oge by providing food, nutrition, medical care, homes, and jobs to the people in that community.
Please click on the link below to sign up to join the community of supporters. We have a large goal and are looking for those who can pledge to give $10, $25, $100 a month, or whatever you choose, to help us Go Deeper in 2013. After signing up, one of our Restore Haiti team members will follow up with you in the next few weeks to help you get started. Any amount, large or small, will help as we all work together to transform lives in Haiti.
To join, click here.
Thank you for your help!
Philip Peters
Restore Haiti President

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Christmas Gifts Due Nov 5th!

Restore Haiti is ready to receive your Christmas gifts! We know it feels early here in the U.S. but with the way shipping works we are already approaching our Christmas gift deadline. We are collecting gifts for your sponsored child, and also need several hundred more gifts for children in the community who are NOT sponsored! Due to the large increase in sponsored children this year we are asking everyone to PLEASE stick with the following guidelines: · The gift must fit within a gallon size zip lock bag (yes you need to be able to close the bag) and it needs to be less than 2 lbs in weight. Restore Haiti reserves the right to remove some items that are overweight or oversize, so please try to work within these guidelines! · Please clearly label the bag with your name and your sponsored child’s name · If you can, send $5 to Restore Haiti to help us get it there! Please avoid dolls, guns/war toys, and skull/crossbones decorations on items. · ALL gifts must be received by November 5 in order to be included! You can mail your gift to Restore Haiti P.O. Box 680278 Franklin, TN 37068. If you are shipping using UPS/FedEx rather than the USPS please contact theresa@restorehaiti.com for an alternative mailing address. If you are able, we are looking for people who are willing to make up some generic gift bags for unsponsored children (same guidelines as above). If you would like to put together a few extra bags and send them along that would be wonderful! This is also a great project for church groups, offices, and schools to take on together. We are looking to ship 1000 gifts total. If you can mark the age range and gender that the gift bag is appropriate for on the outside of the bag that would be very helpful! We are accepting gifts for age 2 all the way through older teens. Some ideas of items you could include: note from and photo of you and your family, toothbrush/paste, hair ribbons, small hand held electronic games, deflated soccer ball and pump, gum/candy/packaged cookies, crayons/ markers, matchbox cars, jump rope, nail polish, stickers, McDonalds happy meal toys, etc…. For the older students journal/pen, socks, deoderant, tie, in addition to some of the items listed above (nail polish, hair items, soccer ball/pump) would be good choices. Thank you all for your willingness to provide a Merry Christmas for the children in the community of Morne Oge!!

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Through the eyes of a September Trip member

 

We landed in Port au Prince and traveled approximately 4 hours to Jacmel. I had only been in Haiti a total of 8 hours upon my arrival and in this short amount of time, I was overwhelmed by the insurmountable poverty. I lay in bed that night thinking to myself……”only God can change this country”.

I awoke the next morning to participate in the first full day of planned activities, and by that evening, I saw plainly how God is going to change the country of Haiti. Here is how I saw it:

Our Mighty God chooses to reveal Himself in this world thru His faithful followers. As we serve our God, we become a “moving portrait” of His Love and His Grace. The people who participate in this organization are servants of God and they have the mind of Christ. They seek the good of others. This organization called “restorehaiti”……sees the BIG PICTURE…..they look away from themselves and choose to serve God for His Glory and His Purposes. Haiti may be a small country, but it has a gigantic need. Where does a person begin? It begins small, in the hearts of 2 people, willing to serve God. It continues to build, one heart at a time, until many hearts, (one heart from Haiti and one heart from abroad)……. join in the cause……to see Haiti restored, which in turn, glorifies The Living God.

This charity is building upon the Rock. On this foundation comes the practice of pure religion and the building up of family. The father is lovingly encouraged to “step up” in providing and participating in the family unit. Marriage is a blessing of God and is a requirement in order to live in one of restorehaiti’s wonderful homes. The family unit is strengthened and as a result, the community grows stronger. Education for the young is essential. This ministry is growing “leaders” for the country of Haiti. Thru these leaders, God will move to heal this impoverished country.

In closing: I saw God’s love given….. I saw God’s love received….. and I saw God’s love shared. It was an incredible life changing experience and I thank God for allowing me to see His Glory in the people of Haiti and in the people I served along side.
Patty Lahey (alias–mama Pat)

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Another great week

I just got back from another great week with some new friends from Kansas. A big highlight was the 2 families meeting and eating with their sponsor for the first time! Wow- no dry eyes that day- we will be working on 2013 trips so get saving!

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The Power Of The Holy Spirit

So many amazing things are happening while I’m here …. I’ve seen 2 houses finished , a kitchen for the feeding program that is nearly finished … God is truly blessing this community and it’s awesome to witness in the time that I have been here this summer …  Another highlight of my trip , I was sitting in the foyer at the house with Pastor and we were watching a Hillsong United DVD …. It got to a quiet part and he looked at me and said do you mind sharing the message tomorrow in church … At first I was shocked , because I had nothing written down or anything to go by … But the Holy Spirit immediately took over I said yes I would love to …. So that night I found myself staying up pretty late diving into scripture and finding the right words to say … I shared about the power of the Holy Spirit and what he has done in  my life , I gave some scriptures to go along with the examples given …. I then asked the congregation if they had anything that was tying them down and keeping them from experiencing the fullness and goodness of the father ,if they did I encouraged them to lay their burdens at the feet of Jesus and to be done with the junk that was attacking them ….. In closing I prayed over the congregation …. When I stepped off the stage I felt very charged up , I began to give God praise for what he had just done  You see I’ve always struggled with speaking in front of large groups , This message came out with “ease” … God is so good !!!! When I went to sit down Pastor said a few words and they began to play “Break Every Chain” by Jesus Culture …. I had my head down in continuous thankfulness for speaking through me …. As I looked up 3 men had come to the front of the church …. All 3 accepted Jesus on Sunday !!!!! Praise Jesus !!!  Really hard to believe that this trip is coming to an end but so overjoyed at what God has done on this trip , And super stoked that I got to be a vessel of encouragement to a few folks while I’ve been here ….  Until next time God Bless!!!!

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Meeting God

I’ve been back from Jacmel a little over a month now and my experience there is still very vivid in my mind and heart.  It is a place I will never forget and I cannot wait to return.  Since I’ve been back I’ve told countless numbers of friends and family about my trip and they only seem to ask about what I consider to be insignificant parts of the trip; my personal safety and concerns about what people do and don’t have.  Even in sharing my photos about the trip it didn’t seem like people were getting the gist of what I wanted them know about my trip and exactly what I experienced.  As I was looking back through my photos I realized that they were, obviously, from my view point but represented different encounters with God.  Some were pictures of kids, goats, cows, people, etc. and each is like a hug or a reminder from God that He is always present and in many forms.  While in Jacmel I’ve never felt safer and surrounded by people with such abundance.  The abundance of God, love and community was overwhelming.  The moment we landed in Port-au-Prince and I looked out at the mountains I knew I was surrounded by God.  Riding to Jacmel, I knew I was surrounded by God.  I saw God in everything in Jacmel.

 

As time goes on I’ve been trying to figure out how to describe the experience to others in a way to make them not focus on “lack” but the spirit of God that is present there.  It’s hard to explain an encounter with God and resting in His arms daily.  Ephesians 3:18-19 was my experience in Haiti, it happened but it is difficult to put into words.  It’s all of the feelings, the hugs, the words, the smiles, the kids calling out your name, the sounds and everything I saw…all of which I’ve found simply unexplainable.  It’s hard to explain Jean-Mary singing at the work site on a hot day to someone that wasn’t there or the kids that show up at the work site to help without being asked. I came to Jacmel hoping to make a difference in someone’s life and I suppose searching for something and what I found was that God was searching for me and He had to bring me to Jacmel to whisper in my ear and even use a child to remind me of His love for me and how He is constantly chasing after me even when I don’t always make myself available.  I could attempt to come up with a detailed account of my trip to Jacmel but this sums it up:

 

…to grasp how wide and how long and how high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge-that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. ~ Ephesians 3:18-19~

This was Jacmel.  I look forward to meeting God again.

And the presence of God which transcends ALL understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.  ~Philippians 4:7~

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4 days in! – Grady

So far this week had been just as amazing as the first if not more!! I was soooooo excited to come back and see all the friends I had made. On Saturday I started off by helping the Kansas team with their VBS which went very well. I saw a lot of kids I knew there from before which was really great. On Sunday we had church early and then had a restful day with a walk to the beach in the afternoon. Monday morning started us off with a lot of projects to work on. I took the lead on carrying buckets and wheelbarrows full of sand down the hill I am all to familiar with! It was a great day if work and the feeding program gave me that bonding time with the kids that I had missed! We also took most of the childrens shoe sizes to help the sponsors know what sizes to get. Today, Tuesday we all worked hard again and I got to help start the foundation to the new kitchen going in next to the church. And the feeding program was hectic, but good, as always! We continued collecting shoe sizes as well. Then we had the youth church service which was very powerful and moving as well! Still loving Haiti and can’t wait to see what happens.

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