I made the five-hour bus ride from Port au Prince to the Azua province in the Dominican Republic so I could meet Sister Josefina Acevedo Marmolejos and the girls in her care. Sister Josefina is a member of the Carmelite Sisters of the Teresas of Saint Joseph and the director of the Hogar Teresa Toda, a residence for girls and a refuge from extreme poverty or an unsafe home environment. When you choose to sponsor a child through CARITAS’ Dominican child sponsorship programs, you are giving a girl, living at the Hogar, the chance for a better life and an education.
This was the first time I’ve ever been this far north in Haiti. I accompanied Felix Joseph, CARITAS’ Location Coordinator for the Haiti child sponsorship programs, to visit the schools at Rivière Mancelle and Bassin Bleu. It was a bit of an adventure.
“I would hope that the sponsors know they’re doing an important job. They are doing the work of Christ,” said Sister Marie Délivrine Lops – Secretary of Education of the Little Sisters of St. Thérèse of the Child Jesus, CARITAS For Children’s ministry partners in Haiti. Farron Horton, who is working for CARITAS’ Haitian child sponsorship programs in the position of Volunteer Mission Liaison, recently had a conversation with Sister Lops and had asked her what she hoped sponsors gain when they choose to sponsor a child. Their discussion follows in a question and answer format.
Toothpaste, check! Medicines, check! Fun games, check! This is how my preparation for my mission trip to Haiti has been. I am an early packer, as I like to be prepared. Because of this, I have been running around making sure I have enough items to last me for five months working for CARITAS' Haiti child sponsorship programs.
Farron Horton spent a week in Haiti during the Easter week to familiarize herself with CARITAS For Children's Haitian child sponsorship programs in anticipation of working there full-time beginning the summer of 2016.
Haiti, Haiti, Haiti. It is definitely a unique Caribbean country compared to all the others. However, I'm not really sure of the ways it's unique to me. All I know is that each time I am there, I automatically get a sense that I am home.