Adding Hope to Layers of Complicated
The best way I know how to explain the work I do in Haiti is “layers of complicated”. Meaning, most solutions have multiple answers and some times you need to fix a handful of things to fix the first problem you intended to fix in the beginning.
Let me explain.
When we started our sewing school in Haiti in November 2007 our goal was simple. Keep mothers and children together so that children wouldn’t be raised in orphanages.
Step one: Give women an education, teaching them to read, write and sew. This would create the ability to provide for their families. When the first class graduated, we very quickly found that Haiti had little to offer in employment.
Step two: Find jobs for the graduates. We would create products (first purses) for visiting mission groups to purchase when they came to visit Haiti. We could create a small on site store for folks to purchase purses our ladies had made from donated fabric. This quickly grew into teams wanting to take out suitcases full of products to sell at home shopping parties. With the greater demand we could launch a website for on line sales.
Some of these layers had to do with the growth we experienced as our work expanded, which was great! The other kind of layer came from getting to know the ladies we work with and their life struggles. It also comes from learning the ebb and flow of the day to day unspoken challenges of poverty and dealing with life in a developing country such as Haiti.
I am still amazed at the things I learn on this journey of sustainability for women and children and the things I take for granted. Have you ever thought about your front door, and what life would look like if someone could just come and take off your front door? Let’s say, you rented your house and the Landlord came and said, he wanted more money and until he got more money he would take the front door. You couldn’t get to the police, they won’t help and you don’t have a contract; no one told you you needed one. You just paid him the money so you would have a place to live. Really, it is just a tiny cinderblock house with three rooms consisting of a tiny kitchen, a sitting area and a space for one bed shared by your whole family. You don’t have a husband, you have small children and you are alone every single night with no one to watch over you. Thieves come to steal and can do unthinkable things to you, or worse your children.
But, what if the door to the house was your door because the house was your house? Now that would be a whole different matter.
Yes, this is the next layer to wanting mothers and children to stay together.
They need a place they can call home, a place they are safe, a place they can lay their heads at night in peace. A place they can lock the door.
Everyone, I would like for you to meet Vadette. She graduated from our first sewing school in 2008 and has worked for us as a seamstress for the past seven years. She has always had the goal of having her own house.
While in Haiti at the end of October this year, I learned that her teenage daughter had experienced some of those unspeakable things I mentioned. As I sat in the office at CrossFields, I shared my heart with the team, telling them I felt like I was to return to the work I had been doing in Haiti for this very reason. There was still work that needed to be done and our ladies still needed help, but this time in a different way.
After some time had passed we talked about what would it look like to help the ladies in Haiti, in the sewing program to be safe? These conversations, some brainstorming and prayer led us to this…….
We are thrilled to partner with CrossFields to help Vedette complete her very own home. After all of her hard work over the years and many, many prays for a way to build her house she is going to be able to do just that, finish building her own house. Yes, and lock her door too!
Construction will begin in January.
I can't wait to tell Vedette her dream is really coming true!
I will travel to Haiti to help her coordinate the construction process that needs to being.
We can't wait to show you picture of the progress we make over the next few months.
Please continue to follow along with us here on the blog for updates.
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If you would like to support the work Vadette and the other Artisans are doing in Haiti you can shop and/or follow them at Haiti Design Coop
If you to know of a company or family who would like to partner with the Artisans in Haiti to help build their own house just like Vedette, please contact us and we will be happy to answer any of your questions.
Please note, mark all funds "Haiti Christmas Home" so we will know how we should apply your support for the work we are currently doing in Haiti.
Much Love to you and your families in this Christmas season!
The Lynch Family
The Lynch Family