2018 has kept us busy with construction of the Community Center! We are grateful for the opportunity to provide jobs for over 50 local laborers during the development of center. One of the greatest joys has been three Youth Work Days, in which the young adult group at Eglise Evangelique de la Grande Commission worked to paint and beautify the Community Center, earning fair wages as well as funds for youth activities and mission trips. Thanks to the support of generous donors, the building is now complete and was opened to our community in June 2018!
Library and 1st Intern!
We were thrilled to host our first ever summer intern, who helped launch the Leve Kanpe library in June! Daily, we held English as a Second Language Classes and community story times for children of all ages. Additionally, a new English/Creole early reader book was written and illustrated by the intern and our daughter Julianna. It was a great privilege to grow relationships with the many children who came to the community center library every day!
Caring for the physical needs of our community remains a passion for our ministry, and we consider it a door to the Gospel. From focused efforts to identify and care for children suffering from malnutrition to tending to the medical needs to people who knock on our gate every day, we have had the privilege of caring for 2,500 patients this year. The Wellness Center and Nutrition program were launched in September, and we expect great growth in these ministries in the coming year.
Job creation & Business
Opportunities continue to arise for business development. The OneEgg farm is nearly sustainable despite difficult challenges, and five full time employees are working hard to care for the 7,500 chickens who provide thousands of eggs daily. Jeremy continues to provide sustainable business consulting for Taino Aqua Ferme, the largest tilapia farm in Haiti, and Farmer John's Butcher shop.
Additionally, in partnership with JoyHouse coffee company, we have been able to employ several workers to create artisan items for sale in the newly opened coffee shops in Northwest Arkansas.
One of our greatest joys is the privilege of collaborating with other ministries in our community. There is much work to be one, more than any one ministry can do alone. But together, we can reach farther. This year, we are thankful to partner with Kay Timoun, a local ministry who is effectively battling malnutrition. They are working to launch a home chicken coop program to help mothers have access to valuable protein-providing eggs daily. Jeremy has helped develop the prototype of a home coop, as well as strategic planning for feed, egg collection, and management. Additionally, Katie has had the joy of partnering with several organizations, near and far, to train leaders in the Awana curriculum. With their combined efforts, more than 1,500 children are hearing the Gospel weekly through Awana clubs. Finally, our daughter Julie, is now serving as the OneEgg Haiti correspondent, and shares stories with the world how OneEgg is impacting our community for the better. She is pictured here with Sally Todd, the founder of Kay Timoun, after interviewing her about her egg distribution efforts.
Here's the really real: life on the mission field can sometimes get lonely. Missing family and friends is a constant topic of conversation. However, we are BEYOND grateful that God has always provided a community of believers for us, no matter where we live. God has been faithful to us in Haiti as well, and has provided some beautiful friendships. What a joy it is to share life with like-minded fellow missionaries as we all work together to grow the Kingdom of God!