Darline stands at the helm of MBB in HAITI. She heads our Scholarship Program and our annual Leadership Training Week and she supervises the House Mother at our Scholars' Lodge as well as the instructor for our daily computer classes.
As our programs in Haiti grow, Darline is learning new skills and discovering new resources within herself. She is fluent in Kreyol and French and is studying English. She is a good role model for the young women MBB works with. We are happy to have her heading our Haiti team!
Do you see that smile on Sr Edvine's face? She is the MBB Scholarships Coordinator in South Sudan. A tough job that requires traveling around the country on dangerous roads, visiting all the schools where the MBB Scholars are studying. No job description could cover all that she faces in the course of any "typical" week. At times, she's had to push her stuck vehicle out of a sandy wadi, swelter through temps as high as 120 F, wait hours at immigration border crossings, take feverish Scholars to remote clinics, counsel girls whose parents have just died, cope with recurring bouts of malaria herself.
And yet she smiles! Edvine loves her job, loves the fact that her work enables more and more girls in S. Sudan to move on to higher education, loves the satisfaction of seeing them succeed, loves being part of the MBB team, and loves the challenge of growing the program to enroll more and more young women. We salute you, Edvine!
Jeanine, shown here with one of her daughters, knows a thing or two about being a mother. She is strong, wise, caring, and strict: all the qualities needed to manage a girls' boarding house! She is the HEART of the Scholars' Lodge that Mercy Beyond Borders operates in Gros Morne, HAITI. She runs a tight ship with a loving hand. She has organized the 22 resident Scholars (7th, 8th and 9th graders) into teams for keeping the house sparkly-clean and maintaining a safe and attractive environment that fosters their studies. Being our MBB House Manager brings to the fore her many skills: thrifty buyer, excellent cook, marvelous supervisor, calm negotiator of teen angst (and hormones), and steady promoter of girls' education.
But Jeanine is, first and foremost, a mother. I ask those of you who have parented teens in your own home: CAN YOU IMAGINE PARENTING 22 TEEN GIRLS AT ONCE? Jeanine makes it look almost easy! Frankly, we are a bit in awe of Jeanine, and we thank her for her important work with MBB in Haiti.
What does it take for a woman in South Sudan to start a business of her own? A dream, determination to beat the odds, lots of hard work, an infusion of cash (well, actually, a loan) from Mercy Beyond Borders, and a boost of training and encouragement from Bro.Emmanuel. He has long been dedicated to promoting the advancement of women and girls in S.Sudan, initially as bursar at St Bakhita Primary School, and now--after obtaining a master's degree in Finance Administration--as the Coordinator of MBB's Micro-Enterprise Programs in S. Sudan (not to mention: he's also our tech guru extraordinaire). Besides all his expertise, Emmanuel has a wonderfully positive outlook on life, with a quick laugh that lifts spirits wherever he is. MBB feels lucky to have him on our team!