Thursday, June 30, 2016

Another Side of Haiti

OK, what comes to mind when you think of HAITI?

Earthquakes? Poverty? Poorest country in the Western Hemisphere?  Yes, yes, and yes.  

ut here's a well-kept secret: Haiti also has tropical weather and lovely people and spectacular, uncrowded, sandy beaches. Don't take my word for it: take a look yourself....

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Teeming with Life

I love this picture taken recently by MBB's Country Director in Haiti, Elisa Divoux.  Why? Because it speaks to me of the LIFE teeming just below the surface in Haiti. Sure, there are plenty of fish in Haiti's clear blue Caribbean waters. But there is also a wealth of talent and ingenuity and resilience in the hearts of the people of Haiti. They struggle with the effects of deforestation and erosion, poor government, schools so expensive that most families cannot afford education, and a dismal lack of paid employment opportunities. Despite all this, they never give up. We could learn a lot from them....

Thursday, June 16, 2016

What's STRANGE about this Picture?

To the casual observer, there is nothing strange about this picture. It's merely a girl tutoring a boy.
But wait! This girl and this boy are both in South Sudan, where males rule and females are worthless. Where boys go to school while girls stay at home. Where men always have the upper hand, treating women as if they have no rights.

Given that context, this is indeed a strange and wondrous picture.  It shows a confident, well-educated girl helping a teen boy to figure out his homework.  It shows Vionzy, an MBB Scholar demonstrating our shared value of compassionate action by volunteering in her local school during her own vacation time from university.  It's a dramatic cultural shift happening right before our eyes!  And it's being made possible by donors to MBB. Thank you!

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Trendy? No. Reliable? Yes!

Much as everyone wants "the latest" in transportation (I myself can hardly wait for Google's self-driving cars), there is something to be said for the solid, steady, uncomplaining service of a donkey. 

In rural northern Haiti, to be sure, cars cannot get up and down the steep mountains and ravines, and only the foolhardy go by moto (motorcycle) on the slippery gravel trails. But rain or shine, morning, noon and night, you will see Haiti's donkeys plodding slowly along, heavily burdened like their owners.  

They may not be trendy but they get the job done!

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Which One are You?

Girls love being at St Bakhita Primary School for many reasons:

1.  It's a safe place where they are treated as human beings and saved from early marriage.
2.  The teachers recognize their abilities and help them to develop their gifts.
3.  Besides the regular curriculum, the school offers ART and SPORTS and COMPUTERS, activities that girls in South Sudan would otherwise never have the opportunity to engage in!

Here are the clay masks the girls created to express basic emotions. Which one speaks to you?