By this time next week, my plan is to have given two 5-day trainings; trained over 40 teacher-trainers, community animators, and agronomists from three organisations and five sites; and coached three teams on their projects using permaculture design. It's been a full few weeks.
What stands out for me in these last two weeks in Haiti is the people. I'm reminded that, in any life circumstance, we have choice in how we live and how we meet the world. Dr. Viktor Frankl, a psychiatrist who survived the Holocaust, wrote about how people found freedom, choice and meaning even in the concentration camps. He wrote about men in the camps who walked around comforting others and gave away their last pieces of bread. I've met people like this here; to me they are everyday heros.
I had expected that the language difference (me speaking French and not Creole) would be a challenge for me in giving trainings and facilitating groups here. I accepted that this would be a learning edge for me, which would push me to find new and creative ways to facilitate people's learning process.
I have deep gratitude in my heart to all of you for supporting me with my initiative in Haiti and for helping to make this possible through your donations, helping to spread the word, and sending positive energy. As I prepare for this trip, I have a sense of being in touch with the oneness of our humanity.
My first trip to Haiti last May was a journey of stark contrasts; the best I could do was breathe deeply, and bring my heart and mind fully to the work at hand. I am noticing the contrasts again today. We've raised over $8300 for my volunteer projects in Haiti (as of January 28). I am in awe that we're $3000 over my original fundraising goal and that support has continued to flow. And, as I read about Haiti tonight, I realise the enormity and scale of transformation that is needed. In the same breath, I am present with my gratitude and my sorrow.
We've raised over $4000 - getting close to the goal of $5300! I'm so grateful for all the support :) (A number of donations came by cheque and Interac, and unfortunately, they don't show up in the red box.)
DONATIONS & TAX RECEIPTS
If you would like to make a donation, any amount is appreciated.
WHAT I PLAN TO DO IN HAITI
I plan on going back to Haiti for 5 weeks in January and volunteering with two organisations, AMURT in Port-au-Prince and Noramise in the North; I am fundraising to make this work possible. At the heart of this, is my desire to support the rebuilding of Haiti, based on a vision of sustainable development that takes care of people and the land.
When looking at photos of the oil spill in the Gulf, I felt flooded with despair, sadness and hopelessness; the well-being of the Earth, the water, the people and animals are so deeply precious to me. When I consider the quantity of oil pouring out, I fear sometimes that the gulf between our actions and what we value is too wide. Yet today, connecting continually with the Earth, I feel more peaceful, calm, trusting.
Deep breath... Changing cycles, changing flows... On Wednesday, at another camp, we TRANSFORMED A SMALL PATCH OF MOUNTAINSIDE COVERED IN GARBAGE INTO A COMPOST AND VEGETABLE GARDEN IN ABOUT THREE HOURS. We were about 20-30 people. MANY HANDS MAKE LIGHT WORK!