Posted on April 30, 2014
Posted on April 30, 2014
Without the help of our volunteers, our mission would be stifled. We had 11 volunteers arrive on April 4th and stayed through April 10th.
At one of the construction sites in Tabarre, Haiti, our contractor, Jimmy DeGraffenried, felt most useful as he trained the laborers on appropriately laying out the foundation for a home. He said that the men needed to look at “the bigger picture” and then work their way towards the different dimensions of the rooms. From there, he and the Chief Engineer of Kay Vision Group were able to successfully help the men trace the land and dig for the foundation pour.
The remaining ten volunteers were a mix of young adults in high school to working professionals with families. They all brought so many talents and gifts to share that poured over to the children of Foyer de Sion. They planned and organized a pool party, easter egg hunt, arts and crafts, and overall quality time spent with both the toddlers and youth. As a service project to the orphanage, the volunteers were able to re-paint a classroom used for activities for the toddlers. The volunteers did have an opportunity to visit two jobsites where they were able to interact with workers and even give them a hand with organizing construction material.
Part of the experience is observing Haiti from “the back of a truck.” Haiti is a new experience for most people and people need to see what the country is like for themselves. It is both raw and organic as Shae Goodwin explains it in our volunteer video. We were able to take volunteers around Croix de Bouquets to the metal art village and Champs Mars, which is around downtown Port-au-Prince. They were able to observe daily life and purchase handcrafted keepsakes from street vendors. They were also able to end the week with a drive up north to Saint Marc area, Côte des Arcadians, where there is a strip of beaches with white sand and beautiful ocean for miles.
As stated in the beginning, these trips cannot happen without volunteers. Please continue to refer people who are interested in attending one of our trips and use the electronic form on the volunteer section. We will be posting trips dates to our website in the upcoming weeks.
Posted on October 1, 2013
Hello all, its been awhile. That’s because we have some exciting news that we will share in the upcoming month. Stayed Tuned….
We did have a great board meeting here in Haiti during the week of September 14th-23rd. We are working to organize ourselves into a non-profit organization and were working on necessary paperwork. It is still a work in progress. We were also able to visit a guesthouse by America World Adoption Agency, during that same week, that they have agreed to let us use. It will be a great option for volunteers to stay when traveling to Haiti. We will be soon updating our website and provide additional details.
Through the great efforts of our Board Member Shae Goodwin, we have our second group coming down in December. Dates will be finalized and tickets purchased in the upcoming weeks. There will be a general contractor coming down who will focus the trade training on finishing work and other needs as they come.
We are so excited and hope you will stay tuned for updates, pictures, and everything else going on with the organization. We will continue to be organizing trips next year, so please refer anyone who is interested.
Posted on May 31, 2013
These past couple of weeks has come and gone so fast. For a quick preface, we had our friends Shae Goodwin, her son Tom, Colette Worthington and her daughter Kyla all arrive safely on May 11th. They came to support us in the construction effort as professional photographers and videographers, hands on help as sand sifters and anything that needed to be done at the jobsite, they did. And served so well. It’s always so refreshing when people are so willing to give of their time and energy and willingness to serve others. The workers got a kick out of the women jumping right in to help sift sand!
On Tuesday, May 14th, our friend Keith and Joel Johnson arrived. They are both plumbers by trade, with experience in tiling, sheetrock and other various skills in the construction industry. During this trip we were able to use their experience in tiling and taught the crew how to tile. It was hard to track down some of the needed tile during the week because of unavailability. By Friday, we were stocked and ready to work. (Check out the photo gallery and we will be adding more photos.)
I (Mimose) was able to help translate a bit on Monday May 20th and it was great to see how the construction workers were working together. Most had other duties and we were working with a group of about 4 for tiling (more were trained on the Friday and Saturday previous). One of the workers named Carlo asked Keith and Joel what the principle was behind knowing how to tile and he learned about the 3, 4, 5 rule that day. Preparation and planning before setting the tile is key and the 3, 4, 5 rule helped to make sure everything was even at the start so that the tile around it would all be set according to the measurements of the room. I am pretty sure that Carlo and the other men will not forget about this because everything started falling into place after the floor was measured. They saw the tile being set on the floor and began setting it themselves.
During a meeting with everyone, Leo said it best when he told everyone that the experienced tradesmen that travel to Haiti to train his workers was only the beginning. His hope is that they will increase in their skills and talents and be able to find better work, start their own companies and help others around them learn skills and trades as well. His hope is not to keep them for his benefit but for them to grow in their capacities and move onto something better.
This is the kind of training these Haitian men and women need. To be able to ask questions, to work hands on and learn trades. The work is not done yet… Some of our next steps include working on making Haiti Construction Trade Trip a non-profit organization. We still need help on-site and are looking for additional volunteers. Currently, we are seeking masons, drywallers, and electricians. We will make use of other construction skills as well. Please continue to spread the word and share our website with others. Get us more volunteers!
Posted on May 10, 2013
And three weeks has flown by…. The anticipation has been building up and now the time is just around the corner. Feelings??? Ecstatic!!! Both at the job site and at the Kay Vision Group office/home, preparation has been going on to prepare for our first round of volunteers. Our professional photographers and videographers will arrive first on Saturday to set the stage…
The skilled plumber and mason, who also have skills in tile work and sheetrock arrive the fly on the 13th and arrive to Haiti on the 14th.
We hope that people will continue to follow our story and continue to spread the word. We will definitely be posting pictures and writing some great feeds in the upcoming week. Continue to follow our story and share the message. Get us more volunteers!
Posted on April 23, 2013
Its hard to explain the excitement around the upcoming trip in May. We have been talking to Kay Vision Group employees as well as some other individuals in the Port-au-Prince/Petion-ville area who are interested in the training and all they can say is, “When are the trainers coming!?!?” We have a professional plumber/tile setter/drywall and a professional mason who are coming from Utah on May 13th!
We also have our friends from Shae Goodwin and Associates coming out on May 11th to do some professional photography for this first group and we couldn’t be more happy with their love and support.
PLEASE continue to spread the work about the Haiti Construction Trade Trip. We are just beginning and need the support of everyone to help us keep going after this first group. Share the message, sponsor someone to come or express interest if you yourself have some skills to bring.