HELP is a university scholarship program for Haiti’s best and brightest. In order to qualify for the program they must come from poor families and earn top grades in school. HELP pays all tuition and housing costs. Students pursue degrees in education, agronomy, economics, business, pharmacy, computer science, or engineering. In addition to their university class load, each HELP student must take leadership, English, and computer classes with HELP. When they graduate, HELP sets them up with a one year internship. Then when they find and begin their career, they give 10% of their income for 9 years to sustain the opportunity for future students.
Today we did our eye clinic at HELP. It’s a special experience because the HELP student help with the process in many different ways. This day we had extra translators for Creole speakers. HELP students wanted to practice their English with us and we wanted to practice our Creole with them.
We gave exams to 112 people and most of them received a pair of glasses. The pace of our exams was slower than yesterday, but today we visited more with each person and many of them were students with English proficiency so it was easy to visit a bit.
We enjoyed a wonderful lunch hosted by the HELP organization. We ate fried plantains, rice and beans, pork, and spicy coleslaw. I was in heaven! (I wish I could send a picture, but the internet connection is not strong enough for sending photos.)
Tomorrow morning we worship as a group at 8:00 and leave for Jacmel around 9:00. We should arrive in Jacmel around noon.
While in Jacmel we’ll have very limited access to Internet. So to give you the plan for Monday and Tuesday, we will have one day of eye clinic at Lekol Sen Trinite, a private school, and another day of eye clinic at Tetkole, a child advocacy organization. HTF supports both of these organizations and our family supports a student at Lekol Sen Trinite. Wednesday we travel from Jacmel to the Port-au-Prince airport and fly back home to Nebraska.
Bon je bene ou –Creole farewell meaning “Take care and God bless.”