Hello everyone, this is Norm and Brad. We had the opportunity to go into the area hardest hit by Hurricane Matthew. We traveled approximately 3 hours west of Haiti Arise to a community called Saint Helene. It was a beautiful, small, fertile valley with farmland down below and housing higher up the mountains. We had the experience to work along over 30 Haitians. Our first day we helped rebuild the Pastor's roof. At the Pastor's house, we were fed our meals. Materials to be used in the construction of the houses in the community were stored in the Pastor's yard. There were so many people in that location, we didn't know which on was actually the Pastor until the third day. He had graciously given his yard to be used by Haiti Arise projects. We prefabbed wall sections and roof rafters at the yard and then transported them in trucks to the house sites. The metal for the roof and walls was unloaded at the road and then had to be carried by hand up some rather steep hills... a long distance. We were working with two ladies from The Link Medicine Hat Team (Kearstin and Stacey) who showed us how to carry houses. When we arrived on site, the concrete and block work had already been completed by a Haitian team. Working with a Haitian team of carpenters, we assembled the walls and rafters and covered the roof and upper four feet of the wall with tin. Working with the Haitian guys was a lot of fun. To avoid being called "you", we had to introduce ourselves and then ask there names. (In Haiti, people tend to yell "you, you, you" at us to get our attention). In the three days we were there, four houses were completed and the Pastor's house roof job was completed and we also prefabbed wall sections for another four houses. It was gratifying to see the reaction of the people who were receiving the houses while they were being built. We heard from Kearstin and Stacey that one couple kissed in the doorway of their new house after it was completed. We stopped at one of the four completed houses and the owner was sleeping on the dirt floor with his machete beside him which we found was used for many different things in the construction business - including cutting metal. Meals were great... but there were no showers. The travel home was interesting, as it always is in Haiti. Lots of speed, horn blowing, and not enough room. We would really like to go back to that area again. 

 

Completed house

Completed house

View of the truck from the house. Four people including Norm and I carried all the supplies from the truck below to the house pictured.

View of the truck from the house. Four people including Norm and I carried all the supplies from the truck below to the house pictured.

house under construction and look at that view!

house under construction and look at that view!

farmers at work plowing their field. Picture taken from the roof of the pastors house.

farmers at work plowing their field. Picture taken from the roof of the pastors house.

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