Project 90 is a group of students from the University of Calgary, who run hands-on design projects in partnerships with local non-profits to benefit projects locally and abroad. In 2016, Project90 partnered with Engineering Ministries International (EMI) to help design an administration building for the north Haiti Arise campus. This trip was a continuation of that project where we have had the opportunity to see the work that Haiti Arise is doing in Haiti.
Over the past 2 weeks our team has been able to see a variety of Haiti Arise’ ministries and participate in some meaningful work. Our main project was teaching a 16-hour AutoCAD class to the Building and Construction students at the Technical College and setting up the school to continue this training for future classes. AutoCAD is a drafting and design software that can be used to create construction and engineering plans. The workshop went incredibly well, the students were attentive and grateful for the opportunity to access and learn this software; and our team was happy to be able to provide these students with something that could help the careers in the future.
Our team was also able to participate in the construction of the new auto body shop as well as tile and paint one of the duplexes in the Children’s Village. Our team definitely has a new respect for the Haitian people who do this kind of work in the heat every day.
Our team also had the opportunity to prepare and distribute 1,300 bags of rice and 900 bags of beans, spaghetti and oil to Haitians in Grand Goâve. It was humbling to see the generosity and gratefulness of the Haitian people.
Lastly, we were able to learn about Haiti Arise’ Judicial Assistance program and the delays prisoners face in having their cases heard by a judge. We had the chance to talk to the lawyers who are providing legal representation for prisoner, giving them the chance to stand trial.
As we settle back into our lives back in Canada, we are taking away a lesson about perseverance. Even though Haiti is still in a state of turmoil and struggle, the joy of the kids during recess, the attentiveness of the college students, the gratefulness the adults receiving bags of food, determination of the lawyers, is what has impacted us on this trip. Haiti is a beautiful country, full of beautiful people, and we feel so thankful for the chance to work along side people who are fighting so hard to get back onto their feet.