I had an excellent ending to an exciting trip. As portrayed in the news, there was rioting and protests shaking the nation but I am home safe now and I am thankful for some of the comforts here. These luxuries are easy to identify when positioned right against some of the realities of the rough border life. As I reflect back on my exertions and realizations I want to report how there is a great advancement brewing in our two frontier communities by way of collaboration and communication that has been absent for a few generations. Within Haitian communities, there has been great hesitation to show interest in another’s well being because, in the past, it has not only gone uncelebrated but punished sometimes by death and if not that then always by threat of death. To step away from this culture is not an easy change but, in our communities it is now starting to become an option. Through mentoring our local leader Simeon, we have started a community alliance on the Haitian side of the border and it is already using accountability for attendance to their service projects and brainstorming sessions. The meetings on the Dominican side of the border are less organized however the refugees are clamoring for support and direction in this vein. In these community meetings local leaders are teaching principles as the answer to their societal woes; including life threatening hunger that is leading to sex trafficking and labor trafficking of youth which market is destroying the fabric of society here. The principle of focus for now is to treat your neighbor as you would like to be treated and this is engendering mutual respect. It feels so good, the people are drawn to it instinctively. We are laying foundational community cornerstones. It will not take long to have this excitement take over this town and surrounding areas. With your awareness and help, we are continuing to help shape and coach our leading women and men of these communities to demand their dignity and value back. We are nimble and can add all kinds of innovative concepts to our model. Please offer your suggestions if you have them and help lift our sisters and brothers stem off the flow of child exploitation and trafficking. Thank you for your support.
Originally Posted October 22, 2019