Thursday, January 21, 2010

Haiti on My Heart

Did you know before the earthquake last Tuesday that Haiti was already considered one of the world's poorest countries?
Did you know before the earthquake last Tuesday that over 380,000 children lived in orphanages or group homes in Haiti?
Did you know that since the earthquake last Tuesday tens of thousands of children have been orphaned? Source
Did you know it is statistics like this that make for the perfect breeding of evil?

I'm talking about human trafficking, also known as slavery. Children who have lost everything and everyone that they know, will be taken under the wing of someone who pretends to "care" and be sold. Did you know this was happening? It's oh so very real and sad, as I type this tears are streaming down my face at the thought of the atrocities that some of these children will endure. That their innocence will be stolen, that the child like twinkle in their eye will be snuffed out. Source

It hurts my heart to think this topic is taboo or too hard to deal with, that in this article, the idea is given one sentence near the bottom.
"Meanwhile, U.N. humanitarian chief John Holmes said the United Nations is establishing a group on the ground in Haiti to protect children — orphans and non-orphans alike — against trafficking, kidnapping and sex abuse."
 I'm not sure when Mr. Holmes said this, but the article was written two days ago, it's hard to say how many children have already slipped through the cracks.

What can I do? I feel helpless to assist just to read the number tens of thousands makes me feel defeated before I even start.  To start I am shining my light into the darkness
I understand the desperate need to give to the humanitarian relief in Haiti, but there is also a need to donate to the agencies that will protect these sweet, newly orphaned, scared children. Here are a few of the organizations that can help –  
PADF – Pan American Development Foundation
Planting Peace – Referenced in one of the above articles operates orphanages in Haiti
Christian Life Foundation – Also mentioned in one of the referenced articles
Thou times are tight for us, as they are for many people Jon and I will be donating to at least one of these agencies and maybe all of them. We are both heartbroken for all the people in Haiti who are experiencing immeasurable loss, but our biggest concern is for the children. We have had several discussions about doing more, but right now traveling to help is out of the question. So we will do what we can, as I finished this post I was reminded of The Starfish Story…
Once upon a time, there was a wise man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach before he began his work. One day, as he was walking along the shore, he looked down the beach and saw a human figure moving like a dancer. He smiled to himself at the thought of someone who would dance to the day, and so, he walked faster to catch up. As he got closer, he noticed that the figure was that of a young man, and that what he was doing was not dancing at all. The young man was reaching down to the shore, picking up small objects, and throwing them into the ocean.
He came closer still and called out "Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?"
The young man paused, looked up, and replied "Throwing starfish into the ocean."
"I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?" asked the somewhat startled wise man.
To this, the young man replied, "The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don't throw them in, they'll die."
Upon hearing this, the wise man commented, "But, young man, do you not realize that there are miles and miles of beach and there are starfish all along every mile? You can't possibly make a difference!"
At this, the young man bent down, picked up yet another starfish, and threw it into the ocean. As it met the water, he said, "I made a difference to that one!"

by Loren Eiseley Source
If you feel called to give please do so, if you feel called to more please e-mail one of the agencies above to see how you can help further, and if not please pray for the protection of these children. You can make a difference, even if it is just for one.

1 comment:

Arizona Mamma said...

So overwhelming. Leaves me without much to say. But God bless you for trying to do something.