Sunday, January 31, 2010


I'm a news junkie when I'm back in the states I hate to miss my 6:30 newscasts. Here in in Haiti I don't own a TV and can't waste my valuable time checking news on my computer. I have though caught a few CNN newscasts the last few weeks . It sometimes seems the news people thrive on sensationalizing disasters, misery and portraying good people in unfavorable ways. Then there is all those movie stars, so called experts and high officials they like to interview. If they could just take their cameras to some of the places and talk with some of the people I know, what a story they would have. If I was to start a news network I might call it Christian Newsworthy Notes, a different CNN.

I have a friend called Jasmine he works for my GAP Ministry's "Feet Across the Mountains" outreach. In Nov. I gave him an outline of an idea I had to start a Haitian youth organization. I gave him the name I wanted to use and a plan as to how I wanted to develop it and grow it across Haiti city to city. The name I chose was Association of Christian Youth International Missions or ACY-IM . In 2 short months Jasmine has jump started our organization into action to aid quake victims, Haitians helping Haitians.

He quickly recruited 80 young men and women in Montrouis, to solicit help by going door to door, making large banners and t shirts requesting that everyone give something. Such items as extra shirts, pants, shoes, towels blankets were given. He went to missionaries asking they contribute money for food. He arranged a truck to transport homeless people to Montrouis. He lined up two schools to house people in. This is the story of how Jasmine always works , tirelessly for the Lord. When wetalked back in Nov. and the idea of ACY- IM the guidelines I gave him was it was to lead young people top the Lord. It was to have three focal points Evangelism, Discipleship and Community Service I believe we have gotten off to a great start in accomplishing our desired goal. It the kind of CNN news we all need to hear about more often, Christian Newsworthy Notes of common people ordinary people making a difference. In God's love, steve


The medical ministry at Pierre Payen has been a well respected outreach of Project Help-Haiti since the mid 1970's. In 2001 we built a new surgical hospital across the street from our 25 year old clinic buildings. Dr. Vic Binkley one of those most responsible for developing and sustaining our work here over the last 35 years was instrumental in designing and getting our hospital built. Vic has not been able to be here with us during these last 7 months as he has valiantly waged his own medical battle with pancreatic cancer. Though still fighting for his own life Vic and Donna wanted to make a trip down here to see how well we are doing in helping with the medical relief efforts. They also want to help us in developing a pernment orthopedic surgery wing here at the hospital. Getting into Haiti is not very easy and Vic's health complicates things even more but through the generosity of a donated corporate jet they should be landing Monday evening or possibibly Tuesday. All of us who have known Vic and worked with him here in Haiti are looking forward to seeing him here at the Pierre Payen Medical compound once again. Please read the blog post about A MOTHERS LOVE that I mistakenly posted on my other blog site at In God's love, steve

Friday, January 29, 2010


It is fair to say no one was spared from the affects of the earthquake that shook Haiti Jan. 12th. Everyone knows someone a friend or family member who was killed. People have been displaced from their homes have fled Port au Prince for refugee camps or to move in with relatives in the countryside or into other cities across Haiti. People who had jobs in Port are now mostly unemployeed because of the near total destruction of so many areas of the city. Nearly 3/4 of all government buildings were destroyed or damaged causing any dealings with government agenciesare on hold. The airport is shut down to all commercial flights till Feb. 19th or beyond. The terminal has sustained major damage that in my mind would not allow people to be inside anytime soon.

Here at Project Help-Haiti we consider ourselves pretty lucky. My team and and I were standing on the second story balcony of a Port au Prince guesthouse when the quake brought the capital city down upon it's inhabitants. After seeing so many other similar structures demolished to a heap of masonry and steel rebar we shake our heads in wonder to how we were spared.

Project Help-Haiti has 30 churches in Haiti one of which is located in a suburb of Port called Bon Repos. This was our only facilility in all of Haiti to sustain damage. Even though the building also serves as a school no one was inside at the time that it was completely destroyed . On Thursday we delivered a truck full of food and water to the people living under tarps surrounding the Church .Project Help will be looking at how to assist in the building of this church sometime this year.

Thursday, January 21, 2010


Though much of my attention has been directed to the medical ministry at Pierre Payen this past week we also have a work team up at Borel. The team arrived on the day of the quake so this will always be a memorable mission trip for them. This team came down with the intention to put the tree tiered roof on the Gazebo here at the Borel compound. Though it has a complicated roof truss they did a really great job and it looks great. Other projects they have tackled is replacing the old kitchen drain system that continually plugged up with roots with an enclosed 4 inch pvc pipe. We are installing a second small generator just for the guest and mission houses. This required doing some new wiring and another transfer switch. The old butcher house is being remolded and enlarged as the new team work shop and also will house the smaller generator. Several of the houses needed screen repair and some replacement. Future teams will continue with putting trusses on the shop and putting on the metal roofing ,we also have two mission houses that need attention and are scheduled to be remolded as time and teams permit. The Pierre Payen compound which has seen little use the last 7 years is seeing lots of use with our medical teams and we also need to address some maintenance issues there yet this year. Even though we have had some teams postpone their intended arrival dates till later , we hope to get our schedules readjusted soon and get them here to help out with not only these projects but those we will be doing out in the communities where we have churches and schools.


What a hectic week but one that certainly shows the generosity and willingness of humanity as God envisioned. Last Saturday our first medical quake assistance team landed in port with 5 doctors and a pallet load of medical supplies. Their way into the country was provide through the donation of the use of a privately owned corporate jet out of Ft. Worth , Texas. The logistical planning and recruiting of these medical teams originated through my wonderful friends Drs. Ric and Wendy Bonnell who live outside Ft. Worth , Texas. Once we got the OK to pass through the 82nd airborne security at the Airport and drive out on the tamarack to load we hit the road for the 60 mile ride to Pierre Payen and the Project Help medical facilities. The doctors wasted no time in getting started and after making an assessment of the patients needs set to work on treating them. That night the police also dropped off 2 people involved in a car accident ,one was dead on arrival the other was treated and saved . As the week has progressed and the word has gotten out we have seen a steady increase of patients. Yesterday morning an eleven year old girl an other accident victim after being stabilized was airlifted to Miami by private jet to treat her crushed pelvis. I received word she is doing much better and should recover. This Saturday 3 member of Medical Team 1 will fly out on on the plane that brings in Medical Team 2 . Dr. Ric and Reanne a trauma nurse will stay behind to work with the new team. Team 2 is an orthopedic team which is in great demand as you might imagine and I'm sure we will see another busy week. As of now we several more medical teams in the works maybe as far as into Feb. 13th. I feel the need will be just as great when all he media attention goes away and thousands of new amputees and those recovering from surgeries try to adapt and get adjusted to their quake injuries. Anyway for all of you who have written me and lifted us up in prayer , thank you. In God's love , steve

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


I'm still shaking my head and wondering why this would happen. Just when it seemed things were turning around for Haiti and the future was seeming to look up for this country I love , then there was yesterday!! What was God thinking ? Doesn't He remember we are still getting over all the damage from the summer of 2008 when we were hit with 3 monstrous hurricanes that pounded the mountains of Haiti unleashing devastating floods that killed hundreds? Wasn't there enough homeless orphans , enough parents with children swept away in the muddy waters, enough homeless families and enough hungry people? Then there was yesterday, what was God thinking !! What about that nice highway that is being built to link Port au Prince with Cap Haitein and all those nice buildings going up in and around the port city? Then there was yesterday, what was God thinking!! Doesn't he know that these people want something better than always being knocked down and having to start again the next day? Subsistence living has been a way of life here for generations finding food, water, health, a place to stay is the way each day goes one after the other never changing always the same. Yet the spirit was changing, then there was yesterday!! People were looking for a better tomorrow, what was God thinking?

Yesterday was the worst disaster I have seen in my ten years here in Haiti. An earthquake at over 7.3 Richter scale hitting a populated area of over 3 million right at the busiest time of the day, the evening rush hour. Even though my arriving team and I were put right in the middle of it at just a few minutes till 5:00pm it was not till this afternoon after finally getting out of port that we can see on the news what happened. Yesterday started like any other day that I go to pick up a team except I had 2 teams arriving 3 hours apart. I picked up my first 2 guys at about 2:00pm from their New York arriving flight. We drove over to the Deli Mart and I bought some of the groceries we would need for their 2 week stay. I then took them over to the guesthouse just west of the airport where we would all be staying for the night before heading up the coast on our 3 hour trip to our Project Help guesthouse at Borel. After dropping them off I headed back to the airport to get the other team arriving at 4:15. I arrived at the airport at about 16 minutes after 4 pm and much to my surprise they were coming out of the airport . This 30 minutes early arrival was good I thought at the moment, we would not be late for supper at 5:00. Usually flights arriving at 4:15 don't clear customs and claim baggage for at least 45 minutes after arrival. If not for God looking out for our safety we would have been at the airport when the quake hit. Instead we were standing on the balcony of the New life Children's Home looking over the hills above Port au Prince. Then the building slowly started shaking but being right beside the airport I didn't think much of it, then the whole upper balcony started undulating like waves on the Caribbean ocean. All of us in the building ran for the stairs and yelling to the others to get to the ground to safety. The orphanage staff were frantically getting handicapped orphans out of their beds and rooms. After we were all out and accounted for we looked across the city sky line where only minutes before you could see all the homes scattered in the hills above port. Slowly a great cloud of dust started rising across the sky line from up out of the city below till all was blocked from view. Then the after shocks started often at 10 minutes intervals that lasted till 2:00 am. As we surveyed our little 5 acre part of Port au prince we considered ourselves lucky , no one hurt no major buildings down. Yes many of the walls around the compound had fallen down as did part of the roof of the Chapel there were some leaking waterlines and busted things thrown off walls and out of cabinets but minor in comparison to what we were hearing on the radio. Major structures and landmarks knocked flat and thousands dead were the first reports coming in. With the continued tremors we decided we would all sleep outdoors on the ground, so mattresses were brought out, it was a very long night. The next morning we got a first glimpse of the outside as we drove around looking to find somewhere to buy fuel for the truck, at least 3 bodies were spotted still laying where they had died from being hit by fallen concrete or drug out from under fallen buildings. It took us almost a hour to get fuel as the lines were long at the few stations open. Now 24 hours later as I sit in front of my computer I know that even those reports we heard were short in preparing me for what I read and see on the Internet. The death toll may be 100,000 or even much higher. The city may soon run out of many items such as food, fuel, water and medicines. Hundreds of thousands maybe a million are homeless. People are frantically trying to find relatives to see if they are alright.

It is not for me to guess why this happened to a country that has been so far down for so long that they feel hopeless in ever thinking life will change It's not for me to know what God was thinking yesterday. It is for me me to know what I myself will do about this horrific disaster. Yes I can pray and as many were were praying for me yesterday I to will pray for those who been affected by this but I can do more. E-mails are pouring in and for hours I couldn't keep ahead in responding, money is also being send in and we are making decisions on how best we can apply it to the needs. We maybe can put together some medical teams to help those immediately as they are rescued and those who may need long term treatment. We have a fine medical facility at Pierre Payen and my reports are that many hospitals are not able to open in port or have been damaged, we may need to get the injured there. Tomorrow I plan on going back to see what is possible , no we can't do everything that is needed but we can do something and will do something. I do know that was what God was thinking when He created me and I'm sure that was what he was thinking when he created you as well. The reponses of help and prayers I have been reading show that we do care for the downtrodden, the sick, the maimed, the orphaned and the poor. I know you have probably seen more pictures of this than I have but I will post some later. God bless , In God's love, steve

Thursday, January 7, 2010


As I said in my previous post we expect many great things to be happening at Project Help-Haiti this year. One thing is for sure we are seeing an upsurge in teams scheduling trips to Haiti. I just looked at the most recent team schedule and through June 19th we have fifteen confirmed teams coming to work or visit PH-H. If we should continue this trend through the last 5 1/2 months of 2010 it will be not only a busy but a record year. This though isn't the important thing (setting a record) but a barometer of mission interest that is an indicator of healthy U.S. churches.

Though I have only been in my new position two months I have had an opportunity to get some thoughts on some of our long standing ministry efforts (medical, evangelical and educational) at PH-H. Along with those ministries I have some ideas from my own ten years of experience with GAP Ministry's work in Haiti about what missions need to be doing to be affective. I have been talking with Don Dennison the Director of Cross Cultural Ministries the parent organization of PH-H about some of these possible ministry ideas.

One of the things we have agreed to do is bring our two compounds and guesthouses into better shape not only for our own teams but to make them available to other organizations working in Haiti. One of the things that has always bothered me is the duplication of ministry work and the often unneeded spending of funds on buying or leasing property and setting up guesthouses, vehicles, generators and work tools. Project Help has been in Haiti almost 43 years and has these facilities and resources that we can make available for others at a reasonable rate. These funds can be a way for us to keep Haitians employed, help us with repairs, operational costs, new purchases and keep our facilities filled with mission teams.

I'm also a firm advocate of missions working together and partnering with other organizations on similar ministries. I hope to be promoting and announcing some of these arrangements this year. I have been studying and looking at ways for my own GAP Ministry to help to improve quality of life issues facing Haitians. In late 2008 we started the "Feet Across the Mountains" ministry, which has been doing some successful work with several mountain villages in Haiti. The focus of this ministry is that of "a hand up not a hand out". In other words helping them to help themselves. This can of course involve work teams doing construction projects that can benefit a mountain community. Such as constructing cisterns, wells, dams & irrigation systems, clinics, schools and churches. Conducting community health outreach training in mountain villages as well as bringing in mobile medical, eye and dental teams on a regular basis. Introducing new agricultural techniques and crops that are low tech, environmentally friendly, high yielding and economically viable to producers. Teaching and introducing better animal husbandry and livestock breeds. Promoting, teaching and distributing small micro financing loans and possibly creating business as missions (BAMs). This is a promising idea where a business or series of businesses are set up (financed) by a non national (out of country) person or organization. They employ nationals, produce or manufacture enough of something to pay expenses, repay start up costs and profits help to generate income funding for mission outreaches. The Borel facility already has a metal fabricating shop and block making business that could eventually attain these goals.
One of the the goals that PH-H has always had is that of having a Technical School. This year it is my hope we can get these going at both of the locations we have designated as potential sites Borel and the new Frecyneau school/church complex in St. Marc. No matter what we do with any of these ministries we will be making more and better disciples. I have a saying hanging in my house in Haiti it says," Evangelize everyday if necessary use words". In God's love, steve