04 June 2010

Clean Water, Nourishment, and Opportunities for You to Go, too.

(Photos are of water filter distribution, building the chicken coop, and a canal over running its bank in the rain.)
Before we left for Haiti last week, John acquired 40 water filters. On Tuesday afternoon our new friend, Emmanuel, spent time training about 35 men, women, and youth - all in some way related to the Clays' artisan program - to use these filters for their families and community. The smile on their faces lit up the room, and they must have said "mesi" a thousand times as they left.
Clean water - to drink, to clean, to make bottles for babies. Clean water - I take it for granted most of the time when brushing my teeth, taking a shower, opening the spigot to fill a glass. Clean water - alleviating worry about whether or not dysentery will follow a drink or a baby bottle. Clean water...
Our group finished the chicken coop and almost completed fencing in the yard where the chickens will live. We set the fence posts yet were waiting on the gate which was being fashioned by a local blacksmith. We purchased 30 on Monday and they are set to arrive on Saturday. The chickens are already old enough to lay eggs, so within a week or so the Clays should get about 20 - 25 eggs a day - which translates to about 2-3 eggs a week for each of their artisans. Some friends of their across town have had chickens for a few years now and have seen an increase in birth weight in babies of the women with whom they work as well as less malnourished kids in their community. The Clays hope to have similar results beginning in the near future.
Please continue to pray for them and the community of Claireville - the little part of their neighborhood in Port-au-Prince where most of their artisans live. Some of the 12' x 6' cinder block homes survived the earthquake and subsequent aftershocks, yet many live in makeshift tents and shelters because their homes crumbled completely. Hurricane season started the other day and the tent cities will be a horrible place to endure the torrential rain and ravenous wind. The Clays are looking for groups willing to come and assemble some prefab shelters - $2600 for two homes and about 7 days to put them up. Any takers? I'll go back with you, too if you want.
Another opportunity to serve exists for anyone able to quilt, crochet, knit, and sew (with a machine). The Clays want to expand their current jewelry program into making clothes, blankets, quilts, etc. - all things that could be used by people in Haiti and also sold as artisan products abroad. If interested, then let me know, and I can give you more info.
A friend used these words the other day to describe the Clays: "Two people trying to do their part to change their little part in the world."

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