The photo below was my very first interaction with Aline. She asked me to take her photo, I complied, and this is the face she made. At first I thought she was being silly by giving me the stink eye, but I soon realized she wasn’t goofing off. I think she was just trying to figure me out and was wondering what I was doing in her community, so I made a point to get to know her.
Fedline (Right) and Aline (Left) – peer over a wall next to the medical clinic to see what the commotion is all about.
I love these two girls, they seemed to be ever-present the week we spent in Kalapa. I later found out, Aline lives right on the other side of the wall next to the church where the medical clinic was set up. When I saw their heads pop up, I couldn’t help but laugh, periodically disappearing when they got tired. I decided to ask them a few questions from the other side…
The girls informed me, they’re not sisters, just good friends. Both of them are in 8th grade, and both of them love math. Miraculously, Aline’s home, even though it sits on the beach only a hundred or so feet from the ocean, was barely damaged during the storm. I spent a little more time with Aline the next day and asked her what her biggest fear was. Her answer was similar to a lot of the young people I spoke with – that her school would be destroyed. Her school sat right behind the church where the medical clinic was set up and the only thing left now is a desk , chair, and some cinder blocks. There are no more walls, roof, or any trace of school supplies.
As we traveled from community to community in southern Haiti, It seemed as though every single school we passed had been destroyed. Education is crucial to breaking the cycle of poverty in developing nations, especially in Haiti. Our goal for 410 Bridge communities is to help get their schools up and running again as soon as possible, so children can get back into a routine of learning.
Many Haitians don’t have the means to start rebuilding their homes and communities. Without income or a basic routine, most families aren’t able to send their children back to school yet, even if their is a building to learn in. To help ensure families have enough food to eat and the ability to begin earning money again, the 410 Bridge has launched The Chicken & Egg Initiative. We’d like to invite you to join, by gifting chickens to a family like Aline’s this Christmas season and to help begin the process of restoring and rebuilding.