Mission Statement

Stone By Stone- building a road following God's chosen path.  Together with our brothers and sisters of Haiti, we strive to serve the cooperative of HASWEP through Listening, Educating, Supporting, Praying, Working, Advancing.

LESPWA means HOPE in Creole. 
We are full of hope for Haiti.

 

.

 FANMI LASANTE

CLINIC

Desab, Haiti

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Sunday
Oct292017

I Quit!

My excitement and anxiety were at high levels as I was preparing for my first trip to Desab, Haiti, and Fanmi Lasante clinic. Nicole Pitzer, President of Stone By Stone, and  I left Pittsburgh International Airport at 6:07 a.m. on Saturday, October 7th.  We rendezvoused in Boston with Sue McCook, Vice President/Treasurer of Stone By Stone, and left for Port Au Prince to arrive in the early afternoon.

And the culture shock begins.  I cannot explain the chaos of the Port Au Prince airport in the space I have here.  The heat was oppressive and the people were crowding around.  Thank God our Clinic Administrator, Fenel Jean, arrived to pick us up.  And the culture shock continues.  Driving around the side streets of Port Au Prince was quite an experience.  We arrived at a restaurant which had a UN security guard, with what appeared to be an M-16, guarding the parking lot.  But the food was everything I expected.  Excellent. 

After leaving the restaurant the culture shock begins again. We are now on our way to Desab.  Heading out of Port Au Prince, the traffic was mostly bumper to bumper with horns honking with diesel and gas fumes filling the car.  The only rule on the road to Desab is “there are no rules.” Stop signs mean nothing, and the only right of way is the one you take while beeping your horn.  Quite hilarious.  I really enjoyed it. 

The rest of the way to Fanmi Lasante clinic assaulted my sensibility and emotions.  Seeing people digging in refuse along the road, and others selling anything from chickens, pigs, water, shoes, dresses, and blouses, even gasoline in used anti-freeze bottles caused me to just stare blankly out the window trying to make sense of it all.  And then we hit Cabaret.  Traffic was stopped.  Vehicles double parked with no way around. And did I mention the heat was oppressive?  We finally made our right hand turn out of Cabaret and headed up the mountain road to our guest house.  By now my emotions were ruined. And the mountain road was no respite.  Winding, washed out, rocks, crevices from erosion, and very narrow passages, caused much concern to all of us.  By the time we arrived in the plateau on top where the Guest House is located, I made a decision to quit being involved in Stone By Stone.  The past two hours were a visual assault that left me thinking that there is not enough time, money, or people to alleviate and offer any long term help to the people of Haiti.  I QUIT!

That is until Sunday morning.  When we went to church with the community members and experienced the joy that the people exhibited, I began an emotional turn around.  The joy of the Lord truly became my strength.  And from that day forward I experienced the tremendous work Stone By Stone is accomplishing in the village.  Seeing the clinic in operation and full of 78 patients that day was amazing.  I was brought to tears when a young lady had her name called to go start the intake process with one of our medical providers. Her smiling face lit up the room. I left the room to compose myself before I continued my work of interviewing potential patients, some of whom had walked for 4 hours to see our doctor.  One person, 70 years old, came by donkey being led by his loving son.  It took them 4 hours as well. 

Well, not only am I not quitting, I am having difficulty thinking about anything else but my next trip to Desab where Stone By Stone and I are making a huge difference in the lives of many people in the community surrounding Fanmi Lasante clinic.  We have a large list of projects to accomplish as we endeavor to build up this community.  With all of our help, there will be enough time, money, and people to make a lasting impact on the citizens of Desab and the surrounding villages.  Did I mention that it was hot?

Greg Miheli

board secretary


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