Community in Stasis
A Haitian tent village continues to struggle with basic necessities even as the months since the earthquake ticks on
- Adam Cole // April 5, 2011
Time has progressed. But life, for the people of Cappva, has not, at least in the same linear sense.
Lack of water. Lack of sustainable income. Lack of educational opportunities for the children.
These are the things that categorized Cappva, a village of earthquake-displaced Haitian, in September 2010, and they are the same things that characterize them now, six months later.
With tents sprawled in rows on a patch of land a short distance away from the urban area of Cite Soleil, northeast of Port-au-Prince, it is a wonder how the people here don’t simply re-integrate into the hustle and bustle of urban life. Instead, they seem isolated, perhaps more and more each day, stuck in the tent life that now defines their existence.
I first visited Cappva on a Join the Journey missional outreach to Haiti last fall. The main purpose of the trip was to connect to the rebuilding effort by lending a hand in construction of homes. While on that trip, the Lord drew my heart to the people of the tent cities, many of whom have not been promised new homes, but rather seem to have been forgotten and neglected. God orchestrated an intersection for me with those that resided in Cappva; the village was very close to compound of the organization that I was volunteering with.
So many things broke my heart on that first visit, but mostly it was the children, seeing them so full of life yet so disadvantaged, without many of the things that we in the developed world take for granted. Post-visit to Cappva, I committed my heart to journey with them as a whole, to equip their leaders to inspire family heads to move from a place of need and despair to a place where they could control the outcome of their lives—and give their children a better chance at a brighter future.
And now I find myself here, a country and an ocean away, praying fervently and waiting for God’s response.
So many times in life, I am reminded that His timing is always perfect, even when we feel that His timing is much delayed.
Patience. I am waiting for Him to step into Cappva. And equally, I am waiting for Him to propel me/us as Join the Journey into Cappva to implement holistic discipleship.
Through a liaison, a young Haitian Christian named Clemson Saint-Fleur, we [Join the Journey] have been able to engage with Cappva leadership, even from afar. This is no way discipleship that He calls for, but it is at least allowing us to see into the continued hurts they are experiencing, which are many, and be intentional in our prayers.
Obedience. No matter what the Lord has in store for Cappva—how He will move there, who He will move there—I sense a responsibility to simply do what He has asked of me and in turn what He is asking of Join the Journey. In that regard, we pray for laborers, to reap this harvest, to walk alongside Cappva to display a maturity in Christ and also to inspire a way forward in terms of how to achieve livelihood benchmarks.
No matter what, I will not stop praying for Cappva, especially for those spunky children.
Adam Cole is the Executive Director of Join the Journey, a compassion-in-action organization set on empowering the most impoverished to have a deeper relationship with Christ and to be able to be self-sustainable. Join the Journey is sending a team to Haiti June 9-20; applicants for the trip are still being accepted. To contact Adam, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.