Coastal Haiti Mission Newsletter
Pastor Coty Explains
The Covid-19 Virus is hurting most countries in the world, both in health and in economics. In Haiti, we don’t even need to talk about the economy, because it is already so very bad. Instead, it makes more sense to talk about the level of poverty.
I, as the Pastor of a church in a poor village in Haiti, was very concerned about the stay at home order, that the government was requiring of us. Like many other countries, this was an attempt to avoid or at least minimize the Covid-19 Pandemic.
I remember crying out to God and also to CHM. God is using CHM to meet the needs of our people, more than we would have ever expected.
Since that time, our people in the Village of Cahess, have been receiving tremendous help from Coastal Haiti Mission (CHM).
With the money I receive each month, I buy rice and share it with the whole community. Brother Ken, as the President of CHM, is so concerned for the people, that he always asks me this question :
“What do the people eat with the rice, and, what kind of protein are they getting?” I get them rice because I know that rice is the Haitian plate.
Rice is very expensive now, so once the people have it, they find other protein, to mix with it. In the following pictures, I want to show what the people mix with the rice. This is spinach. Spinach is growing really well in the village. We have not had much rain in our village, so there are not many people who can grow spinach.
The people who are able to grow spinach, have a well with a pump, because irrigation is necessary for this crop to flourish in this climate.
The spinach is harvested , then sold in the village.
Rice and beans has been the typical meal among Haitian families for many years. Now however, beans have become too expensive, so many people are substituting spinach to eat with their rice.
Growing Spinach using well water for irrigation
One Harvest Season After Another
Pastor Coty Continues
In Haiti, we have multiple harvest seasons. They come in sequence, one after the other. It is fixed in our minds, that after the Mango season is finished, the Sugar Cane season begins.
In the city of Cap-Haitian (the second largest city in Haiti), you see the vendors at every corner. They load their wheelbarrows with sugar cane, find a good location, and then wait for customers.
You pick the piece of cane you want, and the vender peels it for you.
There is a big difference between the Mango season and the Sugar Cane season. During the Mango season, you can eat mango in the village from any land with no cost.
However, for Sugar Cane, you have to pay for it. It doesn’t matter if you are in the village or in a city like Cap-Haitian. For example, in the photos below, the sugar cane that the man is buying, costs 50 goud, which is 50 cents in US money.
Buying one piece of sugar cane.
The Church Services Begin
July 12th, was the first day that the churches were allowed to reopen, since the government’s order not to have meetings of any kind.
When I received the news from the government, I sent the word out that we will have church service on that special day.
I was surprised to see how many people were there. The people really missed attending church. We had a nice praise and worship service inside the building.
I also reminded the congregation that Covid-19 has not gone away, and that we still need to protect ourselves.
As an example, I have 2 buckets of water and soap for everyone to wash their hands, before entering the building. We don’t shake hands and still keep a distance from each other.
We were very glad to come back and worship in the building again.
Church services begin again
Pastor Coty did not write a report on the Food Distribution, but he provided photos instead. The rice distribution started early in the morning. Many of the residents arrived at 6 a.m. Pastor Coty said the people do not want to be late, possibly because they want to make sure that they get a portion of food before the food is all gone.
You, the Family and Friends of Coastal Haiti Mission provided $4,500 for food for the month of July. This allowed Pastor Coty to purchase two truckloads of rice to be distributed to the families of the Village of Cahess.
We the Board of CHM are incredibly grateful to you, for your wonderful generosity to these families. We say thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!!!!
The Food Distribution is a Community Event
Conditions Going Forward
When the government of Haiti allowed churches to meet in person again for church services, the people must have gotten the idea that the Covid-19 Pandemic was over. Their behavior really took us by surprise.
Please review the photos of the church services. Notice that the congregation is all clustered together in the church building, and not one mask is to be seen.
Furthermore, a review of the photos of the food distribution, shows the people clustered together again, with essentially no masks. A careful review of these photos indicated that there were only two people wearing masks.
We have shared our concerns with Pastor Coty, especially about people being clustered together in a building singing, with no masks being worn.
I have reviewed this situation with each CHM board member. It is our conclusion at this point in time, that we will revert back to the School Lunch Program and the Food for the Needy Program.
We will trust that there will not be a large outbreak of Covid-19 in the Cahess Community. If such an outbreak does occur, we will endeavor to assist the sick, to the best of our ability.
School will begin with “in class learning” on August 10th.
The Kindergarten and First Grade will not be meeting this year.
There will be 185 students and teachers beginning the school term. The Third Grade Class, will likely move into the Church Sanctuary, to provide additional spacing between students.
There is a question as to whether masks will be required to be worn by the students. The teachers will be required to wear masks.
The people who were part of the Food for the Needy Program will again be part of this program. Pastor Coty will continue to monitor this program, and he will adjust the list of the people needing food assistance, as he deems it necessary.
Proverbs 22: 9 NIV
The generous will themselves be blessed, for they share food with the poor.
Thank you Family and Friends of Coastal Haiti Mission, for all that you do to help the people in Cahess, Haiti. You are making a huge difference for these people.
Please remember, that CHM must continue to send our monthly commitment of $800 to carry on the ongoing CHM ministry in Cahess.
If you desire to help, please send your tax deductible check to our address and tell us how you want us to use your donation:
Coastal Haiti Mission
C/O Constance Goddard
3048 Spring Fancy Lane
Indian Trail, NC 28079
For tax deductible “online donations”, please use our PayPal service. Also please designate how you want us to use your donation:
May the Lord our God, who knows your heart and sees your actions, grant you great joy as you serve Him.
Connie, Esther, Pastor Coty, Carl, and Ken are very grateful for your sacrifice.
Ken Johansson CHM Newsletter Editor