Haiti

A few shots from Haiti. March 2009.

Since the earthquake in January, I can't get Haiti off my mind. I thought I'd post a few shots from my time there early last year.

With all the traveling I've done in my life, I've never been to a place like Haiti - the poorest country in the western hemisphere. We went down in the beginning of 2009 (with the wonderful crew from Mercy League Haiti) with the intention of scouting land for a vocational school for street children, and finding a space to purchase for an already existing children's home.  Land scouting/logistics aren't really my strong point(s), so I went to capture images for the organization and try to tell the story of the lives of Hatian children. Though we were only there for a short time, it was super productive and also frustrating at times. I remember there was a day when I dubbed Port Au Prince as "imposi" land. The place that's impossible in every way. Wanna drive across town? Impossible in under an hour. Want to order lunch? Also nearly impossible. It seemed like each day was some sort of uphill battle - but it was such an amazing and beautiful experience. Haitians are some of the most hospitable and generous people I've ever met. Meeting the children living on the streets was obviously heartbreaking, but the hope of knowing that Mercy League Haiti was aiming to start a vocational school focused on more of a holistic learning experience for them was an empowering feeling.

One of my favorite days was going to visit with a family that lives up on a mountain that Luke had lived with for a time. Luke is the founder of MLH and had lived in Haiti for a while a few years back. As we ventured through the woods, we started to hear kids running at us screaming at Luke because they were so happy to see him. They were coming out of everywhere yelling and jumping on him for hugs. They welcomed us and I felt like I was in a scene from the movie "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" because by this point everrrrrrryONE in the entire extended family had made their way out to welcome us. We played games with the kids and had an amazing dinner on top of that mountain.