On the anniversary of the earthquake: moving forward

Last year, Nathan Bean and Greg Bennick spent over a week in Haiti meeting people, talking to them, connecting, and hearing about their lives. We saw just how beautiful the country is and how vibrant. It was an incredible reminder once again about why we work there and support the people. And why we love it so much.

Once on a outreach trip, a hike for almost half a day led to meeting some wonderful Haitians in a remote village. Their water supply had been affected by the cholera outbreak in previous years and One Hundred For Haiti helped them build this clean water tank. Around this new communal space, we gathered and became friends beyond language barriers and cultural gaps. We connected because we all understood each other the other beyond words and borders.

Haitian faces often tell a story of survival and resilience. They are also faces of happiness, connection, and hope. These are people who want their children to thrive, their homes secure, and their lives to be full and rich. These are people who are us, and we are them. To think of them as anything less is to be less human ourselves.

Many of the people attached to these faces are cash poor. Generations of foreign oppression carry heavy consequences. From slavery to trade embargos to political meddling to best intentioned NGOs, Haitians have struggled to determine their own destiny. Through it all, their humanity has remained rich and very real. We believe that people are defined by far more than borders and validated by more than their material wealth.

One Hundred For Haiti stands with Haitians today in the midst of Donald Trump’s call for racial purity masked as a statement of superiority, dominance, and exclusion. Haiti has weathered worse storms than Donald Trump and her citizens are more than capable of enduring racist insults. It is incumbent upon us non-Haitians to stand up against these vile words and against reprehensible policy that targets Haitians and others around the world.

Let’s be clear, Haiti wins in the end and we will help make that happen.

For the Haitians we have walked alongside, for the faces that tell stories, for the beauty around every corner, for the brutal past, durable present, and the audacious future of a small Caribbean Republic, today from Seattle, we stand with Haiti.