We’re halfway through our pilgrimage and its flown by so fast. Yet again, we slept-in and missed mass with the students since these days have been jam packed with somewhere to be, people to meet, and something to do. Therefore, today was meant to be a slower day – one where we stay here at the school and be one with the community. We stayed here, but it we still busy. 

Our first activity was a tour of the computer lab that OLN has helped to develop. The room is about the size of the church conference room and houses around 30+ computer stations for students to use. Each station has a full suite of Microsoft office (word, PowerPoint, excel, publisher, access… Etc) and ran at a comfortable enough speed to learn how to use the programs and get some schoolwork done. The majority of the computers are networked and there were some lagging issues but nothing that would hinder real work from getting done. 

Two students are in charge of the computer lab and they helped us out with getting started. After speaking with the classes of students over these days, we realized that many of them still do not know how to use these programs and could benefit from some lessons to spark an interest. So, Cindy took it upon herself to teach one of the students how to use PowerPoint. He picked it up within 20 minutes and was excited about having a new resource to assist in his teaching curriculum. I think the fire has been sparked. 

Then we met with Sister Moline to discuss her challenges and desires for the school and how we, the OLN Haiti Ministry can assist in making this place even better for the students. That meeting took around three hours and many things were discussed that provided clarity and direction for our twinning program. To sun it up, her first priority is providing clean drinking water for the school community. Currently, we have helped them in building a well but the students and staff do not trust that water for unknowable reasons. Let’s just say it’s a perception problem. 

So Gene tested some water from different locations around the campus from the well, the main spout, the main cistern, and the river. The test would show the probability of the water being of drinking quality or far from it. The results came back today and it looks like our well water is clean! Everyone was happy about that and it went a long way in providing confidence in this new water source, especially for drinking. (the cistern and river water showed that they were not good quality, but that was expected). Once confidence in the water is gained, we can move-on to the next project with sister. Until then, water comes first. 

The rest of the day we did a couple exciting things that I’ll describe in a future post since my fingers are tired and this is long: 

  • Gene and I setup the Internet-in-a-box in their library to aid in research
  • We spoke to the third year class of students about their experience and aspirations 
  • I made a couple friends amongst the student class when I said I spoke Spanish and they could speak it too!

Tomorrow we’re traveling to the farm that belongs to Sister Moline’s order. We have to wake up here at 4am. Yeah, 4 in the morning. It’ll be a long day, but a fruitful one I hope. 

God has been good to us in every way while here. Thank you for reading and keeping us in your prayers, he is with us. 

God bless,

Joe Cuadrado