Over these last few days I’ve experienced many eye-opening experiences. Today we had the opportunity to go and experience the food program in action. This food program is for children who are enrolled with Children’s Lifeline based on certain life circumstances. Making our way through the countryside of Haiti we headed over to a newly dedicated church and school in Barban Court. This site is an extension of Children’s Lifeline and is in the same location as the graduation that we attended on Day 2. Haitian time is much different than American time. We were supposed to serve and help with the program at 11, but it got pushed back to noon because the food wasn’t arriving. At noon the food had yet to arrive, so we made our way over to the orphanage that we were going to visit after feeding. We were going to come back to the feeding after we saw the kids.
At the orphanage, there was a 5 month old baby. She had a red tint in her hair, which meant she had a lack of protein. For the first 2 months of her life she was put on antibiotics to gain the nutrients that were missing. We did a skit about “Jonah and the Whale”, as well as sang a few songs for the kids. They feed on attention and certain kids attach themselves to us. Many of us gained a special bond with one child individually. When I looked into the eyes of the little boy sitting on my lap, I could tell he had been through more pain than I have and may ever experience. I hope that I never have to endure the struggles of this sweet little boy.
After a little while at the orphanage, we walked back to school to help feed the kids in hopes that the food had arrived. When we got back, the food was already being served and we hopped right in to do whatever we could to help. Some were putting spoons into the food, a few were clearing off plates, and others were passing out food. I was clearing off the plates and passing them to the dishwashers as the children finished and served a few times. Serving the kids was a mass production and took all hands on deck! The kids were all thankful, and would try to protect their food as they ate. This experience of watching the kids eat and be thankful opened my eyes to see what it really means to be hungry, and what it really means to NEED food.