The Hope Community Project sometimes suffers a bit of an identity crisis. That’s understandable. After all, when we started seven plus years ago as Haiti Orphan Project we were all about building an orphanage, a school, and seeking to care for children in orphanages.
But that all changed a few years ago as we learned more about the “orphanage” situation in Haiti. When we discovered that upwards of 75% (on average) of the children living in orphanages in Haiti actually have at least one living parent, we were moved to change our focus.
You may know, or maybe not, that the main reasons that these children with living parents end up in institutionalized settings are economic reasons. The often single parent simply cannot afford to feed all of her children, let alone send them to school. On top of that, persistent health issues have terrible effects on the families. So, out of love and with great reluctance, some of her children will be handed over to a nearby orphanage where the parent believes that at least her child(ren) will get a couple of meals each day, get to go to school, and a doctor or nurse will come by periodically to check the children. The family becomes separated.
For this reason, we changed our focus from orphan care to orphan prevention, striving in all we do to keep families together by addressing the problems and circumstances that lead to mothers deciding the best for her children is institutional care
What do we do to keep families together? We provide education sponsorships, medical and dental care through our HOPE clinic, and economic opportunities where families can move towards self reliance.
Over the next few weeks we will link to some short videos we had produced. These videos will tell our story. Really, they will tell the story of wonderful Haitian families working by God’s grace to care for their families and keep them together. We hope you are moved. Moved to join with us in supporting keeping families together.
Today we start with an overview of Hope Community Project. Click HERE if you want to become a monthly partner helping Haitian children stay with their families.