Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Shoes Needed!

Today was a hard day; very hot plus we were working in the pantry in the sun. Our job was to sort toys and hand out the packets to children that did not have a sponsor. They would get a packet containing an outfit, a toy, toothbrush, hygiene items, a Barbie doll or stuffed animal.

Most of the girls were very small and petite, so what a ten year old in the US would wear would fit a twelve-fourteen year old in Haiti. Although I was built like that when I was younger, always wearing clothes too big

There was a box that had been shipped and delayed in port costing Lifeline $40 a day and since our group (the six of us and Judy from Iowa) were called the "Prayers" we decided it was our job to start praying for that box to be found. It was full of packets that we needed for the children. Later that night we received a call that it was found in Port-au-Prince and would be brought to the compound just in time to hand gifts out to the boys on Friday. Bertie, (Gretchen's sister-in-law) was in charge of the pantry. When we told Bertie that Diane was a relatively new Christian she was so excited and said God answered our prayer to show Diane prayer works. It was so cool.

We were working next to the pavilion where children were lining up to receive 'newer' shoes. I say 'newer' because most of the shoes were used but still in good condition. I have never seen children patiently waiting for hours, sitting on hard benches in the heat and still have smiles on their faces. As I looked down at their feet, some of their little toes were sticking out due to the shoes being too small or the shoes being totally worn out. A volunteer walked over to the child and then took their hand and guided them to an open chair. She would then remove their shoes and socks and measure their feet. A runner would then go through the hundreds of shoes piled on the table to find an exact fit. Tennis shoes were a big hit and some tears were shed when they didn't get what that had dreamed of.

It was heartbreaking when we did not have shoes for every child. Some had to leave with nothing or instead of tennis shoes they had to take flip flops which really don't help when you walk miles to get to school.

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