I’m not sure about each of you, but I still cannot believe that the summer has come to an end. It seems like just yesterday we were at the airport frantically searching for a (thought-to-be) missing student, AKA mystery man Callum. You guys were our second group of the summer and we could not have ever wished for anything better.
Over the course of our ten days together I came to know and love each and every one of you. Together we faced many challenges and also many incredibly beautiful moments. From the views at the Citadel and the school/clinic on the hill to discussing effective development and the negative implications of hand-outs, Mark, Isabella, Emily, Jacques, and I had the privilege of watching each of you grow so much in a short period of time. Your group had a unique drive, beyond that of most, to understand not just what you were seeing but why what you were seeing existed. You each brought a level empathy and maturity to the table that makes me more confident in our world’s tomorrow. I remember one night – after lights out – I heard one room talking pretty loudly to one another, so I got out of bed to tell everyone to be quiet. As got closer to the room, I realized that you all were talking about the 7 elements of human security and repercussions of poverty tourism… These are the moments I love. These are the moments that make me feel like the luckiest person in world for having the job that I do. For me, your trip was filled with moments like this.
Whether it be your work in Blue Hills or your ability to navigate cultural and language barriers at the clinic, your group accomplished so much in just ten days. However, I feel as though your biggest accomplishment, was realizing that there is more to be accomplished and how you can play a role as an agent of change. I do not have words for how proud I am of each of you and how excited I am to see where the future takes you. Looking back on your trip, there are countless moments that make my heart feel so full.
Though I wish I could go over each one, here are a few that I will always cherish:
-Realizing that mystery man, Callum, stayed home and did not come on the trip
-Talking with you all as you processed difficult moments at the citadel
-Expecting everyone to hate the hard labor of cement work and then being surprised when you were all practically fighting over who could do it next
-Jazz in the pharmacy
-Enjoying the view from the Satama School clinic on the hill
-Watching each of you 100% commit to the Groot Farma debate
-Seeing your attentiveness during the Blue Hills community meeting
-Watching you all continue to persevere through heat rashes and stomach problems
-Jacques’ ability to sleep anywhere and everywhere
-The Blue Hills community dance off
-Taylor is the messiest and most unique human I have ever met
-Mentor groups <3
-Rose, bud, and thorn on the last night
I know that there are countless more memories that we could talk about, but I will save recounting those for when I see you each in Haiti (or life) again one day.