Or maybe I should say this is partly who Erin is. For who can ever fully define another person? I can only give you my perceptions, and even those will be
A better title: Perceptions of Erin...
She's someone who's reserved when you meet her--it takes some questioning to get her to open up. Fortunately I have interrogation skills--just ask Maddie.
Erin's from Brockport, New York (that could explain a lot). After she earned a BA in Early Childhood Education, she joined the Peace Corp. She taught in Micronesia for two years in a village with no electricity or motorized vehicles. She discovered the deliciousness of bread fruit--a real fruit. (I tried one in Haiti.)
When her two years were done, she went back to school for her master's in Teaching English to Speakers of other Languages (TESOL). And then way led to way, people knew people (sound like the last blog?), and she accepted an opportunity to serve/teach fifteen children in Haiti with HGIM.
|The girls' room|
|More sanitary than the hospital's bathroom|
Could I REALLY handle this?
I don't know.
We're "side-kicking" it with other ministries/organizations.
Junior, the translator (who is an excellent example of a young, educated Haitian, who loves God and who wants to help his country change), will be there to help her with the weekly shopping and other trips, e.g. doctor visits. Mostly she'll be on her own, though, with the local staff and Pastor Justin (also local). Fortunately, her Creole is coming along remarkably well.
I told Erin she'd likely (and simultaneously) have the best and hardest year of her life. She agreed and laughed a laugh that said it's all good.
If you'd like to keep up with her, HERE is her blog. (She's posted an update on Ezekiel, btw.) You'll find she's pretty straight foward with a punchy sense of humor.
When I met her at the airport in Jersey, I wasn't sure what to think. By the time I was saying good-bye to her seven days later in Haiti, I didn't want to leave her. I love her heart, her dedication, her intuitive nature about the children, her very capableness, and that laugh.
In this photo (shot after a wild ride to the the Port au Prince airport), it looks like I've taken one too many malaria tablets, and Erin? Well, she's trying to hold down her breakfast.
I miss the kids, and I miss her.
All in Goodwill,
P.S. HGIM will be going back to Haiti from May 10-May 17. Part of the focus will be building shelves, benches, and a chicken coop for the center. In doing so, we'll be teaching the boys building skills. Part of the focus will be VBS activities. If you have building skills or music/creativity/Bible skills or (so importantly) holding-children skills, and would like to sidekick it with genuinely kind people, please say the word. Jan and Dave would love to have you. Feel free to visit the website, or contact them for more info.
Heart of God Haiti: http://heartofgodhaiti.org/
Jan Ross (President, HGIM): firstname.lastname@example.org
David Young (Director, HGH): email@example.com