Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Impact Stories from Haiti Part III

Michelin Meriland was married with two children when the earthquake hit. Their home was destroyed
and they were forced like many others to begin sleeping outdoors. Her husband left her, and she
became very sick, struggling to care for Alexandro, 5, and Alexe, 3. “I had no hope.”
Then came housing last March from Samaritan’s Purse, followed by Operation Christmas Child shoe
boxes in December.

“It has been a difficult year – very difficult,” Meriland said. But when I suggested a shoe box could have
no real impact, she quickly countered: “It’made a big difference. It’s made my children very happy.”
“It has put joy in my heart to see my children cared for,” added Editte Pierre, 28, who has three
children and no husband. She gestures with her hands while describing what happened to them a year
ago: “The house fell. All the walls came down.” Editte and her children slept in the streets for a month
before she learned of the opportunity to have one of the temporary shelters offered by Samaritan’s

Olacia Sucesse had a similar experience. She is a 36-year-old mother of five. Her first husband died
years ago. Her second suffered a brain injury when some quake debris fell on him. He couldn’t work as
a truck driver anymore, became mentally unstable, and abandoned his family. Fortunately, the family
has a home now, thanks to Samaritan’s Purse.

“The situation has been so hard for me,” Olacia says. What did the arrival of Operation Christmas
Child shoe boxes mean for her? “Berlannecia (her three-year-old) is just a baby. She doesn’t
understand where the boxes came from, but they are a big hope for me. We have no money, and so I
thank God for this. I had faith in God. He brought Samaritan’s Purse to me so that I have a house and
my child has gifts.”

A final word from Rosita Atelus, 38, who survived the earthquake with her three children and husband,
who is now unemployed: Atelus says her children’s health, and the shoe box gifts they received
recently, are clear evidence of God’s provision. “I don’t know what God’s plan is, but I am thankful.”

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