Welcome to Haiti, the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere. With a population of over 9.5 million and over 75% of those living in extreme poverty and the same percentage of unemployment we have a serious problem and responsibility on our hands. The numbers for people living in extreme poverty are real and they are harsh. Someone defined as living in this condition is one who makes $2 a day or less.
$2 a day, that is what we spend on a mall mechanical ride so that our kids will stop bugging us. $2 is a Toonie (Cananda), which most of us just throw into a jar to collect so that one day we can take all of our Canadian coins and cash them in for bills and purchase something that we don’t need. $2, that’s what we give to the drive through worker at Taco Bell when we are a bit snacky and want a bean and cheese burrito, the change goes in our car ash tray till we have enough for the next Taco Bell run. We spend $2 in the same way that we breath or blink, without thinking.
Today is Friday and most of us are looking forward to the weekend so that we can sleep in, have a late big breakfast/brunch with bacon, eggs, pancakes, and freshly ground coffee. While we do this, which is not bad by any means, over 8 million Haitians are waking up to the same thing that they wake up to every day, just enough and a lot of the time not even that much. As we sit in our comfort and ease please think about those who don’t have the same privilege. Enjoy your sleep in and your breakfast, and in addition do something today for those in Haiti living under extreme poverty.
What can we do? We can pray. Pray that God, who loves and created the Haitian people, will continue to send help, aid and people into the situation there. We can give. Go to One Days Wages a non-profit set up by Eugene Cho and give one day’s wages to extreme poverty in Haiti. We can make awareness of the situation to those around us. Send the link to this blog to a few people and ask them to act as well. Finally we can go.
My friend Ezra who has been with YWAM for over 10 years and has traveled to some pretty poor countries said to me while we were in Haiti “I have seen a lot of poverty in my life, but I have never seen poverty like I have seen in Haiti.” It is healthy to go. It is good for us to be in a place of such need in order to get a heart and real feel of what it is like. There are many organizations you can go through, pick one and go. Or, just go by yourself.
Many blessings to you today and this weekend. Thanks for taking the time to read this post.