October 18, 2013 – Haiti day 5
Our week in Haiti…
After Courtney trained all the preschool teachers and nannies….she informed them that next time Small Steps International (SSI) would bring the training material, including the video– translated into Haitian Creole. They exploded in smiles and clapping!! The need for training in child mental health is so great around our world. The need is here and we are serving that need.
It’s amazing to see the healing that has happened in between Small Steps International’s visits to Haiti. We have seen these children’s lives changed through the implementation of the skills that the teachers and care takers have learned. Children who wouldn’t take food from anyone…now eat and thrive. Children who wouldn’t be hugged….now accept touch. Children who couldn’t trust…now knowhow to recognize their care takers are looking out for them. Children come into the preschool without experiencing any boundaries or rules. Their parents don’t care where their children (even as young as infants) are during the day yet these children learn over time how they can be responsible in the confines of love and respect. Small Steps International helps train these teachers to do this in the healthiest and age appropriate ways. Our own host missionary family has trusted us enough to serve them with our SSI skills as well. Restoring and healing mental trauma and abandonment takes time and SSI is here for the long haul…willing to be patient as health and healing come over time.
Knowledge that is common with educated parents in many countries, including the U.S., are not common for many places of poverty in the world, especially in Haiti. People of privilege can be tempted to forget the needs outside of their own lives. Trials faced in first world countries like broken appliances that can be fixed in a day with all parts in the same city, the store being out of your favorite brand of food, cannot compare to the despairing trials of children in poverty….needing shoes, needing food, needing education, needing parents, needing love.
After our third trip to Haiti, we are even more passionate and proud of our work! Small Steps International is making baby steps in mental health here in Haiti and it is continuing to grow! We are seeing baby steps in our work in New Mexico too! It’s an exciting time to move forward in bringing health to children all over the world! We’d love your support in our work! Small Steps International looks forward to gaining more people to walk along side of us as we touch the lives of these hurting children, one at a time.