Hurricane Matthew: Missionary Updates

Assuring the supplies reach where they are needed most, Agape's distribution network on the ground is the missionaries themselves...

The Haitian people greet you and thank for your prayers and support during this difficult time.

In an effort to come alongside our Haitian brothers, we just recently re-covered 5 class rooms of New Life Mission School of Verdon Lazile which lost its roof. It is located 4 hours outside of Port-au-Prince. The children are now able to go back to their classrooms which they have not been able to do since October 10th.

Also, we gave away 2,340 Manna Packs which contain rice, soy, dehydrated vegetables and spices and 60 gallons of cooking oil. Each rice packet will provide a meal for 4 people. This food is very necessary at this time because the people have lost all their crops.

Next week, we will be going to Fond des Blancs, where we have another church and school. We will take material to repair the damages on our New Life School. We will be taking in construction materials to repair damaged homes and food for distribution.

Please view the pictures attached to this email and please continue to pray for those in the southwest and in the north as it continues to rain and flood in these areas.

God bless,

Roger & Margaret Clark | New Life Mission of Haiti | Port au Prince

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Dear friends,

Last Sunday we had to get up early because the service at the Baptist Church in Gelee started at 7 am. The hurricane blew off some of the roof and so the  believers gathered early before it got too hot. The mood was serious because many had lost almost everything; but also there was a thankful spirit there because we are still alive. Frantz was preaching about Jeremiah 29 where it says: to seek the best for the city meaning to build, plant, marry, and pray. We hope that our brothers and sisters were a little bit encouraged.

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Afterwards we visited Cambry's house. She is in her 2nd year at SEED and her family had lost a lot. A while ago they had a fire in the house and that's why it was already in bad shape.

On our way home we visited Emmanuel, one of our graduates. He had lost almost all of his fruit trees, his nurseries, and his gardens.

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We will tell you more in our next update because now communication is better and we find out more and more about the tragedies that have befallen many of our friends, staff, students and their families.

We want to thank you all for your encouragement and prayers in these last weeks. May the Lord bless you richly.

In His Service,

Frantz and Doris | SEED Minisries | Les Cayes, Haiti

Dear friends and family,

Tim here again with one last update before I return to Canada (and PT school) on Wednesday. It has been a whirlwind of distributions and work around the camp since I arrived. It seems no one west of Les Cayes was able to escape destruction and all are eager for aid whether it be food or shelter.

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We have continued visiting Renault every other day to distribute manna packs to the community through the children. We also did a combined distribution and census of the local village, Tiveni. Over 150 families were registered by name and photograph, as well as the condition of their home. This was already useful today as I went and distributed a load of tarps throughout the village. We didn't receive enough to give everyone (you can't purchase tarps in Haiti right now), however it remained orderly as I visited the homes in the worst condition first and kept track of who had received.

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Rod and Debbie continue to be impressed by the local people. They were eager to resume their weekly volleyball tournament in the gymnasium, so they ensured it had been cleaned and set up for this afternoon. They also received word that the destruction was even worse in the nearby mountain and requested food and water to carry in to the people there. The conditions were noticeably worse and the people were very grateful to receive aid.

The Wray's are very, very thankful for your prayers and support. They are looking forward to receiving visitors who will help rebuild the camp and aid in the relief efforts starting tomorrow.

Tim (Rod, Debbie, and Katie)

Dear friends,

There are many reasons to be thankful! We are alive! Even that we lost a lot of material things our area fared much better then west/northwest  of us. There most of the people really lost everything! Will give you more details in my next updates.

Foremost, many thanks for all your prayers and your encouraging e-mails. The situation drains us a lot because there is so much to do and we must constantly decide where and how we should help. But we are taking small steps in the right direction:

  • We were able to cut the trees in our neighborhood and at SEED and free the road and some yards. There are still many trees down and there is a lot to be done for the next months.
  • On the weekend we could distribute Chlorine and tin through our neighborhood committee. Our small farm in Duchyti had a block house and was not damaged. About 150 people found refuge there.
  • We are working on a plan on how to help long-term. Here’s a draft of our first meeting:

-          Main problem: water treatment because Cholera is already rising alarmingly. In Port-a-Piment the only refuge was the cholera hospital. That means that a lot of the refugees also got cholera!

-          We need tarps, tents, and tin to give some shelter

-          Food

-          From Monday on our interns will be sent out. This is a big prayer request because the pastors are waiting already for them. Our students are not so excited because this will be extremely difficult for them to live in conditions they were not planning on. We are trying to motivate them and letting them know how important their input will be. Through them we will also have the opportunity to help these communities directly....

-- Frantz and Doris Clotaire | S.E.E.D. Ministries | Les Cayes, Haiti

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Greetings from Florida,

Diane and I were not in Haiti when Hurricane Matthew passed by our home there in Les Cayes.  The missionaries the at Cite Lumiere prepared late into Monday evening as they waited for the arrival of the category 4 hurricane.   But none of us were prepared for that level of destruction they saw on Tuesday morning.   We were glad to learn that the missionaries and our Haitian friends were all safe and sound.  The damage reports started coming.  Trees were down everywhere, most tin roofs were blown off, electricity was off and no water because all the power lines were down.  Gardens were flattened, and in many places huge amounts of flooding due to the over 3 feet of rainfall. The coastal areas took the brunt with the high winds and the storm surge destroyed the homes and beaches.

All of the reports that we have received were via text message, as all phone communication was off.  The entire communications system we had in place on Monday evening was completely blown away by the next morning.  Our towers with all the antennas were toppled, the satellite dishes for backup were all blown over.  The damage and destruction is overwhelming.  We praise God there was so little loss of life in our area.

We have worked with those on the ground to try to restore some communications.  One of the phone companies has started getting some of their towers working again.  As for our local system, it looks like most everything was destroyed or blown away and will need to be replaced.  The costs for all the new equipment is way out of reach for us, so this is a way you can help us.  Most of all please pray.  While loss of life was minimal the emotional impact is huge. This storm will continue to impact southern Haiti for months we work together to rebuild.

You can contact us anytime via email, iMessage, or by phone if you’d like to help us rebuild. And please continue to pray for Haiti, we love you and look forward to sharing with you more in the future. Thank you.

John & Diane Vrooman | MEBESH | Les Cayes, Haiti

Dear friends and family,

Tim here again with another update from my parents. With help from the people of Tiveni they were able to clear off the road and reach the camp this morning.

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"The camp is unrecognizable. The whole drive out to the camp reminded me of scenes following a tornado, except here the devastation goes on and on."unrecognizable

 

Rod, Debbie, and Katie worked to begin cleaning up the camp today and prepared the girls and boys dorms for locals who lost their homes and no longer have shelter. They will house 200 people from the village. The main generator was underwater so Rod began the task of disassembling and cleaning it out, with hopes of starting it tomorrow. Due to the lack of power and water they returned to Cite Lumiere for another night, but hope to stay out at the camp starting tomorrow.

The village gathered and thanked the Wrays for saving their lives by warning them of the storm and setting them up at the French Canadian compound up the road. Pictured right is one of the homes in the village.Rod had recently stocked up on Manna Pack rice for the Renault Sunday school program. Luckily, it survived the storm and they were able to begin distributing it to the locals today.

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Thank you for your prayers and support. We will keep you updated as we hear more.

Tim (Rod, Debbie, and Katie) | Camp Manahaim | Les Cayes, Haiti

 

Dear friends,

We are fine, at least physically. Emotionally is a different case. I will send details when we have internet.

- So much damage that we don't know where to start.

- We want to help our neighborhood who had lost most of their roofs.

Trying to plan today for that with the community leaders. They need potable water also that will be done by distributing Clorox for treating water.

- We had to clean the SEED yard first and also some of the farm in order to function again. No big animals lost, only chickens.

We will keep you posted. Have borrowed some internet from someone and keep it short.

Praise the Lord for his protection!!

Please, continue to pray for wisdom in getting our priorities straigth.

Blessings in our almighty God's name.

Doris Clotaire | S.E.E.D. Ministries | Les Cayes, Haiti

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HBM update from Jeremie. Just got off the phone with Renous and our good UN friend JD. JD called with a satellite phone since communication is still down. HBM has severe damage to the compound. We lost the new kitchen roof and walls. Main house lost every window blown out in the whole place. Renous said everything we own is wet or ruined. Solar panels were ripped off and now we are down to only generator power. Renous said Te Wouj school roof is gone, church is all gone. He said no one is dead or injured that was at our compound so we are thanking God for that. Renous said he needs me and Marc Donald bad to come help! Please pray for strength for us and our emotions as we head home and we see with our own eyes the damage before us! We will need lots of help with willing hands and money to get HBM back up to where we need to be but in the mean time will continue to minister to the staff and our community of Jeremie and surrounding villages. We serve a big God! IN MY WEAKNESS THEN I AM STRONG BECAUSE CHRIST POWER LIVES IN ME!

--Mark Stockeland | Haiti Bible Mission | Jeremie, Haiti

Good afternoon from Haiti where we have survived the hurricane. For us personally, we received here at home very little damage even though the strong gusts of wind blew around us. One screen came unattached, and an upstairs door kept opening up. 

Yesterday Pastor Lamartine went up in the mountains to check on our church in Athis, near Fort-Jacques. Our church had some metal roofing sheets blow off, and our school's roof metal sheets received more damage as they were put on since 1994 or 1995. Last year only a few sheets were replaced. Maybe they were the ones which stayed on, I am not sure!

After checking on these buildings of ours, Pastor went to visit homes which were damaged, gardens which were destroyed, and trees such as banana trees were blown down. Also, some of the avocado trees were broken, and most of the unripe avocados were blown off. These people planted gardens, and trees to sell for their living expenses. Now, they are in much need!

Just about everyone suffered from this hurricane in Haiti. Wherever Pastor goes, the people are telling him that they are starving. HELP!

Both of our churches near the Dominican Republic were affected by too much rain from the hurricane. Many homes are flooded.

Our church in Mirebalais had no problems, and we are thankful for that!

Thank you for your faithful service to us, providing us a better way to minister to the people of Haiti.

May GOD bless you and keep you safe!

 

With much love & appreciation,

Patricia & Pastor Lamartine Liberus | International Faith Fellowship Ministries | Port au Prince, Haiti

Dear friends and family,

This is Tim Wray writing you from British Columbia with an update on how my parents and Katie are doing in Haiti. They are fine but there is devastation all around. The entire southern Haiti is without power and water so communication has been intermittent at best. I've received text messages and just got off the phone with my Dad and so the following information is paraphrased from my parents.

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"Homes gone, trees down, no power, no water. It's quite incredible to have lived through as we look around. We can't go to the camp yet as hundreds of trees are blocking the way. Rod is out with the chainsaw again trying to clear the roads so we can get to more people."

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The report is not good. Camp Mahanaim has been badly damaged. High winds and water washed away everything that was exposed. All doors to buildings on the camp were ripped off and water flooded every room in every building, even rooms on the second floor. All of the solar panels were washed away and destroyed. All personal belongings have been destroyed. Flood waters in the area are still too high for any kind of motor traffic. The storm deposited 4 inches of mud throughout each building. However, the gymnasium and new shop are intact.

Rod, Debbie, and Katie are still unable to leave the mission compound in Cite Lumiere. Rod worked all day yesterday removing over 200 trees that are down and blocking anyway to move more than 200 feet from where they staying. He said the main concern now is for the people of Les Cayes who have had everything they owned destroyed. Their houses have been washed away, there is no food or water available.

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They hope the road will be clear enough to make it out to the camp tomorrow morning. They aim to re-establish themselves there, see what supplies are salvageable, and focus efforts helping people who are in immediate need and distress. Word is that all but 3 homes in the entire village of Tiveni (outside the camp) were destroyed, and that its much worse further West down the coast.

Thank you for your prayers and support. We will keep you updated as much as we can.

Tim (Rod, Debbie, & Katie Wray) | Camp Manahaim | Les Cayes, Haiti

Report from Michael Broyles, re: MAF's initial survey flight:

"I just returned from a 6 hr evaluation of the entire South Coast of Haiti from Jacmel West, around the point at Dame Marie, and then North coast back to PAP. From Zanglais west is bad. The worst of the devastation is Port Salut West to Dame Marie. Jeremie is close behind, and then Cayes. Decimated in each area. Lots of work to be done. I will post pics later, when I can. Kinda busy now. A major long term concern is the complete loss of gardens in these areas. Food is already scarce."

It's really bad.  We received a report from medishare and also according to johanne B from sow a seed. ILE A VACHE NEEDS IMMEDIATE CARE Guys I just landed back from Jeremie. It's wiped out. Barely 1% of houses standing. The people are alive...they survived. But soon they will starve. They're cut off.

Things are really bad here in the south. The mission compound took a lot of damage. The roads were just cleared today to reach them

I took refuge in my car and pulled it into the carport.  I lost part of my roof, the cistern, my gate, part of the security walls and about 2 - 3 inches of water throughout the whole house. 

I have spent the last two days and nights in my car with the dog and the little girl I have guardianship. We spent a lot of time cleaning today and will try sleeping in the house. 

There is so many people without homes or roofs. All the trees that provide food / fruit have been destroyed. 

Power lines and phone poles are down everywhere 

The hurricane felt like being in a tornado that just wouldn't end.

 

If you guys can send tarps and tie downs that will help a lot of people 

Some of the schools and churches have been destroyed. 

It's unbelievable 

 

Blessings 
Gladys Mungo | Haiti's Children, Inc. | Les Cayes, Haiti

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What did you first notice in this photo?  For me, I saw my two oldest sons alive and well.  Hurricane Matthew took our roof and damaged our stuff, but our family is safe.  I am happy to report that all of our missionary colleagues and friends are alive and well and to my knowlege all of our Haitian friends are safe.  But none are unscathed.

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The eye came ashore 30 miles to the west of Cayes where we live, but as you can see, hurricane-force winds pummeled the entire western end of Haiti.  The damage closer to the eye can hardly be exaggerated from the reports I've heard.  MEBSH reports at least 75 church buildings are damaged, some completely, along with church parsonages and schools.  Even so, thousands of Haitians found

Sean & Heather Christensen | World Team | Les Cayes, Haiti

Hello,

I heard you were sending relief planes to Haiti. I don't know if you are planning on coming to Les Cayes, but the orphanage I work at lost all its food supply in the storm. Is there any food coming down? We have 35 people living at the orphanage. We are very concerned knowing the impending food crisis that is coming and not having any food. Please let me know if may be able to help.

Thanks,

Ashley Wojton | Foyer des Ies Enfants de la Providence | Les Cayes, Haiti

Can you guys get big tents. We are just getting word that a couple of our orphanages were destroyed - the buildings. The kids list everything. We need someplace to house them until we can rebuild

Gladys Mungo | Haiti's Children, Inc. | Les Cayes, Haiti

Hi Everyone

 

I've no national electricity nor Internet,  so I'm doing a little "degage" to write you on my telephone that has some Internet.  In a country like Haiti it's important to have backups to your backups for days like this when,  as one friend noted,  you have to 'turn on a dime'  to handle the newest major unexpected event.

 

Okay,  this is what I know so far... We have little information coming from the southern peninsula since telephone lines,  antennae,  and Internet are all down, but we do know that almost all the harvests, which were just about ready,  have most likely been lost and fresh water will be at a premium. To add to the problem, the bridge connecting the rest of the country with the south was washed away at Petit Goave,  a town on the coast located a little below Leogane, which was the epicenter of the 2010 earthquake. They will probably create a pedestrian crossing as soon as the water resides; then folks will be able to take transport to the bridge area,  walk across the river,  and get other transport into the south. We are praying that most of the folks had been able to find a safe place so that it will just be a question of handling structural damage.

 

I've researched the major storms to hit Haiti for the last 150 years, and by far Matthew was the worse. There were two ladies of similar magnitude that hit the southwestern tip of Haiti in the 1960's, Flora and Cleo; but Matthew was like a slow-moving  bowling ball that passed directly down the alley between Jamaica,  Haiti,  and Cuba,  knocking down all the pins--only it showed a predilection for Haiti. It hovered over us in Port-au-Prince for more than 18 hours,  and its slow passage multiplied the damage. This time yesterday I'd lost only about

3 banana trees,  this morning about a dozen more were gone.

 

It looks like our mountain did help to protect Port-au-Prince, though,  because there was a lot less damage there than up here, except they did have some flooding. The bridge on the northern end of the city,  which sits a good 300 feet from the riverbed of Rivière Grise,  was closed for a while because water was up to the roadway.

This riverbed is normally nearly dry.

 

On the mountain,  there’s been a great deal of fallen trees and blown off roofs.  I can look out and see the mountainside across from me. A number of the little homes have lost their roofs.

 

The homes that we recently built in and around Blanchard are still fine,  and many folks have taken refuge with the RKL families. There are about 100 families that were still living in makeshift shelters since the earthquake, nearly 7 years now,  and a huge number of these structures are no more. Many of the roofs on other recently rebuilt homes lost part or all of their tole. One of our homes that we built during the pilot phase lost a section as well. But we are using a better method than the one we knew about then,  and it does seem that this is more resistant. Yeah!  I love happy endings!

 

I'll be visiting Blanchard perhaps on Friday. The road in is damaged, so I will wait a bit for some cleaning/repairs before I go. It's not an easy trip under regular conditions,  and I've kind of reached my lifetime quota for adventuresome travels 🙂  I may also be going into the upper part of the southern peninsula to help with a damage assessment over the weekend.

 

Thank you all for your prayers and many words of encouragement. Please particularly keep the folks in the south and those here who just lost the little lodging they had in your thoughts and prayers. I'm praying that not only that we find resources to help them rebuild but that teams like ours that know and have been convinced of the superiority of the newer methods will finally have the opportunity and open minds so that they can share these with their peers around the country.  As I travel around, it's clear that even when homes have been rebuilt,  they have not followed the newer,  better,  and sometimes less expensive methods.

 

Judith D'Amico | Port au Prince, Haiti

"If you've read our latest updates, you know the devastation in the town of Jeremie is extensive. Any home/business/building not made of concrete has been destroyed or washed away. Even concrete structures have lost their roofs...This news is just the tip of the iceberg. A large portion of Haiti's population does not live in the cities. They live in the rural countryside, with their livelihoods and daily food rations coming from their personal gardens and tree crops, which most definitely have been destroyed."
--Lacy Stockeland | Haiti Bible Mission | Jeremie, Haiti

"It isn't an exaggeration to say that near 100% crop loss is throughout Southern Haiti...Many homes, churches, and schools in our local and partnership church communities have lost roofs, and or the structures themselves...Many animals have been lost...Access to clean water has been dramatically reduced..." --Reciprocal Ministries International | Les Cayes, Haiti  

 

"We were relieved to hear from 2 of our Haitian staff this morning! They shared there is tremendous amount of devastation in southern Haiti. Trees are down, many roofs are off homes in the community, roads are impassable and communication is very limited. The hurricane's strong wind and rain lasted over 12 hours..."
--Loving Shepherd Ministries | Les Cayes, Haiti