I woke up on Tuesday to Kompa music playing at Gentille Hirondelle school around the block. They were getting ready for a party at the school. The 18th was Flag Day and my birthday. And teacher appreciation day is also around this time. So, we celebrated all three things in a ceremony and performances all day long at school. The teachers wore suits and ties (in this 100 degree weather!) and all the children wore their best outfits. The children, teachers, and administration also took this opportunity to thank all of you who have donated to make the roof and all the projects possible and the day was dedicated to you too! They made a huge sign with the names of those of you who donated $500 or more (to be replaced later with a permanent one) on the wall. They all sang happy birthday to me, thanked me for helping them, hugged me, recited speeches for me, and gave me a gift. I pass on all this love and gratitude to all of you who supported this project.
Despite the horrendous earthquake destruction in Port-au-Prince, the lack of sanitation, rationed electricity, oppressive heat, huge unemployment, insecurity, cholera, hurricanes, and everyday fight for survival, all of these precious moments, appreciative new friends, and those singing, dancing, laughing children give me hope that one day Haiti will be okay. It is all truly inspirational and I am reminded again why I fell in love with this country 13 years ago. Thanks to all of you who have donated money, books, art, and time; your gifts are truly appreciated and you really HAVE made a difference in the lives of so many Haitian children!