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Sunday, March 22, 2015

Day 4 - March 2015 Haiti Awareness Trip
Today started off again at 6:30 a.m. with a knock on every door to get ready for the exciting day ahead. After breakfast, we all piled in to a truck and Andre's car with all of our donations and we were off to the Sacred Heart Centre.
On arriving at the centre, we split into two groups, one staying at the nutrition centre and the other went on their way the Fort St. Michel nursery school. This is also when we were introduced to Idia, our interpreter.  Each group had some incredibly touching moments at each location. The students at the nursery school were extremely excited to see and interact with us. When the truck approached, we could hear the children inside. Upon entering, both groups were greeted with open arms by both the teachers and the students.
Many of the students asked to be lifted up and swarmed at our feet. Many of the students reached out and touched our hands almost as if to see if we were real. The first group that went to the Fort St. Michel attempted ring around the rosy and Simon says where the second group was slightly more prepared with crayons, colouring books and stickers. Many of the students wanted to give their artwork to us when we were leaving. When the groups left there was a mutual feeling of wanting to spend more time there. Many of the students come to the door to hug us and really  didn't want to let us go.
 Back at the the Sacred Heart Centre we were all given a tour of the facility. We saw the space for the adult classes, ex. sewing, cooking, etc. The next level up were the offices of the nutritional nurse, the accountant, Denise, and Andre. We were given an explanation of what the job entails and everything the centre does. The third level was the kitchen and meeting rooms where we later had lunch. The final level was a unanimous favourite...the babies. Both groups got to spend a lot of time with them  individually and as a large group altogether. Many of the girls created a strong bond with some of the babies and it was very hard to leave them. It was incredible to see the hard work of the staff there and how much they care for the children. A little while later we were pulled from the babies for lunch .
We had the amazing opportunity to eat with the staff of both Fort St. Michel and the Sacred Heart Centre. We had some time before lunch so we had the opportunity to first hear Idia's touching story, then had some fun with the staff. We danced and sang and had the opportunity to share some parts of our experience from the day so far. There were many things that some of the staff members said to us that were very touching and surprising such as how they were surprised that we just jumped in so quickly and without hesitation. Others were that we interacted with the children, even if it was obvious that they had a cold, like it was nothing, and so on. After we finished our lunch, we went back down stairs to observe the alpha literacy class. It is amazing to the see the looks of their faces as they get better and better. There's a real sense of pride in their work. Yet again another amazing day here in the beautiful country of Haiti.

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