Thanks to Jedd and the Christian Alliance for Orphans (CAFO) on the following two posts on the CAFO blog regarding the Haiti Orphan Relief Team (HORT):
How to Share What They're Seeing on the Ground in Haiti
These words from an email sent me by a friend in Port-au-Prince highlight the struggle of those seeing the tragedy in Haiti firsthand, grappling with how to share what they are seeing with friends without appearing sensationalistic:
I am struggling to find a balance to educate people. Some things seem too awful to put in writing. In the rural areas, there are still MANY bodies visible in unreachable places in the rubble. Like many third world countries, Haiti has lots of dogs and they are feeding on the carcasses. Children are seeing this. One person with me (Paul Myhill, name added) says 80 countries and several war zones have not prepared him for what we are seeing. Most of the public schools were shoddy government construction and hundreds of children died in them but I have not seen this reported. We have seen heavy equipment digging where schools were and bodies of children remained. One man told us the villagers already went thru the rubble searching for their children, but they found "mostly parts not bodies." We all have photos and stories like this but not sure how to share. Please pray about this . . . we need discernment. Most of the media have stayed in Port au Prince downtown. The world has not seen the full reality, and may never now that we have Tiger Woods and the Olympics. This is only a 3 hour flight from the U.S and Americans can help in such big ways. This is way beyond 3rd world poverty . . .
All that being said, while I write this, the sun is setting and people are singing praise songs on the roof next door. Another church near us has no roof but the people kneel there at 4:30 every morning on the concrete to pray and worship. The faith here is overwhelming.
If you aren't already, I'd strongly encourage you to read the updates and snapshots of life on the ground in Haiti coming from the HORT Team. As one team member emailed me yesterday, "Without exaggeration, I would have to say it is at least 20 times worse here than what you see on CNN."
Here is the start of the most recent post from Paul Myhill . . .
Things don't have to be shattered to be deeply broken. During the night (Wednesday night), the rains came. The pastor's house we're staying in started to leak at multiple points, including waterfalls gushing into a bedroom and stairwell. From a distance the home looks fine but, up close, you see the cracks running deeply at the ceiling line throughout the whole structure. Under foot, the tiles shift and rock on the second level, evidence of a floor that had buckled just enough to separate ceramic facade from concrete plane. Sure, the house is fine under normal circumstances but, when tested by the storm, it gives way to penetrating outside forces . . .
You can read more here, but be warned that the details Paul describes are very strong. If you haven't taken steps to help Haiti yet–sharing financially, or praying or anything else–and definitely don't intend to, it might be better for you not to read the rest.
The Haiti Orphan Relief Team (HORT) can be found on Facebook.
Abandoned-Orphaned is the personal blog of Paul Myhill, President of World Orphans. Subscribe to the blog in the upper right-hand corner of the home page. Paul can be found on Facebook and on Twitter @paulmyhill.