Update from our sisters in Haiti – January 2024

María del Valle and the Community in Haiti have sent a letter to the Society recounting the current situation there.

Anse-à-Pitres, December 28, 2023

Dear Sisters:

First of all, we wish you a very Merry Christmas and we hope that 2024 will be a year of blessings for the little ones of the Lord.

Today I wanted and we wanted, as a community, to share with you the situation of our mission in Balan, Haiti.

You already know that this year we are living in Anse-à-Pitres, Rosa as the director and I am in charge of the projects related to administration. Both of us are accompanying Foodley (the academic coordinator) and Adrien (the administrator) who stayed in charge of the school when we could not return to Balan. The school year started with fewer children than last year, due to the insecurity in the area. However, we were able to have the school's annual party with many activities that made it a pleasant evening despite the fear and insecurity that surrounds Balan.

In the month of November, the bandits appeared in Balan. It was a very scary time for the whole school team. Adrien was able to warn the parents, who were able to pick up their children and thank God there was no problem. However, the bandits entered some houses and removed the belongings of these people. From that day on, the bandits continued to enter and loot. Our school as well as the others in Balan are closed. We also learned that the children and their families, as well as all the school equipment, left Balan and are now in Ganthier, Fonds Parisyen, Croix des Bouquets and other surrounding villages.

We tried to find out where the children from the school were, how they were doing, and if any were known to have enrolled in another school. Many of them were relocated to relatives' homes or renting and some are wandering around looking for help. It was important to see what we could offer these families. On December 18, bandits attacked the village of Ganthier and the people of this village have fled mainly to Fonds Parisyen.

The situation is getting more complicated every day. It has been confirmed to us that the bandits have entered our center, school and house. It is with great sorrow that we tell you this news.

Thank God not all of Haiti is in the hands of the bandits. Anse-à-Pitres, where we currently live, is a quiet place. You can walk, work together and have a good quality of life. We have had some very nice experiences in this village for Christmas, which we will share with you soon.

Now our hearts go out to the people of Balan, with so many dear faces there. May God give them the strength to continue to struggle in this beautiful country. Please pray for them.

María del Valle and the Community in Haiti