Haiti Mission Frequenty Asked Questions
What is the story of HMI?
St. Bridget Haiti Mission
The Diocese of Jeremie, Haiti services over 500,000 Catholics in the poorest diocese of the poorest Country in our hemisphere. In this Mission Diocese, there are only thirty priests to serve over one hundred small chapels and parish churches. In Haiti, people struggle with living conditions that are almost unimaginable. Daily problems include lack of water, food and shelter, as well as health care and educational depravation.
Lloyd Duplantis visited Haiti in 2000 in order to help in a dispensary. He was impressed with the work that was being done in the area of Leon but was struck by the lack of potable water for so many. He returned to his church parish of St. Bridget in Schriever, Louisiana and shared the story. A group of nine returned to begin work in the church parish of Our Lady of the Assumption where they were to work with Pere Jomanas Eustache or “Fr. Joe”.
Because of the help received from St. Bridget Parish team "Fr. Joe", was able to begin elementary schools in the area, educating several hundred children who, prior to the arrival of HMI, were unable to attend school. In addition to supporting the school, construction on a multipurpose building has begun which was used for a school, an infirmary, a chapel, and a community center for the area.
In addition to supporting the schools, a feeding program was begun. Many children were coming to school with malnutrition so severe that they were unable to learn or stay in school for any length of time. Our feeding program now ensures that every child attending the elementary schools will have at least one nutritious meal a day. Supplying these simple needs for the poor children of the area often makes the difference between life and death for many.
The first project begun in the villages was to improve the water supply. Ongoing development of the water system in order that adequate and ample water was available throughout the dry season was deemed of utmost importance. A practical and efficient system of water reservoirs and water wells was developed.
Besides the school and water projects, a small community sugarcane mill was able to be rejuvenated and put back into service. A medical clinic was again stocked with essential medications to address acute illnesses such as parasite infestation, various infections and malnutrition. Our commitment to regular support now provides for a nurse to be on hand in the community regularly. This will enable the women, children, sick and elderly to be cared for more consistently and on a timely basis.
At some point in time, it was clear that HMI needed to build homes for those in abject poverty. That marvelous story can be found on the website and throughout the 20th anniversary book regarding the HMI adventure in Haiti.
We are all called to act with Christian kindness by participating in the missionary spirit of the church and taking an active part in the work of Christ. God calls us to make his presence known in the world, to believe in life and reach out to the poor. HMI is committed to this concept. We are convinced that desperation in Haiti and other parts of the world in similar circumstances will begin to disappear as more and more people understand the true sense of mission.
Please help the poor in our Sr. Parish of Our Lady of the Assumption. With every cent collected, more water will flow, more children will be fed and educated and more can be done for the poor and helpless.
How much does Haiti Mission, Inc. spend on administration?
At the time of this writing, almost all the administration cost of operating HMI has been absorbed by friends of HMI. We know one day that may change but until further notice, HMI has been the beneficiary of free office space, clerical help and supplies primarily from Lloyd’s Remedies but also from volunteers.
How often does HMI send groups to Haiti?
Our primary trip is in the Spring right after Easter. We usually have two trips of one week duration each. Deacon Lloyd and his wife Faie usually stay the entire times to coordinate activities. HMI also sends specialty trips which usually involves some overseeing of a particular project.
What makes HMI unique?
HMI is focused on water well drilling. There are relatively few missions or businesses involved in drilling wells, even though the greatest problem facing the Haitian people is sufficient potable water. Although HMI is involved in numerous other humanitarian, educational and spiritual initiatives, the primary work is drilling water wells.