“…aim for perfection, listen to my appeal, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you.”
2 Corinthians 13:11
All programs and activities of The Faith Project are focused on the nine areas of community development that the Garde Saline Leadership Council identified as part of their sustainability plan:
- Leadership Development – developing leadership training programs and building a new Baptist Church.
- Clean Water – providing clean water.
- Food – developing sustainable agriculture, poultry, and fishing programs.
- Medical Care – providing a permanent clinic that will serve not only Garde Saline, but the northeast region.
- Sanitation –providing a compost sanitation/waste management system.
- Education – starting a Christian school.
- Business Development – developing a Women’s Micro-Loan program to encourage business and product development.
- Transportation – improving the condition of the primary road into the village and purchasing motorized vehicles.
- Housing – building/repairing homes.
Because there was a major Cholera epidemic in Garde Saline in 2010/2011, when we first came to the village, the Leadership Council felt strongly that the initial focus of The Faith Project must be on the three areas of the sustainability plan that would develop a public health system, reducing not only Cholera but other treatable diseases – and deaths – related to those diseases: 1) clean water; 2) good sanitation; 3) access to health care.
- June 2013 – a water filtration system was installed in the village, providing the first clean water. In 2016, a chemically-treated water system was installed in the village by a different nonprofit, and The Faith Project closed the manual water filtration system.
- November 2013 – Dr. Cleantus Jean, Jr., began holding tent clinics in the village. Today, the clinic operates out of a three-room cement building in Garde Saline.
- March 2014 – with two grants from the SG Foundation, the village was able to build a compost management site and implement its first compost sanitation system.
- December 2015/2016 – a Rotary grant provides major improvements to the sanitation site, including installation of a well, solar panels, and the construction of a supply shed.
Other major developments in Garde Saline’s sustainable community development plan unfold:
- Spring 2012 – a farm pilot program was initiated, providing two existing farmers with money for seed, fertilizer, tools, labor, and technical assistance from Haitian Agronomist Louissaint Nelson. Within a year, farmers tripled their crop yields and profit.
- Fall 2012 – a Christian elementary school began at the Baptist Church, currently operating Kindergarten – 3rd-grade classes.
- Spring/Summer 2012 – in partnership with the Instituto Interamericano De Cooperacion Para La, 20 families in the village have been trained to raise chickens. Each family built a chicken coop and received 7 chickens as part of the program.
- Fall 2013 – the village fishing association received three new fishing boats and new nets. The number of families benefitting from the program rose from 25 to 56, and in addition to providing food for participating families, the association made a substantial profit. The association developed a profitable market for its fish, selling it to buyers from the Dominican Republic.
- Fall 2013 – the Sewing for Haiti team from Union Congregational Church sewed over 500 dresses and boys shorts for the village’s children.
- 2014 – With a contribution from Paul and Lynn Hunt, the Women’s Economic Development Revolving Loan Fund was established, providing business opportunities for 20 women in Garde Saline. The initial program was launched in 2015. In 2016/2017, Phase II of the Women’s Micro Loan Program was launched, providing the top ten producers from Phase I and ten new women with business training and business loans.
- 2014 – Linda and Dan Marrin purchase critical diagnostic equipment for the medical clinic.
- 2014 – Board members, Kathy and Neal Gaalswyk, collaborate with the nonprofit, In Ian’s Boot, to provide hundreds of pairs of shoes to villagers.
- 2015/2016 – Capital Campaign launched to help complete construction of the Baptist Church. Funding ($26,000) is received from individual donors, Timberwood Church, and the Oldham Little Church Foundation to launch the campaign. In October 2016, the first church service was held in the new church.
- May 2016 – Leadership training provided for the Leadership Council and other regional leaders.
- July 2016 – Hope for Haitians, a nonprofit partner in the village, funds the construction of a Rice Mill and Community Center to help spur economic development. In addition, they began the construction of cement homes.
- October 2016 – The Sea Star Foundation provides the first ever dental services in the village.
- November 2016/2017 – Sustainable Agriculture Program is launched with a matching grant from the SG Foundation, providing twenty farmers with education, technical assistance in the field, and farm loans.
- April 2018 – Christian outreach programs are developed for children and families through the Baptist Church.
- May 2018 – Rotary approves a matching grant to develop two sustainable poultry projects.
- July 2018 – Final preparations are made to launch Phase III of the Women’s Micro-Loan Program.
- July 2018 – Decision made to develop Research Farm Land into a small peanut operation and raise funds for a Peanut Mill.