La Gonave Island, Haiti
"The island of La Gonave which sits off the coast of Haiti about 75 miles was at one time a lush tropical island in the Caribbean, probably the kind we all dream about. La Gonave was a quaint mountainous island 7 miles wide and 22 miles long which was home to about 100,000 Haitians until the mid-1960. [This number increased by more than 40 percent since the earthquake. Life changed dramatically when the Haitian government began rounding up the poorest of the poor and deporting them to La Gonave in an effort to "clean up" the mainland. During this era the population ballooned from 12,000 to over 100,000 which severely strained the natural resources necessary to sustain life. Conditions plummeted in the 1980's when La Gonave was annexed into the city of Port Au Prince. This allowed wealthy businessmen the right to come in and strip the land of all natural resources leaving the people of La Gonave with nothing but rocky landscape. The island became a barren wasteland from the overpopulation and stripping of natural resources. The once lush Caribbean island now better resembles the landscape of the moon.
UCAH WORKING IN PICMY
In Picmy 1 is where the mission work for UCAH is located. Upon arriving there in March of 2011, the place looked very desolate; we saw many houses there were torn down from the earthquake and it's effects was still there. Inside of the Church there was a lot of repairs that was needed to get done. The roof was literally one wood away from coming down and there were no benches for the people to sit when they attended Church, they were sitting on blocks stacked one on top of the other. Despite the condition of the Church, there were families living there because they had no place to stay. Many of the children in the area were attending other schools; however, most of them did not know how to read or write. The families were deprived of food and especially of water. They would have to walk more than an hour to get water that they would have to treat to cook, clean and bathe.
UCAH was able to help bring some hope to the area for the families as well as the children. Although we are still in the process of making changes, the Lord has allowed us to make wonderful changes which have brought some life to the community. Some of the work we have done in the area includes:
-Spiritual encouragement and growth, we helped to reconstructed the House of God by placing a new roof, pulpit area and adding benches. On Mission Trips there were revivals, conferences which brought people from as far as Port au Prince in attendance. During the trip we provided clothing that was donated by those in the United States and passing out food to people in the area
-Start building a brand new school for the children which consists of 6 classrooms. In the Church/School there was a limitation on students, the classrooms were divided into 3 different areas with make shift rooms for the other classes. in the new building hundreds will be accepted. We are happy to report that we have completed over 70% of the work, yet there is more to be finished.
-Building a cistern and repairing the current cistern which provides water for the community
Deeper inside of La Gonave, there are small villages with over 10,000 people whose condition of living are ten times worse. These are the people that United Christian Association for Haiti serves.
1000 BAS LUMIERE
PICMY, LA GONAVE HAITI
OUR LOCATION IN HAITI