Wow! It is almost finished! After 4 trips to Haiti and 2 years of planning and building, Dan Hildebrand was able to put the finishing touches on the EcoShell for our new Youth Development Academy in Maniche! More than 2 years ago I met Dan, and we started working towards our goal of using 21st century building techniques to create earthquake, hurricane, fire and infestation proof housing for the orphans of Haiti. Out of that came the EcoShell, a low-cost, secure and safe building, that could be built using materials found in Haiti. Last week we spent 4 days painting, putting in the windows and doors, and finishing the cementing of the inside of the Multi-Purpose room that will be used for a variety of events and programs at H.E.R.O. This week was not easy for many reasons, including: Driving through 3 demonstrations where more than 100 armed police officers and UN soldiers were trying to keep the peace; Running out of paint half-way through the process; 2 days of me having fever and diarrhea after more than 10 hours of driving back and forth between Maniche and Port-au-Prince!
But that’s what makes this work fun! Over the next week, in addition to finishing the EcoShell, the wall and grand front gate will be finished so that the entire property can be properly secured. I am so proud of Dan, Jonathan, Preswa, and Evens who worked so hard to make sure that the finished product was of the highest quality. The wall and the EcoShell are just the beginning for continuing with the construction of 4 additional buildings that will eventually house 24 Haitian orphans. I want to thank everyone that believes in the work that we do on the ground here in Haiti and has supported our efforts to continue to grow and thrive for the sake of the children we serve. Thank you!