For me, the biggest take away from this trip is that we all aren’t really that different from each other. For starters, the poverty that I saw in Limbe wasn’t unlike what I’ve seen in East Oakland, California, where much of my family is from. While there are differences in how it appears, at the end of the day, poverty is poverty. Also like Oaklanders, Haitians are a proud people. They don’t need anyone’s pity, and they don’t need anyone to save them. While Haiti is known as the “republic of NGOs”, a nickname derived from the many NGOs that have flooded the country in an effort to rebuild it, Haitians are the ones creating a brighter and more prosperous future for themselves. This is why I stand behind One Sparrow as much as I do: we believe not in “saving” people, but in connecting those who are already doing the work to the resources that they’re lacking.
I’m grateful that I was able to go on this trip, and I would love to go back to Haiti someday.