This is day 6 of the construction project. Today is Monday, May 12, 2014.
Today we started out the day a little light on Haitian workers. Pastor Benito said that it was because of the large rainfall last evening – the trucks or tap-taps that pick people up run late with all of the puddles and mud.
We started out the day with prayer and big strong hugs between the Haitians and the Americans. Our relationships are certainly growing with strong bonds of trust, comfort and common purpose. We prayed together and then hit the work hard starting with the laying of the bottom course of block for the bathroom facility.
Below is a picture of the bathroom project about an hour into the morning.
Also, while there was a large quantity of mixed mortar, some touch up was done on the stove. Below is a picture of the stove. Also in that picture is the oven that the April 2013 team started, the October 2013 team enhanced, and the May 2014 team finished by incorporating a functional cast-iron flue damper.
Richard Frank continued all day teaching Joslin to weld as they built the first prototype for the student desks and benches. We have no electricity on site, so we have to use a gas generator to power all power tools. Since most people in Grand Savann do not have electricity, they flock to it when it is available. Most of the Haitian workers have cell phones. Below is what the Haitian workers setup whenever the generator starts.
I had an opportunity to go into the church this morning to see the child our family sponsors through Vision Trust, Judeson Jeudi, and his sister. Until the school is finished, all grades of school children K-6 are held in the church. After saying hello and taking pictures, I pivoted to walk out and 30+ small children greeted me with each one wanting to hug tightly. I literally could not move and took out my phone camera to entertain them. I snapped several pictures, one is shown below. I was able to walk a few steps and then they all hugged tightly again. I looked up at one of the teachers and with a look of desparation I said, “Help!” She laughed and finally Pastor Benito came by and instructed them to disburse. Scott Couch tells us that as we return to the same place multiple times to help the same people, we build up credibility and trust. This event in the church today with the school children is testament to that.
Scott Couch instructed a team to start running string through the electrical conduit for the wiring after lunch. We cannot run wire yet in the whole structure because it will be stolen if there are no locked doors. Instead we run string through the conduit. To keep the string from being pulled back out of the junction boxes, we had to get creative with resources and decided to use plastic bottle caps (see picture below).
Larry solicited several children to collect plastic bottle caps for this purpose. 10 minutes later, Larry came in with his small booty (of bottlecaps) smiling ear to ear. I was in one of the middle classrooms when it started to downpour. I looked out the window because a tiny goat was crying in distress right below the window – I figured the goat does not like heavy rain. By the time I walked to the first classroom, our basecamp, I saw the goat standing on a wall on the church. Larry Becker snapped a picture (shown below). He said the goat just jumpped right up there from the ground where you see it standing in the picture. On our way to the school each morning, we see many goats up on top of many walls. Mike and I point them out and chuckle, “…there’s another goat on a wall…”.
After an hour of sitting in basecamp waiting for the rain to stop, we finished up running string through conduit in three of the classrooms and had eight courses of block laid for the bathroom – below is a picture about 2 hours before the end of the workday.
That about does it for Day 6. Have a blessed evening and thank you for your prayers and support!
Scott Norton and the GSC School and Bathroom Facility Construction Team