Thursday, June 14th, 2012...8:07 am

Wrapping up our work at the clinic in Port-au-Prince

Today's blogger, Sam, teaching the students about dental hygiene

Today was Wednesday, day 4 of the trip, and what a packed day it was. The day began as per usual; davening followed by breakfast, but took a slightly different turn when, instead of hopping on our bus, we remained at the hotel to be honored with a guest speaker. Josh from Heart to Heart enlightened us with a talk about the organization he’s affiliated with, heart to heart’s history, its goals and its projects. Also interesting about that talk was that it gave us a fascinating perspective of an American living in Ayiti’s outlook on the country’s wonder, as well as its flaws.

After that we were off to school for the third and last installment of our projects with the kids: oral hygiene/health day. We held up posters of dirty, unhealthy teeth, and explained to the children how to make sure that their teeth would stay nice and healthy. Each kid walked away with an exciting goody bag filled with a toothbrush, paste, and floss.

Big Smiles!

Then all the kids made a circle around us and we transmitted a message of physical exercise by teaching them ‘cotton eye joe’, ‘the Macarena’, and ‘head-shoulders-knees-and-toes’, (which the kids loved and even taught us their own haitan version of the song!) After emotional goodbyes with our children whom we so closely bonded with these past three days, we traveled to a very old mansion in Petitiontville for lunch and a tour given by our very own Lionel.

Next we returned to the Heart to Heart building to put the finishing touches on our clinic.

We finished up painting, cleared out age-old trash that was piled up in corners, applied varnish to walls, and swept and cleaned the floors one last time. Confident that our work would be left in good hands, we finished up, admired our work, and returned to the hotel to clean up. Instead of having dinner at the usual time, we had the privilege of driving to the house of Maryse Panette Kedar at the Prodev office, who explained to us her efforts in solving Ayiti’s various crises mainly through targeting the uneducated, and the importance of each of us striving to help the world out any way we can. Her wisdom and charisma really inspired us to yearn to make an impact in this struggling world.

Lastly, after more dinner and bonding back at the hotel, we were enlightened by yet another of (Rav) Adam Berman’s deep and thought-provoking sessions. Tonight he entertained the notion of ‘Chosenness’ of the Jewish people, what that means for us and how it affects our relationship with non-jews, and the differences between responsibility and superiority. We broke up into pairs and read discussed various sources, whether it be from the Torah, from the Rambam, Rav Hirsch or others. Although by the end of the session we were physically exhausted and tired, our minds were fully awakened. That wraps up Day 4 of our trip to Ayiti.

To me, the most inspirational part of today was seeing just how happy the men from the clinic were, how thankful they were to us for all that we did for them, and how excited they were to put our work to good use.

– Sam

PS – Happy 2nd anniversary to Jon and his wife!

Happy Anniversary!

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