Today is my husband Richard’s birthday. We quit buying birthday gifts for each other years ago, but this year I broke with that and ordered something really cute for his birthday.
His name is Rodolson. He’s seven years old and he’s in first grade in his home country of Haiti.
No, we aren’t adopting a child in our old age! Instead, we will be sponsoring Rodolson through an organization called New Missions which, coincidentally, is celebrating it’s 34th birthday today.
In 1983, the late George DeTellis and his wife, Jeanne, left the United States for Haiti with nothing more than what they could carry on the plane. They lived in tents pitched under a grove of coconut trees and started a church the first Sunday they were there. Now, 34 years later, New Missions, which also branched into the Dominican Republic in 2000, has over 30 churches as well as elementary schools, high schools, medical clinics, a Bible college, and a professional trade school.
Following the devastating earthquake of 2010 the United States military made the main New Missions compound their primary base camp for relief work in Haiti’s southern plain. Though many churches and schools were destroyed by the 7.0 earthquake, New Missions has rebounded and continues to thrive.
For just $33 a month, child sponsorship through New Missions provides a child with quality education, a daily hot lunch which for some is their primary meal of the day, and medical care. New Missions also provides a number of community development initiatives including clean water, vocational training and local employment, all vital in this poorest part of the western hemisphere.
Rodolson is not our first New Missions child. We have been sponsoring Marie since she was nine. Today, she is a lovely young woman of 22 with one year of high school left to complete and a dream of pursuing nurse’s training. Over the years, we’ve enjoyed exchanging letters with her and watching her grow. Now we get to do the same with Rodolson.
So, Happy Birthday to both Richard and New Missions and welcome to the family, Rodolson!