The First Two Weeks
Clean Water for Haiti stands for so much more than our name. We make bio-sand filters in country for safe drinking water solutions in communities throughout our region of Haiti. In 12 years, over 26,000 filters have been installed. Those numbers are impressive, yet that has only reached 1% of the total population of Haiti. Our work is not finished.
Building in country means supporting the local economy. We don’t ship plastic filters from the US. We could, that would be easier and possibly make for faster distribution. But that would also mean 14 smart, disciplined and hard-working men wouldn’t have a job. The filters are made here at the manufacturing facility. These men are cross-trained in washing sand, making molds, installing filters and some have learned welding or learned to drive the delivery trucks. Some have been here since the very beginning. They are loyal and committed to serve their people.
We are disciplined. Keep in mind, I say ‘we’ collectively. I have only been here two weeks; yet feel very much included and part of the CWH family. Work starts promptly at 6:30am. We are called by Chris, our Director to form a circle and we pray together, Chris reads a verse and Evens, our Foreman gives out the assignments for the day. Leslie and now me take attendance. If someone is 5 minutes late, they are docked 30 minutes. This is the employees’ rule. Their discipline. They are strong together and if someone slips, it breaks the chain. The guys hold each other accountable to be the best they can be.
The Rolling’s manage the mission under Biblical principles. Respect, truth and integrity are non-negotiable here. We have a tight schedule, we are effective, efficient and always finding ways to improve. There are filters to make; the people are counting on us so they have clean water. There is a sense of pride, instilled by Chris and Leslie. They lead by example, with their faith, their marriage and their family values. The men working here are better for it.
We believe in sharing. In December, we are hosting Training Classes to spread our knowledge and expertise in this field with other water missions in Haiti. We improve our distribution numbers and help other missions utilize the bio-sand water filtration system and teach WASH. Everyone benefits.
The challenges are great. Life in Haiti is not easy, for anyone. The mission is clear; everything is vetted through three pillars. Empowering. Improving. Sustaining. It’s a good strategy, it’s working. And the plans to grow are vast.
I am pleased to be here. Excited about what I can contribute. Looking forward to what I will learn. I will be better for it too!
written by kim snyder 3rd November 2017