From volunteer Savannah Scaffe
Everyone back at home knows how much I love to eat so before I tell you about the absolutely incredible day the Random Acts team had, I just have to say that every single thing I have eaten has been beyond delicious and I think that I’ve eaten my weight in Haitian food.
I think that I can speak on behalf of the Random Acts volunteers when I say that I can’t believe it is already Monday! We’ve clearly entered some sort of Haitian time warp.
Today, the RA team travelled to the Arts Creation Foundation for Children to learn the trades of the Jacmel children who frequent the colorful building. Upon entering the ACFFC, we were literally greeted with open arms and the most genuine smiles I think I have ever seen. We were guided upstairs to our workstations and our teachers. A few of the kids taught us how to make paper mâché bowls while others guided us through the art of mosaic bottles. Let me just say that whatever kind of artistic ability I thought that I had was quickly and completely destroyed when I started to work on my recycled bottle art. The mosaic team had to break out the first aid kit three times! Three times. Glass was flying, Band Aids were distributed and I think a little pride was lost. I watched one child artist take over one of our bottles and was in awe of her level of patience, dexterity and raw talent. The children were encouraging and supportive. They were the best teachers I could have ever asked for.
While I have been in Haiti, one voice has been stuck in my head. Before we left for Jacmel, the wonderful and generous Judy Hoffman told the group of volunteers to remember something. She told us that she is always hearing people say that the children of Haiti live with nothing, that they do not have anything. She looked at us and said that they have so much and that the children are gracious and filled with joy and lead vibrant lives. And she was right. The building was filled with the laughter of children and the rhythmic sound Jason’s guitar. The volunteers reunited with old ACFFC friends, the kids taught us songs and games, they braided hair and forever recorded their faces on our cameras and as I looked into the rooms, one thought consumed me: I didn’t know that a part of me was missing until I found the ACFFC.
I don’t think that I have the words to tell Cinde, Misha, Lisa, Phillip, Judy, Random Acts and all of the supporters how grateful I am for this opportunity. This trip has completely changed my life and I still can’t understand what I’m feeling. I am overwhelmed with joy and gratitude. The children have humbled me and I will forever feel at home at the ACFFC. The Arts Creation Foundation for Children is doing some of the most incredible work that I have ever witnessed and I cannot wait to continue their journey with them.