Seasons Greetings, GLA Family and Friends! As Christmas draws near, marking the close of 2023, we want to take this opportunity to reflect on God's faithfulness and your dedication to supporting vulnerable children in Haiti this past year. Let me first say - thank you for your commitment to this mission of healthy children, empowered families, and stronger communities!
In February, as many of you know, GLA faced the abrupt challenge of evacuating our Fort Jacques facility amidst rapidly escalating gang violence in the area. We safely transported our children and some staff to southern Haiti through charter planes, relying on past relationships and timely coordination with IBESR (Haitian Social Services). We are tremendously grateful to our supporters and volunteers who eased this urgent transition. In the following weeks, as safety permitted, we strategically uninstalled and shipped critical infrastructure and equipment to our new southern location, working carefully to be good stewards of donations. Our children enrolled in a local Christian school as our leadership explored more permanent solutions for their care.
After connecting with organizations and individuals in the Sud Department, our board began evaluating options for long-term care, considering the unique needs of children who have spent years in institutional settings. This process led GLA to discover the growing movement around family-based care and empowerment, which aims to place children in homes with family-based care with appropriate training and support for families. We built a partnership with Overture Outreach International, drawing on their vast expertise in family reunification and support (over 250 reunifications and 170+ family support plan graduates).
Following extensive research, discussion, and prayer, the board of directors jointly approved pursuing family-based care for our remaining 38 children, utilizing our new collaboration with Overture to facilitate reunification. In late September, GLA, Overture, and IBESR formalized an agreement to reunify these children with biological and foster families.
As we close the year, I am thrilled to share that every child has begun their "Journey Home," the first phase of our Journey to 30 campaign. I hope you will consider coming alongside these families, helping equip them to welcome children into their homes and build self-sufficiency. Donating to the Journey Home creates a ripple effect of empowerment in Haiti.
With 2024 just around the corner, the reunification process is actively underway with intensive screening, counseling, training, and evaluation. We eagerly anticipate watching these children grow up in families in the years ahead and hope you will join us on this "Journey Home."
We invite you to continue following our Journey Home efforts through social media and our newsletter. In the new year, there will be more opportunities to learn and support these families through upcoming videos, interviews with Haitian social workers managing the transition, and other updates showcasing the rippling impact of family-based care. Please follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. Sign up for our monthly newsletter for the latest news and updates.
Looking for more information about reunification and the “Journey Home?” CLICK HERE