Our Haitian missionary friend and mentor, Luther Hansley used to remind us that “In Haiti you must remain flexible…because if you are not flexible Haiti will break you!” Don’t have a ladder…make one with branches; missing a tube repair kit,…use string to patch a bike tire. With electrical power often shut off for days at a time, or roads that are closed because of a flood, our Haitian brothers and sisters have learned to adapt and remain flexible in order to engage in a fully alive life. This adaptive approach has been important for our work at Haiti H20 as well.
As our director, Sarah Vander Molen has carefully laid the scaffolding for our little steamship of a mission organization. On top of managing her household of five, she has faithfully managed the work of steering our organization and administrating the many details—from mission trips to board meetings to implementing the Pittsburgh Marathon Fundraiser. She has truly mastered the art of adaptation-along-the-way and we are grateful for her service to Haiti H2O. Thank you Sarah!
We are now at another crossroad that invites adaptive change. Sarah realizes that to better serve her family and Haiti H20 it is time for her to step down as director. She will continue on serving Haiti H20 as overseeing the Pittsburgh Marathon Fundraiser, but will transition out of the director of Haiti H20 in the next couple of months. Those are some big shoes to fill, but we are confident that this opportunity will again be an opportunity to grow and develop as we adapt to additional leadership and transition.
As President of the Board, I want to thank Sarah for her amazing service and joyful work on behalf of Haiti H20. Her enthusiasm and love for Haiti has offered us a deep rudder that has enabled us to steer this organization towards hope. Please be in prayer with us as we try to fill this Director position in this New Year. We are very excited for new opportunities that invite us to grow in our partnership in Haiti. If you have someone who comes to mind and heart please don’t hesitate to contact us via email. We have included a job description on the website for possible applicants. Again, please take a moment to let Sarah know how much you appreciate her important work here at HaitiH20.
A little over ten years ago, Jeff and Sarah approached me with a great idea. Let’s start a mission organization that can serve as an umbrella organization for Luther to do his mission work. Since the three of us had led trips with Luther for many years,… well this seemed like a no brainer. We put some big ideas on paper and jumped through the hoops and finally became a licensed 501c3 non-profit. But around the birth of Haiti H20, Luther sadly informed us that he and Carol were finishing their 18 years of work in Haiti. We were left with a shiny new mission organization with no missionary. We had to adapt.
This unplanned occurrence invited us to think differently about what we actually had going for us. Instead of relying on our western model of mission with a foreign missionary living in country, we stumbled on the divine truth that we had Haitian friends who actually lived there and remained there and were capable to lead and guide this important work. We had our eyes open to the incredibly talented community leaders who had dreams and visions for their own communities. So adapting along the way, together we engaged in conversations with our Haitian partners to think differently about how to do short term mission in a long term way.
Doug Bradbury Board President, Haiti H2O
Assistant Professor of Biblical Studies, Geneva College