Editor’s Note: Each month, we mail an article with our contribution statements to the previous month’s donors. Click here to download a PDF version.

Written by Sarah Corson, SIFAT co-founder

In 2010, Samuel graduated from SIFAT. Since then, he has been teaching his people in Haiti the things he learned about growing more food and purifying their water. In 2019, SIFAT funded his first proposal to help 50 women get food security for their families by learning better agricultural techniques and working together to help each other. These women worked hard together, prayed together and believed that God would help them. The project was successful, and the women grew enough vegetables to eat with extra to sell. They could pay school fees for their children and buy things for their families.

Samuel (left) is making a difference in his community by providing agricultural training for women in rural communities.

More than five years later, they are still succeeding in their agricultural co-op. Their gardens have become sustainable.  They have helped Samuel start other agricultural projects in communities where children are hungry and cannot go to school.  University students studying agronomy have visited Samuel to see his successful projects.

But in recent years, a bigger challenge has arisen. Haiti is experiencing a terrible situation because of gangs and violence originating in the capital, Port-au-Prince. The gangs virtually rule the capital and the area around it. Women and children are fleeing this violence by escaping into the more remote hills, where Samuel lives and serves. Samuel is helping these families settle among the communities participating in his projects. The women who were once so desperate themselves are sharing what they have to help these refugees.

Samuel’s projects have been successful! The women are growing more than enough food for their families, so they are able to sell the extra for profit to help support their children.

A recent letter from Samuel describes the situation: “I received 30 women and their children today, crying, because gang violence and guns made them leave their homes. I accompanied them to stay in Jannot, where we are working an agricultural project. I wanted to make sure that these families leave the difficulty of finding a place to stay and to get food and clean water to drink. I prayed with them a lot and let them know that we will bring them together with the community to work together. The women and children of Jannot cried because of the great pain and sorrow in their hearts when they saw that these refugees have nothing. I told the new families not to be discouraged. The women of Jannot have already found a small piece of land that other families there have set aside for them to make their own gardens in the future to solve the problem of hunger and poverty.” Until these refugees can get their gardens growing, Samuel and the people he works with are sharing what they have, so that all will have something to eat.

Because of violence in the capital city, families are escaping to rural areas. Ladies from Samuel’s training programs are sharing their knowledge and helping the new families settle into their new homes.

Samuel is working on the fifth agricultural project. When this one begins to produce, there will be five communities he has helped train in agriculture techniques. He has helped more than 250 families go from utter starvation to having sufficient food for their family and enough money to send their children to school. How can people who are still very poor and have families to support still share with so many refugees in Haiti now? I believe the answer is because when Samuel works with the people, he takes them spiritual bread, as well as physical food. Each week, he visits the women’s fields, and once a month, all the women in the community meet together to discuss their problems and their plans for overcoming. He teaches them about the love of God, and they feel that love in Samuel. They pray together often, because they have learned from Samuel that they have a Heavenly Father who suffers with them and will empower them to work and help their families. We have a lot to learn from Samuel’s example, too!

Your support of our projects makes a difference in the communities in which our graduates live and serve! Thank you for providing seed money for their projects.

Some of you have helped SIFAT raise the funds to get these groups started—the “seed money”—that they have used to build a small economic base that is supporting them. I cannot remember all the times Samuel has written SIFAT saying Thank You! He says the women ask him to tell SIFAT thank you, and he also says thank you for himself, because he would be hurting so badly if he could not do something to help. Every letter he writes is praising God because we can work together to be the hands of Jesus in these tragedies. We want to say thank you for supporting SIFAT. You pray for us and for Samuel, as well as for all our graduates throughout the world and the hurting people with whom they are working. Thank you for praying with us and, like the women of Jannot, sharing with SIFAT, so that we can share with Samuel, and he can share with those in need.

For more information on our International Graduates’ Projects, click here. You can read profiles about past projects as you pray for our graduates, as well as see new projects that will be added in the coming month.

Visit our international projects page to learn more about our graduates’ projects around the world.