Chapoteau, Haiti

The St. Timothy’s Chapoteau, Haiti Ministry supports the children of St. Mathieu’s school in the Central Plateau region of Haiti, the poorest area of the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere. Our focus is on education and infrastructure:

  • We directly sponsor 25 primary school students, supplying uniforms, tuition, backpacks, and books, at a cost of $500 per student per year
  • We financially support the teachers and school operation
  • We have undertaken school building projects like latrine construction and meter garden cultivation
  • Recently, we added scholarship support for a University student
  • This year we are looking to add financial support for a student from Chapoteau to attend Secondary school upon graduation from St. Mathieu’s at a cost of $600 per year

 

The Mission Trip

We send a mission team to Chapoteau yearly, usually the second week in November. The mission trip serves multiple vital functions:

1) It enables face-to-face communication and information gathering about the needs and status of the people and school in Chapoteau, a vital component to our outreach given the language barrier;

2) It allows us to network and make connections with other organizations and groups also performing mission work in the area and coordinate our efforts;

3)  It furthers the connection we have to our Haitian brothers and sisters – team members serve as the representative faces of the people back home who continually remember, support, and pray for the people of Chapoteau. It is clear that being physically present is deeply meaningful.

4) It allows us to introduce new people in the U.S. to the people of Chapoteau. It is important that people have the opportunity to visit Haiti and experience for a short time the lives of those who are part of the body of Christ but living in such different circumstances.

St. Timothy’s sent it’s first team to Chapoteau in 2011, and has gone yearly since then. We stay in Cange; the Central Plateau region of Haiti several hours by car from Port au Prince. The Village of Chapoteau is cut off from any roads or direct access by Lake Pelig, a lake formed by the hydroelectric dam on the Artibonite River. To reach Chapoteau, the team travels by car from Cange to Pelig, by boat across the lake, then by foot up the mountain on the other side to St. Matthieu’s school. The team spends a day in Chapoteau visiting with the students and talking with the teachers and the school director, Jacob Renaud about the school’s status, needs and priorities. The team asks questions and learns as much as possible about what is necessary to accomplish various goals, so it can convey that information back to non-traveling Chapoteau Ministry members to assist with setting fundraising goals and priorities.

The 2013 Team: Our host Pere Milor, Chris Brock, Bob Henry,  Mirabelais outreach coordinator  Annie McDonough, Craig Dubishar, Genevieve Zetlan, and driver Bouchou
The 2013 Team: Our host Pere Milor, Chris Brock, Bob Henry, Mirabelais outreach coordinator Annie McDonough, Craig Dubishar, Genevieve Zetlan, and driver Bouchou
The school director Jacob (left) and the teachers meet with the mission team in one of the classrooms to discuss the school's status, their priorities and needs.
The school director Jacob (left) and the teachers meet with the mission team in one of the classrooms to discuss the school’s status, their priorities and needs.

History

During 2010, St. Timothy’s was searching for a personal way to reach out to the people of Haiti. The Rev. Wisnel Dejardin, our then-Seminarian who is from Haiti, was completing his field studies at St. Timothy’s when the earthquake struck in January. Wisnel lost his brother and cousin in the quake, and was unable to return home in its aftermath. St. Timothy’s became his family, and Wisnel discussed with us ways that St. Timothy’s might provide support to his country. Wisnel himself is from the village of Chapoteau, and education is something he views as very important to improving the life of all Haitians. He recommended that instead of short-term relief efforts, we focus our efforts on long-term relationships with the children from his village. 

One year after beginning our relationship with the village of Chapoteau, St. Timothy’s began sending a Mission Team. Each year our involvement has deepened as we get to know the people there. We successfully conducted fundraising to build up the school’s infrastructure, added a University student scholarship, and are pursuing Secondary school opportunities for “our” children. 

If you are interested in staying informed about the mission to Chapoteau, or in joining a mission trip, please sign up to receive regular updates here, or send email to the Mission Team at teamhaiti@saint-timothys.org

Sponsorship of one year of Primary education is $500. To support a child’s education in Chapoteau, make checks payable to St. Timothy’s and write “Haiti School” on the memo line.