Groundwork Report

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For report back on July 2011 ground work preparation trip read on below:

July 2011 Groundwork Trip

Our recent journey to build with our partners in Ayiti was an incredible success! Naima and Angelique returned to Haiti July 13-20th to continue building with the community in which we are working and strengthen the plan for Ayiti Resurrect‘s second delegation in January 2012. The trip was ripe with reconnection and excitement for the next stages of this experiment in self-determination, inter-diasporic collaboration, spiritual healing, and community empowerment!

We were blessed to begin and end our journey with Ujaama Works: Mawiyah Michuad, Madame Wilner, and Dr. Robert Francois, who are truly becoming family. They are humble and hard working group of healers, spirit mediums, cultural workers based in Port-Au-Prince who do youth advocacy, sustainable development and natural traditional medicine all over the country. We partnered with them during the last delegation to initiate a mental wellness clinic in Comier and are fortunate to be deepening our relationship. They will be returning with us in January to continue the healing work through the mental wellness clinic.

We also reconnected with Jean-Baptiste, an artist and community organizer who also works with World Water Relief. Jean-Baptiste met up with us day one in Port-Au-Prince, and joined us to help with translation and community building. We were a great team!

During our time in Comier, we had several meetings with community members and leaders discussing extensively how to make the next delegation a huge success. We discussed the vision, logistics and strategies for January’s programming, and asked a lot of questions to make sure that our plan is securely grounded in these needs and realities of the community.¬†We had really productive meetings with two leaders and 8 members of the Mango Growers Association (Assocation Planteur Mango de Komier Leogane), one of our main partners in Comier. We put into motion a solid plan for implementing art/music/dance therapy, yoga and mediation workshops, permaculture and composting skill-shares, a mental wellness clinic, women’s group, and commemoration honoring the 2nd anniversary of the earthquake.

Additionally, we hosted an open meeting to provide Comier residents the opportunity to meet with us and discuss the ideas and planning for January 2012. Over 60 people participated in this meeting, giving us the opportunity to come face to face with community members we had yet to meet, and to establish further connections with artists and farmers in Comier who we worked with during the last delegation. Representatives from various community organizations attended the meeting, from a women’s group to the Peasant Movement, and were all very interested in collaborating with Ayiti Resurrect to advance the next stage of the mission! Some of the highlights from this opening meeting include: 1) enthusiastic affirmation from many people about the plan for programming; 2) generating concrete ideas for workshops and skill sharing; 2) establishing interest from specific community members who want to help facilitate workshops or volunteer during the events; 3) confirmation that the community wants to engage in and exchange around building sustainable programming that will continue after Ayiti Resurrect delegates leave.

All the meetings that took place over the week were truly inspired gatherings of hearts and minds that have given Ayiti Resurrect even more focus and determination to continue this work! We wanted to ensure the community of Comier and our partners in Haiti that we are returning to fulfill what we began with our first delegation. Naima and Angelique feel fortunate to have made this journey, forge our plan, and deepen this commitment.

The community’s needs, desires, skills, and offerings are now solidly integrated into what we envision being a truly collaborative process for our next delegation. We are planning for powerful skill-sharing, curriculum development, and co-facilitation prep among our partners on the ground and our international delegates, followed by a week of workshops, activities, and counseling sessions aimed to promote spiritual, emotional, and psychological healing for Comier residents.

In order to make all this happen, we will be doing major fundraising drives and hosting fundraising events in both New York and Oakland this fall. We need all the support we can get during the next few months as we develop our planning, confirm and build with our delegate team, and search for resources we need to make it all happen! Please keep AYITI RESURRECT in your thoughts, meditations, and prayers. And support us in any way you can!

View pictures from our journey Here

Many thanks to all those who made our successful ground building trip possible, including Mawiyah Michuad, Robert Francios, Madame Wilner, Jean-Baptiste Jean Wisnel, Fritz and Paul Pierre-Louis, Jimmy Sanon, and Louis Noncent.

AND so much gratitude for all of the support, prayers, and donations we have received so far!!! Please look out for our GIVE THANKS page soon to be published, and stay tuned for more updates and details about our next delegation, and more ways you can support very soon!

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