THANKSGIVING: “To do something, however small, is the most important step.”
Believe it or not, Thanksgiving is two days away. Although it has been a very difficult year for many of us, Thanksgiving Day always offers us an amazing opportunity to reflect and express gratitude for the often-overlooked blessings in our lives. Without a doubt, if you are able to read this newsletter, you are blessed in so many ways. And you may ask, how? According to one of my favorite authors, Anna Quindlen, the answer is very simple; one simply has to realize that life is the best thing ever, and you have no business taking it for granted. The people of Haiti understand this too well.
This year alone, the people of Haiti endured a 7.0 magnitude earthquake, a few tropical storms, and a cholera outbreak. Approximately 230,000 Haitians died in the quake, cholera related deaths have topped 1,100 lives so far, and hurricane Tomas killed 20 people. Despite the numerous tragedies and suffering that they endured this year, the people of Haiti are optimistic that they can overcome any obstacles. Indeed, part of that optimism stems from your generous support of International Action’s Campaign for Clean Water in Haiti.
Our heartfelt gratitude to the many of you who donated in response to the cholera outbreak. This past month, we protected the lives of 144,200 people from the deadly disease. Your support also enabled us to establish a small satellite office in the Artibonite Department, the epicenter of the cholera outbreak. In the past 3 weeks, our staff installed chlorinators in the following cities and communities: l’Estère, Desdunes, Mirebalais – Sarazin, Verettes, Croix-des-Bouquets, and Cité Soleil. In l’Estre and Desdunes alone, 115,000 people are no longer drinking contaminated water because of your donations.
International Action has expanded its response to the cholera outbreak by launching a soap distribution project. Over the past week, we distributed 1,500 bars of soap, which are absolutely critical to managing cholera. In an effort to economically empower the local soap vendors, we have opted to buy the soap locally. Many Haitians, especially in the rural communities, have praised this strategy and welcomed our soap distribution project in their communities.
On Thursday, many of you will be invited to join family or friends for a Thanksgiving meal. Some of you will be the hosts, joined by your loves ones in your homes to partake in the traditional Thanksgiving feast. International Action would like to take this opportunity to invite you to become a partner to the people of Haiti through our Campaign for Clean Water.
This Thanksgiving season, we encourage you to acknowledge the blessings in your life and consider passing them on. To do something, however small, is the most important step in giving back. Being on the receiving end of blessings is always a pleasant place to be, but don’t remain there forever. In countless ways, your response to our invitation will determine the number of people that can be reached with our lifesaving technology. This Thanksgiving season, you have the power to make a difference in the lives of the people of Haiti by providing them with the gift of the single most important nutrient of life – clean water. Please consider making a donation today.
Wesley & the International Action Team