A Quick Fix?

Posted Apr 12, 2011 by 2 Comments

Well, my time in Haiti is over.  Although it was a very short trip, it was truly a fantastic one!  While I was there I got to dive deep into Nehemiah Vision Ministries’ child sponsorship program and spend a lot of time with the wonderful people of Chambrun.

I am thrilled to announce that, as of the writing of this article, we have helped to secure 15 new sponsors for NVM!  Because these 15 families, groups and individuals are willing to support children in Chambrun, the readers of World Next Door are playing a significant role in the transformation of that community.

Poverty is not something that can be fixed quickly!

Now, our goal remains 25 sponsors, and I will continue to push for new ones whenever I have a chance. But before we bring the articles for this trip to a close, I want to share with you one final perspective I found fascinating on this trip…

Good Intentions

Please take a moment to watch this clip from a TV show called No Reservations (if you are really strapped for time, watch only the second half).  In the show, Anthony Bordain, a chef and travel writer, visits post-earthquake Haiti to sample some of the country’s cuisine.

What he accidentally discovers through an act of good-will is just how complex and difficult aid and development can be.

First of all, props to Mr. Bourdain for being so honest about the results of his actions.  Many Westerners insist on believing that everything they do is helping, rather than hurting.  It took quite a bit of humility to admit that his plan backfired!

But what he learned in going for the “quick-fix” was an extremely important lesson… there is no easy way to bring about change in Haiti.

Long Haulers

Because of NVM, this child has a future…

This, my friends, is why I am so impressed with the work of Nehemiah Vision Ministries.

They are not working for a “quick fix.”  In fact, most of the things NVM is doing in the village of Chambrun won’t bear real fruit for many years.

But they are not in it for instant, feel-good results.  Pastor Esperandieu and his team are “long-haulers.”  They are not doing relief. They are doing development.

Instead of simply handing out food or money, they are providing a generation of children a quality education.  Instead of coming in to do a couple of major evangelistic events, they are painstakingly building a congregation with its roots deep in the village community.  Instead of simply bandaging wounds and handing out painkillers, they are educating the people of Chambrun about how to stay healthy in the first place.

You get the picture.

Very little of what NVM does looks great on a spreadsheet.  Board meetings aren’t accompanied by skyrocketing graphs.

But although the children of Chambrun aren’t much better off now for knowing geography and long division, when they grow into adults they will be equipped to work and earn a living in ways their parents could have never dreamed.

Think About It

This is why I am excited about child sponsorships.  Instead of pouring our money into an endless string of “quick-fixes,” we now have the opportunity to invest in a ministry that is truly in it for the long-haul!

Are you willing to be a part of the development of Chambrun?

So think about it.  If you haven’t already, take a look at the many children in Chambrun that are still awaiting sponsors by clicking here.

Pray and consider… Are you being called to invest in the work of NVM?


Anthony Bordain learned the hard way that there is no easy answer to the poverty of a country like Haiti.  But I wonder… How would his perspective have changed if he’d eaten rice and beans with the kids of Nehemiah Vision Ministries?

It wouldn’t exactly be gourmet cuisine, but I guarantee you of one thing… it would be a meal he’d never forget!

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Next Steps
    • We are still looking for 10 more child sponsors for NVM. Would you consider being one of them? Click here for more information.
    • Help us spread the word about NVM’s child-sponsorship program. Do you know anyone that would be interested in hearing about the “long-haulers” in Chambrun?
    • Please pray that NVM continues to receive new sponsors regularly. The more sponsors they have, the more children they can teach!
    Next Steps

About the Author: Barry is the founder and Executive Director of World Next Door. A storyteller, traveller and giant nerd, he lives to compel suburban Americans to get engaged with social justice and find their place in God's kingdom revolution. His ultimate dream is to adopt a pet monkey named Kevin.

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  1. Annie said... 


    April 13th, 2011 at 2:30 am  

    It is amazing how fine the line of humanity is between heart and head. Trying to figure out which one is best is such a struggle. I pray his visit stirred some hearts to help in the long term for Haiti.

  2. Steve Heiniger said... 


    April 16th, 2011 at 7:40 am  

    Great video on when helping sometimes hurts. Always something to keep in the back of your mind when thinking about aid.

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