Day 8: Tie your shoes

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Breakfast was served late, making me wonder if we were having a lazy morning or if they were serious about us painting the house. Come to find out, they were serious about us painting. After a quick cereal breakfast we heard that tomorrow we were going to do a shoe drive for nearly 30 families from our census. I was so excited! Thankfully us girls volunteered to help with that so the boys were sent off to paint. Unfortunately Ben tore his ACL and Micah and Josh both have headaches and the runs so painting is not the best idea for them.

We were ushered into Gertchewd’s bedroom where hundreds and hundreds of shoes were stored in boxes about to fall apart.The task at hand? Sort the shoes into sizes, then lace up each pair and find its partner shoe. Finally, set up a store like counters so the people of Jubilee can come pick out new shoes. Easy enough? Reread that task list- LACE the shoes. There were at least 1,000 shoes and only a handful were laced. All the rest were new shoes that looked old because they were dusty and dirty from being stored in boxes for years. It was no easy task. We began by sorting them into sections, girls infant through 11, then size 12 (because there was a MASSIVE box full of just size 12), 3-6 and so on for the boys too. Then we seperated the audlt shoes. Gertrude and another man helped us, but they were almost more work than help because they were too lazy to lace the shoes so they would try and pass them by without lacing them. We would then have to go through and check each one they did to make sure it was laced and the size they had said it was. Needless to say the entire process too us almost all day. I am happy to report however, that the room is set up nicely and I am sitting near a fan currently.

Being able to help out with donating shoes is going to make up for us not being able to hand out stuff to the kids. I have been wanting to give them stuff since coming and it has been tough standing by Emery’s rule. I am very pleased with Ken and Rich for working their butts off with this census. Without it no real helping program can be put into place because we need an accountability system. The end result of this census will be a picture with the entire haitian family living in the home along with their names and ages. This information along with the picture goes on lamentated cards that the people will bring to Emerys house when we have a drive or they need something (i.e. the shoes tomorrow). We can then keep an accurate record of who has gotten what and when so that they do not try to cheat the system and everyone gets equal help.

After a quick nap in front of the fan I was awoken to the sound of boxes moving. Jesse and Emery had emptied the hallway and I was assigned to help (along with Hope) to put together care packages that included food, soap, toothbrushes, clothes, ribbons, jewelry and other miscellaneous items. It took another hour or two and we even were able to make infant packages for those with new babies. But truthfully with the kids we saw tomorrow, even 1 and 2 year olds could wear those clothes easily.

I am super excited about tonight because it is laundry night and better yet, I am taking out my braids and showering a good shower after a long, hot, dusty day. Emery is grilling chicken, so I know a good dinner is about to be served.

I am even more excited about tomorrow and the shoe drive. I hope we have a good turn out!

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