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Haiti: Heartline Ministries
Heartline in Haiti
Abundant and ripe mangoes, humidly hot heat, rolling mountains hills and cool beaches are not all the characteristic of Haiti. Neither is the fact that the country suffered a 7.0 magnitude earthquake in Jan. 2010, resonating in Port-au-Prince, causing destruction in its wake.
When arriving in the international airport, construction and development is in sight as the heated air envelopes the senses.
Haiti is in the process of rebuilding its community and Heartline Ministries is helping.
How it began
John McHoul, a Brooklyn native, started Heartline Ministries over 20 years ago with his wife, Beth. They began an adoption process for Haitian children.
“But I saw a need for jobs,” McHoul said.
The reason children were being put into orphanages was not because their mothers or fathers dying, “because they did not have money to support them," he said.
Sewing, Jewelry and Cooking School
McHoul and his wife, Beth, started a sewing school for Haitian women, teaching them about beading and making purses and bags.
“We buy the jewelry and purses they make from them and sell them in our store, “Haitian Creations,” McHoul said.
The women receive 35 percent of the profit their artwork sells for in the shop, “which is a nice salary in Haiti,” McHoul said.
After the earthquake in 2010, the need for medical care rose among pregnant women.
Corinne, a secretary for McHoul, was pregnant during the earthquake.
“I thought Jesus was coming back,” she laughed.
The Maternity Center began with birthing classes and teaching woman how to take care of their child.
“Many women are told that they should not breast-feed their children,” McHoul said. They believe keeping their child small is best,” but then they see a woman and her child who is big and healthy, “and they get upset,” he said.
Heartline mostly takes in teenage girls, "we either are referred to them by a friend or they come to us," McHoul said.
Impact and Current Projects
Adema, the manager of the Maternity center, loves working for the McHouls. “They are caring,” she said.
Heartline is also working on land they recently bought called “OK.”
“We are building a bakery to give jobs to twelve men and disciple them,” McHoul says there are many men who abuse their wives and sometimes leave them on the streets.
“Discipling men will help them realize they do not have to live that way,” he said.