One Trip Inspires Dreams:
Laurie's Story of Impact
Laurie first gained a heart for those in need around the world years ago when her friends took a short-term trip to Haiti. Her eyes had been opened to the idea that anyone could visit the third world and spread God’s love, even her! She immediately gained a passion and a heart for Haiti. Laurie and her husband began to sponsor a Compassion Child there. She had a burden on her heart to meet her child face to face. When Laurie decided to take a trip to Haiti with GPPD in 2017, she asked our team if there was any possibility that she could see her Compassion child, and it ultimately worked out that they could meet.
When Laurie went off to Haiti in 2017, meeting her Compassion Child did not serve as her sole purpose on the trip. As the team was organized, the trip leader asked each team member what their gifts and talents were, so everyone could serve in a way they were gifted and passionate about. Laurie shared that she loved to cook, clean, craft and sew. She soon found out that Amber (GPPD Haiti Associate) had just purchased a new sewing machine, and the girls needed guidance on how to operate it. She was excited to guide these girls and use her gifts to teach them.
As soon as Laurie entered the Rev Home on her trip, she was immediately drawn to Desline, a young girl living in the Rev Home. Desline was shy and quiet, but Laurie was still able to talk to her and ask her questions about her interests and her future. Desline immediately responded, “Haiti is not like America, it’s not like girls can choose what we want to do with their future.”
When Laurie started teaching the girls how to operate their new sewing machine, another girl was so proud of herself when she completed sewing a small lavender pouch. The girl said that her previous school teacher criticized her sewing skills and told her that she could never make a living by sewing. At that moment, Laurie felt connected to all of the young women in the Rev Home and wanted to continue to teach these girls and help give them confidence in themselves and their futures. She especially felt that strong connection to Desline, and decided to begin sponsoring Desline after she returned to the states.
The next year, Laurie returned to Haiti and felt led to lead Bible study and worship with the Rev Home girls, and to make them feel special through God’s eyes, not just through their gifts and abilities. Laurie saw a huge difference and gained confidence in the young women when she returned that year. “Each year the girls get older, and Amber’s influence on the girls continues to change their attitude and feelings of empowerment to chase their dreams,” Laurie says. “Having women my age on these teams, help the girls know that they are cared for, empowers them to be self-supportive and gets them excited about their futures.”