Kristi Smith, Corky Terry and Jean arrived in Cap Haititan January 13 and were met by Father Leonex who is a Holy Cross priest. Father is the principal of Sainte Eugene de Mazenrod School in Forte Liberte. Corky and I had met him when we were visiting in September. Cork was able to send 30 tablet computers for his school which were donated by Denver Tech for All. Father Leonex picked us up as Father Adrien was in the Domincan Republic on a mission.
Kristi was impressed with our hotel and its close proximity to the school. Early that evening we met with Denex and his brother Edy who assessed our school and measured for shelving and the three tables for the sewing machines. The next day, the technician,Edam who makes the shelves and table tops arrived and measured again. We walked with Edam to the hardware store to buy supplies….it was a little over a mile and sunny and WARM! Edam completed the shelves the next day and the day after that the table top was completed…all with varnish finishes.
Our original teacher moved to Chile to be with her husband so Ms. Lede was recommended. She was interviewed and we decided she’d be great. She has her own sewing business and is very experienced and skilled at sewing. The classes will be in the afternoon three days a week, to accommodate Ms. Lede’s schedule. Ms. Lede was able to meet with Kristi to go over lesson plans and the working of the new Janome machines. The electricity in Forte Liberte is not reliable and strong enough for the school, consequently we have to use a generator. The problem with the generator is the cost of fuel and the noise, but the sewing machines work….life is a trade off. It would be wonderful to put solar in…on our wish list.
Five students started on Monday January 23,2017. The first day they learned how to thread the machine and sewing in straight lines. Kristi had small projects for the women to practice their skills and they seemed to enjoy the experience. Most of the fabric the students sewed on came from the Linen Kist in Avon Colorado and from Brenn Luff of Grand Junction Colorado and it is most appreciated!
We had a goat dinner to celebrate the school that evening. Everyone is happy with the project!