Building Up Jamaica Families
Two separate groups traveled from Holy Child this past spring, not just for fun, but for a larger purpose…absorbing culture and helping others.
Before they traveled to Jamaica to work with the group from Food for the Poor, the students raised more than $6,000 to build a house. It was a life-changing event for the family who had a new home, and also for the students who saw life in a new way. Here is one student’s take on the journey.
I love my Jamaica. Jamaica loves me.
This is a line from a poem that children from a school we visited recited to us. It sums up my experience of Jamaica quite well. My Jamaica wasn’t just a vacation or a beautiful beach. My Jamaica wasn’t even about me.
Living such a privileged life here in the United States, having a safe shelter had always been something that I’d taken for granted. However, helping to build a house in Jamaica, I saw the real impact that even a small home can have on a family’s life. The gratitude that the Russell family expressed to us was evidence to me that the work we were doing was a way to show Christ to others.
Personally, the most impactful part of the experience was visiting Gift of Hope, a home for those with disabilities ranging from autism to cerebral palsy. There I literally saw the face of Joy. Joy is a four-year-old girl who has cerebral palsy. Her name suited her well–she had the brightest smile I have ever seen. Even though she couldn’t speak, we had a connection that didn’t require words. She sat there holding my hand and playing with my nametag. Spending time with Joy, I finally understood the true meaning of the trip. I was there not only to show the face of God to others, but also to let others show the face of God to me. I love my Jamaica. Jamaica loves me.
– Isabelle Tyshing ’16