I logged onto Facebook one morning a few weeks ago and in my newsfeed saw a video link a friend had posted; it was entitled Young Artists For Haiti - Wavin' Flag. I'm sure many have already seen this by now but if you haven't, check it out.
I can't put my finger on just what it was, but something in the video really touched my heart and I immediately knew I had to go to Haiti to help. A friend of mine, Julia (I think you'll hear a lot about here in this blog since she has quickly become my partner in crime when it comes to traveling) had told me of her plans to go to Haiti in September. Her plan was to buy a one way ticket and stay indefinitely. I called her right away and made plans to meet her there for the month of October.
Later that day, Julia and I met up to go to the movies. As Julia and I stood in line to see Alice In Wonderland 3D our conversation turned to past travels, and aspirations for the coming years. During that 90 minutes in line (yes, we waited that long, and to top it off, I fell asleep during the flick!) we birthed the idea of a non-profit travel organization.
Each of us are frequently approached by friends with questions about how to get involved with volunteering around the world. We have both had the opportunity to travel extensively and have worked with organizations in many countries. Our idea is still very much in its birthing stage and not yet launched, but even so, I'll tell you a little bit about it.
Love Travels will provide guidance to people who are interested in traveling with the purpose of learning about the people and history of the region, as well as baring witness to the current struggles in that area. We will be partnered with organizations around the globe who are making a difference in their local communities in order to ensure the people we send will be helping in practical ways.
It was two days later when Joe, the Pastor of The Embassy, approached us with the idea of sending a team to Haiti to help with relief efforts. He hadn't heard about Love Travels yet, since it's still being formed, but Julia and I saw this as an opportunity to put our ideas to action before officially launching our newest endeavor.
We spent two weeks getting in touch with organizations in Haiti, putting together an application package, generating interest, and developing what we believe will be a successful orientation and debriefing.
We will be taking a team of around 12 people to help with building initiatives and delivering relief packs to families in need. I'm excited to share that we've sent out the application packages to the 20+ people who have shown an interest in joining the team!! I can't wait to get the interviews going, select the team, and begin the orientation.
This is the cover we designed for the application package...