Sunday, November 22, 2015

Do Children in Haiti Really Need Shoes? howFar Says "Yes"

A few weeks ago I read an article bashing organizations that provide shoes for children in third world countries. The writer asked questions like, "Do kids really need shoes? Wouldn't it better to buy them food or provide an education?"
The answer to these questions is "Yes". Children in countries like Haiti, where howFar has started a new health and education initiative, need both.

Diane Moffi, howFar's Haiti Director, with children in Port-au-Prince.

According to USAID, (NTD's) Neglected Tropical Diseases such as the mosquito-borne lymphatic filariasis (LF) and soil-transmitted helminths (STH, commonly referred to as intestinal worms) are endemic throughout the country. These NTDs cause chronic suffering, disability, compromised mental and physical development.
But these NTDs can be controlled and even eliminated through a cost-effective public health intervention known as mass drug administration combined with the distribution of well-fitting sturdy shoes.
"The new shoes not only protect feet from cuts and abrasions that can become infected, they also provide a secondary measure against soil transmitted helminths (STH). These intestinal parasites are endemic throughout Haiti and are usually transmitted through contact with contaminated soil or water. STH can produce a wide range of symptoms including intestinal manifestations (such as diarrhea and abdominal pain), general malaise and weakness that may affect working and learning capacities, and impair physical growth. 
Shoes provide a much-needed barrier between the feet and contaminated soil or water. In addition, shoes help prevent hookworm—which affects an estimated 740 million people globally, according to a World Health Organization estimate. 
In a country where there is often no money for new shoes, and footwear is often inherited without much regard to size, shoes that fit well are even better; they help to prevent injuries as well as blisters that can easily become infected. And in Haiti, shoes are required for school enrollment." 

Source: USAID Frontlines. Drug-Shoe Combination Aims to Stomp Out Haiti’s Neglected Diseases.  

howFar has joined in Haiti's fight to eliminate these debilitating diseases. A team of sixteen, led by howFar's Haiti Project Director, Diane Moffi, will distribute 400 pairs of shoes to orphans. But they are not just any shoes!

Jeff Webb visits orphans on a recent trip to Haiti

Jeff Webb, a howFar partner committed to sharing Christ's love in Haiti, has spearheaded efforts to raise money to purchase 400 pairs of The Shoe That Grows. 

The team at The Shoe That Grows has invented a shoe that grows with a child and lasts 5 years! Take a look at their website for the full story.

"Thank You" to everyone who donated to make this shoe distribution possible. Because of your generosity, Diane, Jeff, and their team will give this gift of shoes to orphaned children in Haiti which will help them stay healthy and be able to attend school. And they will hear the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Gifts that may just change the course of their entire lives!

howFar will you go?

Thursday, November 5, 2015

howFar Orphans

With your partnership The How Far Foundation cares for 120 war orphans. Watch for a major announcement coming soon! howFar will you go?