Friday, February 15, 2013

Why Haiti?

Hello all.  Thanks for taking the time to check out my blog.  I've never published anything online before, so bear with me in my first blogging attempt.  I am about to be forever changed, so I find documenting this point in my life to be the obligatory thing to do.  Some other objectives to this blog are to keep everyone updated on our work, tell my mother I'm still alive, and clarify to everyone what I'm really doing in Haiti.

For those of you that I haven't informed about this adventure, I'm taking a semester off to help found a school down in Haiti.  I've come to a point in my schooling where it no longer fulfills me.  I really want to do something worth doing, and school just isn't it right now.  For those of you who knew me in high school, you're probably thinking I'm crazy.  That Taylor Allis girl is quitting school?  Well no I'm not.  I certainly value my degree and have every intention to graduate.  I always thought graduating in 4 years was a huge deal, and that I would be a failure if I went any longer.  However, I've really prayed about this and have come to the conclusion that life isn't a race!  I'm 21 years old and have still got a whole life ahead of me to live.  What's so wrong with taking a few months that weren't a part of the original plan, and doing something so much cooler?  What sounds like it's going to make me a more well-rounded, educated individual:  Sitting in class learning how to do a math proof, or helping make a difference in the lives of others?  It all seemed kind of silly after God helped me put things into perspective.  Bottom line, say what you want but it no longer bothers me that I am choosing this opportunity over school.  Additionally, an experience like this will make me want to be a teacher that much more  the teacher I've always dreamed of being.  So don't worry, Dad.  I'm not quitting school.

A question that I get asked a lot is, "Why Haiti?"  I should probably explain how this whole idea got brought about.  First of all, it's always been my dream to teach abroad.  Graduating, finding a teaching job nearby, and ultimately settling into a place longterm has never appealed to me.  Combining  my love of travel and my love for teaching has always led me to want to teach overseas someday.  I've been looking into teaching abroad programs for years now.  Then a friend of mine came back from a trip to Haiti last summer and posed the question, "How would you like to become a founding teacher?"  I was obviously intrigued, but I didn't know how feasible that would really be.  This friend of mine travelled to Haiti on a medical mission with the non-profit organization Preventive Health Strategies.  He travelled with Dr. Annette Bosworth and Chad Haber, a couple who have been doing work down in Haiti for years.  They have recognized the considerable need for a school, and Chad has taken it upon himself to make that happen.  Basically, we had originally thought the school would be built by now and I could go teach for a semester.  But as it turns out, founding a school is NOT easy and many roadblocks have stood in the way of that goal.  As a future teacher and lover of education, I still really wanted to be involved in this project.  So I'm traveling to Haiti with the goal of bringing this school to life.  I really have no expectations and have no idea how I will be of service, but "every accomplishment starts with the decision to try."

I will try to keep everyone posted on my daily activities and any progress we're making.  I may have told some of you that I was only going to be on a 2-week trip to get my feet wet.  Now the plan is that we're not leaving until we get everything accomplished that we want to accomplish.  We have no return ticket and we have no idea when we'll be returning.  This is the type of adventure I live for.

What I'd like to ask from all of you is your support.  I've been told over and over again not to do this, but I really feel like it's something I'm called to do.  My mind is made up and I no longer need negativity and judgement from people  I need you to be there for me.  The unknown is a scary thing, and I would be lying to you if I wasn't a little afraid of how all of this will turn out.  So I appreciate that everyone is worried about me, but at the same time, how exciting is this?  I mean really.  Maybe it's okay to not have it all figured out.  Maybe I don't need answers right now to know that everything will work out in the end.  Embracing this unknown could help change the world, and that couldn't be a more exhilarating thought.

"Transformation always asks us to enter the unknown.  How you manage the unknown of your life is how you'll experience transformation." 
 Robert Ohotto

"He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life."
― Muhammad Ali

1 comment:

  1. I want you to know that you have my support, 100%! I pray for you and the wisdom of your young life which you take with you to Haiti! Just being there I am sure will be an experience of a lifetime! I admire your exuberance and your ability to challenge the status quo. Good luck with the school and embracing your experience! I have just put going to Haiti and be of some type of hands on support or help in my bucket list! Blessings, TJ!