OLQP has "twinned" with and supported Medor, a rural community of 40,000 spread over 74 miles in the mountains of central Haiti, since 1997. The Arlington church -- founded as the first black parish in the diocese 65 years ago and then integrated by supportive white Catholics in the 1960's -- has supported the construction of schools, clean water projects, health programs and a reforestation project. Medor has no electricity or running water, no sewage or trash disposal, impassable roads and inadequate agriculture. Like the rest of Haiti, the village has been devastated by a succession of hurricanes, earthquakes and now the deadly cholera epidemic this year.
Medor, although relatively unscathed by the first quake, experienced aftershocks in February that destroyed the primary school, clinic and severely damaged the church and many other buildings. Hundreds of refugees from Port au Prince and other areas relocated to Medor after the earthquake.
At least 40 people died of the cholera outbreak in Medor. OLQP parishioners donated and prepared 4,000 rehydration packets, which RAM transported and dropped via parachuters into the village in December along with tens of thousands of dollars of donated medications and medical supplies.
The OLQP Haiti Committee is committed to facilitating and supporting a linkage of our parish with our sister parish, St. Joseph's in Medor, Haiti. This linkage strengthens our longstanding commitment to social justice in a personal way by creating lasting relationships with the people of Medor. Since our beginning in 1997, we have welcomed small delegations from Medor and have also sent delegations of OLQP parishioners to the village. These visitations help us listen to the needs of the people and enable us to aid them in the way they wish.
The people of OLQP have helped to build a church, a new primary and secondary school and continue to support the expense of school and clinic and related staff members. In addition OLQP funds the school lunch program that feeds over 1250 children each day, the parish is also supporting clean water, sanitation and reforestation initiatives in the Medor area. Our main thrust is helping the people of Medor to raise their own economic standard of living. We continue to explore ways in which we can deepen the personal and spiritual relationship between the people of OLQP and the people of Medor.
Medor Fact Sheet
Medor Haiti Photo Album
Haiti Article in the Advocate Newsletter
'Haiti is where my heart is', Arlington Catholic Herald, 11/9/2011
To support OLQP's efforts in Medor, please send checks to the OLQP Haiti Committee, 2700 South 19th Street, Arlington, VA 22204, or make a secure online donation by clicking on "Donate to Medor Haiti" above.
More Resources on Haiti