Fr. John Baumann, PICO Founder, and Ron Snyder, Director of International Organizing, conducted a five day site visit with clergy and leaders who are building the PICO effort in Haiti.
Leaders from Organisation Peuple Œcuménique du Nord-Est (OPODNE) Local Organizing Committees are articulating the vision and need for the organization with real clarity. They see what they are doing as strikingly different from other NGOs – doing for themselves rather than being dependent on others. Board member Florcie from Terrier Rouge expressed it this way: “Others have come and trained leaders to expect charity. They pay people to come to meetings. When they leave, there is nothing left. I would not participate in OPODNE if I didn’t believe that we will be different. We want to be a model”.
Ron Snyder says, “We came with two questions: Can Haiti make it? and, Is organizing viable and sustainable in Haiti? We left with the conclusion that organizing is a risk, but a powerful instrument to rebuild Haiti. We are convinced that people we met with have the will to take the risk and will provide the model for political and economic reconstruction that Haiti needs.”