Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Depot: Reflexes In Training

I have been super busy lately! So busy. There have been a lot of visits from adoptive families, but I don't get to see them, since they are all staying at Kenscoff (the other orphanage in the mountains). Just because I don't get to see them, doesn't mean there's no work to do. In fact, every time an adoptive parent comes to visit Haiti, there's a reason. Not just for visiting their children, but to attend important meetings/hearings throughout the adoption process. Usually the very first meeting for the adoptive parents is the I-600. This takes place at the American Embassy here in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The meeting has been scheduled ahead of time and it is I, who prepare all the necessary paperwork for the parents to bring to the embassy with them on the day of their appointment. There are a lot of documents to translate (English and French), pictures to scan, and documents to copy. I always feel very fulfilled every time I get an I-600 file ready for the adoptive parents. I makes me feel good that I am helping the child and adoptive parents advance in their adoption process.

So that's what I have been up to at the office lately! On top of all the other duties I have to do! One thing new that I have been doing is going to the depot with the adolescents. The depot is where the foundation stores donation boxes. There usually is a container of donations from the States that comes in every couple of months. We store all the clothing, food, school supplies, and other miscellaneous materials in the two depots at the Lamardelle orphanage. The adolescents have been needing new clothing and materials, so I have been accompanying them in searching for what they want in the depot. It is quite an adventure it itself. There are boxes from floor to ceiling. It has not been completely organized, so it is quite hard to find what you need. Especially when there are limited sunlight that shines through the depot. When I am in the depot, it reminds me of being in an old thrift store's backroom....the one where they store all donations that have not been sorted or cleaned yet.

There are many surprises that come from searching in the depot, some good and some are just down right spooky!!! I mean, yeah bugs are all over the clothing and tons of dust, and then there's one or two dead mice in the mix, as well. You will be searching for clothing and digging your hand into the cardboard boxes. All of a sudden you feel this moist and hairy thing between the clothing....yeah...it's definitely not in style this season....that is for sure. A trip to the depot definitely makes you practice your body's reflexes and at times, gag reflexes, as well. Let's just say there was an opened wooden box of marinated fish that was in the depot. From a closer look, you can't tell the difference between the pieces of fish that has fallen off the body from the dead flies carcasses that lay on top of it. Eh....

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