In Jacmel and Grand Goave, Haiti, an all-day event unfolded in 2023 that brought smiles, laughter, and pure joy to the children and caregivers of Hands & Feet Project. This remarkable day was dedicated to celebrating the core values of love, honesty, obedience, and responsibility that define the spirit of our community. Join us on a journey through this heartwarming celebration that left everyone with cherished memories.
Morning Awards Ceremony
The festivities kicked off with an awards ceremony that recognized individuals who best embodied the values of our community. Medals and certificates were presented to children and adults who had demonstrated exceptional love, honesty, obedience, and responsibility throughout the year. The highlight of the ceremony was Jessica’s emotional reaction upon receiving the award for obedience, a moment that touched the hearts of everyone present. The atmosphere was filled with support and cheers as the children celebrated one another’s accomplishments.
Following the awards ceremony, the entire community gathered for a spirited staff vs. kids soccer game. The match was a source of great excitement as the children and caregivers alike cheered for their teams. The game ended with a resounding victory for the children, securing their bragging rights for the year. It was a morning of camaraderie, friendly competition, and infectious joy.
The afternoon was dedicated to a series of engaging activities, with four stations that corresponded to each of the four core values, along with an ice cream station and an icebreaker activity led by Maxime.
- Love: Blindfolded children faced the ultimate test of love by reaching into a box containing both beloved treats and unexpected surprises, challenging their trust and love for the community.
- Honesty: A game of wits ensued as children passed colored tokens in a circle, attempting to guess who held each token correctly. This station encouraged honesty and trust among the participants.
- Obedience: “Follow the Shepherd” became a thrilling game of trust and listening skills. Blindfolded “sheep” had to follow their “shepherds” through a field filled with distractions while listening for their shepherd’s voice.
- Responsibility: In “Protect the President,” children took on the roles of either the President or the Bodyguard. The aim was for the Bodyguard to shield the President from water balloon attacks launched by other participants, leading to soaking-wet but joyful chaos.
Ice Cream Delight and Icebreaker
Between these stations, everyone indulged in ice cream sundaes and enjoyed an icebreaker led by Maxime. The icebreaker added a fun twist as teams scrambled to arrange numbers in the correct order. The exuberant reactions of the participants reflected the joy of the day.
The Heart of the Event
Throughout the day, the children’s dedication to the values of love, honesty, obedience, and responsibility shone brightly. They wholeheartedly participated in every activity, and their boundless energy and enthusiasm made the event truly special.
Pizza Party and Dance Extravaganza
The event continued with a pizza party, where the hardworking young adults assisted with various tasks. They served food, managed games, and ensured the event’s smooth operation, embodying the essence of responsibility and teamwork. After dinner, the spotlight shifted to dance performances choreographed by several groups of children. DJ Walky Mix’s music turned the campus into a dance floor, and our entire community danced for hours, leaving behind all worries and enjoying the moment. Fireworks and glow sticks added to the festive atmosphere, and the night ended with a rousing rendition of “We Are the World.”
The Village Values 2023 event in Jacmel and Grand Goave was more than just a celebration; it was a testament to the strength of community, love, and shared values. It showcased the indomitable spirit of the children and caregivers of the Hands & Feet Project, who came together to create lasting memories of joy, unity, and togetherness. In a world filled with challenges, this day reminded everyone that simple moments of celebration and connection can make a world of difference.