Carmeline stood with her feet at the edge of the water. She listened to it move on its own and felt the sunshine on her face. It was her first time at a beach, and she was beginning to feel restored physically and spiritually. She took a deep breath and returned to her coworkers, the caregivers at a Haiti children’s home.
Every year, as an expression of appreciation for what the caregivers do day in and day out for the children at the children’s home, Back2Back staff set aside days to connect with the caregivers and offer them respite and refreshment. Jimmy Francois, Back2Back staff, along with three other staff members, traveled to a beach retreat with the three caregivers from a Haiti children’s home.
Part of the time was a training with the staff psychologist and social worker. They focused on “connecting before correcting” and other trauma-informed principles that afford better care to each child served. They also spent time brainstorming ways to further develop activities in the home. These activities include involving the children in cooking, and playing soccer and dominos, all activities to grow their relationships.
The enjoyed a meal together, participated in worship led by Weekenson, Back2Back staff, and had time to relax on the beach by the water. Caremeline is the newest caregiver at the home, and she shared with staff, “I enjoyed myself and felt both spiritually and emotionally ‘filled back up.’”
Together, the staff and caregivers took this time to remember the why behind the hard work and difficult days. They were each reminded when we invest in one another, we provide better care to children.