Our Program is for Natacha

By Beth McHoul

Natacha has been in our lives for a long time. She was orphaned at the age of 10 when her dad drowned. He was one of the many victims on the commuter Jeremie boat that sank several years ago. (Click here to read about that tragedy.) Natacha's mom died prior to her father but Natacha isn't clear on what happened. "It was voodoo powder", she says.

After their father died, Natacha and her little sister Nedeje went to live in an orphanage in Port-au-Prince. As a troubled teen Tachi was asked to leave the orphanage. Not unlike other troubled teens here and in the USA, she got pregnant.

Natacha delivered her baby girl in a small hut without a skilled attendant. She really loved her little girl but as a teen without support or teachers, she had no parenting skills and no way to provide for her daughter. She first came to us asking us to take her daughter into the adoption program. Her daughter was placed into the children's home and Natacha ended up staying with us and has never really left.

Tachi and my daughter Morgan became best friends over the years. They mixed their conversations with Creole and English giggling and acting like teenagers together. They love each other still and look forward to visits in Haiti a couple of times each year. Natacha has been employed at our boys house as a night nanny for a number of years.

About a year ago Natasha announced that she had a boyfriend. I gave her the purity lectures and warnings. I am a mother figure in her life. I hoped she could be spared more disappointment. I prayed she would make wise choices.

Here is an orphaned girl with huge losses in her life. She lost both parents, grew up in an overcrowded understaffed orphanage, gave up her first born child, lost her best friend to the States, and is not on speaking terms with her little sister. After such losses - of course she would be victim to a smooth talking boyfriend who said he wanted a family. He told her he would marry her but he wanted her to have "his" child first. She caved. She believed him.Our daughter Morgan came home for a visit earlier this year. Tachi whispered to Morgan that she might be pregnant. Morgan cautioned her to get married, do things right, it would pay off later. But it was too late. The pregnancy test came back positive. Natacha was full of hope, full of thoughts of family, being a wife, being a mother, making up for past losses.

Week by week we took care of Tachi in our program. Because she is fluent in English and works at the boy's home she is well known by many and a favorite of a lot of the Americans. People care about her.

As we feared, her boyfriend tired of her and found a new girl. He didn't even wait till the baby was born. At her last prenatal appointment she sat looking at her round belly and said, "He has a new girl. I hate him now." We felt that anger, disappointment, and hurt with her.

Early Wednesday morning Natasha called me from the boy's home to tell me she was in labor. Five hours later she was holding a 8 pound 8 ounce baby girl she named Esther Jane. Esther is Morgan's middle name.

We can only imagine her struggles. She's older now, she's 23, she is capable of raising this child.

In a life full of losses may little Esther help heal a wounded heart.Men are not dependable in this culture. Although this particular dad has a job it is unlikely he will be involved or help. Natasha will do this alone. But, she does have us, a community that loves her and will help her. And we will continue to point her to the one who is are true source of help and love. Our true help comes from Jesus Christ!

Please give a gift today. We need your help. Your donation allows us to grant these women a hand up, some dignity, and specifically allows us to offer them a safer option should they need emergency help. Thank you for helping us help them.

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