Our ChildrenThe Rescued.
Children are always in great danger in Haiti. There are seventeen children living at our Safe Home. Take some time to get to know our eight boys and nine girls, and please continue to pray for them.
The youngest member of the Source of Life family is Esther, who is lovingly referred to as “little sister.” She was born on June 8, 2016 to a young single mother. The man who fathered Esther was absent during the entire pregnancy, taking no responsibility for her. Often the grandmother of a child opens her home to care for her daughter and grandchild in Haiti, but Esther’s grandmother was not in a healthy mental state and no other family members were able to help.
The process of bringing Esther into the Source of Life family was the most unusual Source of Life has experienced. Jacques learned about her situation during a time when it was impossible for him to safely travel to Haiti to personally do the legal work required by the Haitian government. Instead he supervised from the United States as Sony worked with the Haitian attorney until they completed many complicated steps.
When the mother was invited to an initial interview at the safe home with the attorney, she brought little Esther with her. The attorney explained that she would need to take the little girl home with her until the legal process was completed, yet she left the child behind when she departed! When the Source of Life staff shared the surprise with
Jacques, his “father’s heart”; could not send away this child! The staff and other children quickly welcomed little Esther.
An inquiry was soon made at a local school about the possibility of enrolling her for classes, and it became apparent that God had already paved the way for Esther. The
school accepted her immediately and allowed her to begin preschool classes.
Our hearts overflow with praise and thanksgiving to Almighty God for delivering this precious child from the jaws of poverty. Never again will she be undernourished. No longer does she play using trash. Source of Life Ministries is honored to be used by God in the life of one more child. Pray with us that Esther will grow up knowing that she is loved and chosen by God. She is a child of the Highest King!!!
This little firecracker was born October 8, 2014 and is one of the youngest members of the Source of Life family. When Farleine was born, her very young mother and father could not take care of her, so her father gave the baby to her maternal grandmother. She cared for Farleine for a couple years but could not continue and returned the child to her father. When Jacques learned about the situation, he found Farleine with an enlarged stomach, which is usually a sign of “Kwashiorkor” – a form of malnutrition caused by protein deficiency in the diet. After the legal process was completed, Farleine came to the home to live in September of 2017.
Farleine began school in October, 2017. (In Haiti, children go through three levels of preschool/kindergarten, beginning at age three.) Farleine has a huge personality and is very, very clever. She is perceptive and inquisitive, which is obvious by the questions she asks and comments she makes! She is quite good at making jokes and keeps herself and others well-entertained. Her sweetness and affectionate nature are infectious, and everyone loves teasing her or picking her up for cuddles!
Praise God for the opportunity to provide this little girl with nourishing food, a good education, lots of love and to teach her to know and follow Jesus!!!
This bundle of energy was born on January 19, 2013. Naika’s mother passed away when she was only a couple months old, and she basically began her life living in the streets with her father. From time-to-time, he would drop her off with Carla’s mother (another one of our SLM children) and sometimes disappear for a month at a time.
On April 6, 2017, when Jacques visited the home of Carla’s mother, he noticed Naika. She was tiny, dirty, and looked sick. Although his plans had been to bring one more child to the Source of Life home, he could not “close his eyes” when he saw Naika. The process was started right away to bring Naika to the home in Gressier, and her father, who to this day continues to drift from place to place, gave legal consent.
Naika is equal parts sweet and stubborn! She is extremely smart and good with her schoolwork. She loves to figure out how things work, asks questions and is not satisfied until she believes she has received a complete answer. Even at this young age, it is obvious that Naika has some artistic abilities; she loves to make intricate designs and pictures on the big chalkboard at the home.
We are grateful that God opened the door for Naika to join the Source of Life family; pray for God’s wisdom and direction as we raise this little girl for the glory of God!
This precious little girl was born on December 27, 2012 and became part of our Source of Life family on July 20, 2019. Prior to coming to Source of Life, Abigaelle and one older brother lived with their mother who was unable to provide for the needs of her family. Though Abigaelle’s father is alive, he did not live with them. Early in her life, when Abigaelle’s father remembered to stop by, he generally gave her mother $70 Haitian, which is equal to about $4 US. Afterward he would disappear for months at a time, then he completely stopped showing up.
According to her mother, Abigaelle would go DAYS without anything to eat except for a little bit of food given to her by neighbors. When she found herself without food, Abigaelle would walk through the neighborhood to find help! Although most neighbors didn’t have enough food for their own families, they would try to give her a little to eat.
This little girl has experienced dire circumstances in her young life. When it rained, she had to stay inside their little tent shack, but water came through everywhere. They battled with all kinds of insects, including snakes and spiders, because they could get inside with no problem.
In 2018, an employee of Source of Life Ministries made a request on behalf of Abigaelle for her to be accepted into the home. This employee had witnessed what this precious child had to go through to find something to eat and had been trying to support her. After an investigation, it was determined that Abigaelle was eligible to join the other children at our home. The legal process required by Haitian law was followed and medical testing was performed, then Abigaelle joined our family.
The other children welcomed Abigaelle, and she seemed to begin to feel at home very quickly. She began playing with the other children her age and having lots of fun. She had attended pre-school for a short period of time when she was younger, but she had been unable to continue going to school because of the family’s financial situation. Since coming to Source of Life, Abigaelle is able to attend school on a permanent basis!
What a privilege for God to enable us to “snatch” one more from a desperate state. We believe God will open many doors for her in the years to come.
Carla was born May 5, 2010; Jacques met her when she was only a few months old because her mother would bring the baby, requesting food for her when Source of Life was located in the Carrefour area. Sometimes her mother would leave Carla at the home for several days, but for quite a few years, contact was lost. Later, Jacques began asking people if they knew the whereabouts of the mother and child. On April 6, 2017, someone took Jacques to where she lived; what he saw was shocking!
The house Carla’s mother was living in was no more than 6′ x 8′. It was discovered that Carla’s 5 brothers, 3 sisters, and one more child were all living in that tiny house! Carla’s mother was trying to support all of them by doing laundry for people, but sometimes there was no work for a month at a time and, therefore, no money to feed the children!
An offer was given to bring Carla to Source of Life, and with parental consent, the legal process was started. On June 17, 2017, Carla joined the SLM family.
Carla is a very smart child, and it shows in her grades at school. She loves to sing throughout the day and with the congregation at church; it will not be surprising if she joins the church choir when she gets older. She loves to dance and enjoys jumping rope during play time. She is a very willing, self-motivated helper: without any prompting, she notices someone has finished drinking or eating and takes the empty cup or plate to the kitchen. She’s always looking for a way to help.
We are so happy that Carla became part of our family! Pray with us for God to direct us and to open every door for the plan He has for Carla’s life!
Suzie was born on July 13, 2010 to two teenagers who lacked the means, knowledge and desire to raise a child. When she was three days old, Suzie was left outside the front door of her father’s parent’s house. Both of her grandparents were in their late 70s and not really able to care for a baby, but they brought her in just the same.
In September of 2014, Source of Life Ministries received information regarding Suzie, and we conducted an investigation. Her living conditions were horrible, and we began the search for her mother to get her consent to release Suzie to us. When we could not locate her mother, we resorted to gaining consent from her grandparents. This is an extreme measure according to Haitian government, but it was necessary to save this little girl from deplorable conditions. She finally came to us in December 2014.
Suzie has a huge personality. She is very playful and wants to be involved in everything that goes on around her. For three years, Suzie was the baby of the Source of Life family. When Carla and Naika joined the household, Suzie originally found losing her status as the baby a difficult transition, but she adjusted. She’s a smart little girl and works hard on her schoolwork and likes to spend time coloring or painting.
We are grateful God enabled us to lift Suzie out of hopeless circumstances. We are praying for God to direct her life and to open many doors for her in the years to come
Alex became part of the Source of Life family in January of 2014. When he first arrived, he would beg the house mothers each night not to send him back to the place where he was living before. He was reassured again and again that he was part of a new family and would not be sent back. In just a few months, he warmed right up and began to fit-in like a child his age.
The conditions where Alex was living were among the worst we have seen in the investigations we have done. Born the youngest of eight children on September 23, 2007, he never knew his father because he died suddenly when Alex was only a month old. Despite their hardships, his mother was able to continue raising them. When Alex was only five, his mother died giving birth to her ninth child. The siblings went to live with their grandmother who was already raising eight other children. Needless to say, there was very little food available among 17 children, and the situation began to deteriorate.
Dennis Winand of Flame Ministry referred Alex to Source of Life Ministries. As the next to the youngest child, he was at a greater disadvantage. After the completion of the legal process, Alex was welcomed into the safe home. When he arrived, his skin was very, very rough because he had never worn clothes except for the borrowed clothes he wore the day Jacques visited his grandparent’s home!
School has been a challenge for Alex because he did not have the opportunity to go to preschool and kindergarten (the first 3 years of school). Without that educational foundation, it can be difficult for children to “catch up” as they progress through the grades. Alex is attending a smaller school in Gressier where he can receive more individual attention, and we are hopeful that his grades will improve.
Alex “never sits down for a minute!” He is always jumping around, doing summersaults, or playing with a ball, then before you know it, you find him asleep under the table or on the concrete! If Jacques hears a ball bounce against the outside wall of his bedroom at 6:00 am, there is no need to guess who is outside playing ball!!!! Alex also has a very grateful heart. After EVERY meal, he goes to find Papi Jacques to say thank-you for the food!!!
Praise God for the opportunity to raise Alex at the Source of Life Safe Home! We pray for God’s Spirit to give wisdom and insight as we parent him.
Shinaider is one of the original ten children who comprised the Source of Life home when it’s doors were opened in 2009. He was born on February 2, 2005 to a woman with severe mental illness who had three other children. Unfortunately, due to her disease and mental impairment, she was often exploited by men in the community. The identity of Shinaider’s father remains a mystery.
Several months after giving birth, Shinaider’s mother’s condition worsened, and she was too unstable to take care of a baby. He was left with strangers who also did not care for him properly. He was malnourished and devoid of any other family who could care for him.
When Source of Life Ministries received a referral regarding this child, an investigation found him to be near starvation. He was released into our care and has grown healthier under the Lord’s provision.
This young man is very quiet and had some trouble adjusting to his new life at the home when he first arrived. By the grace of God, he adjusted and is doing well. Shinaider has a leadership personality, which can be seen in his attempts to correct younger children at church and VBS. He is very interested in history and current events. For example, if he hears a discussion about history, he will leave whatever he is doing to pay attention to the conversation. He asks a lot of questions and likes to learn. Shinaider also finds a lot of satisfaction in planting and working in the garden.
We praise God for the opportunity He gave us to bring Shinaider to Source of Life Ministries. It is our prayer that God will give direction for Shinaider’s life and use him for His glory!
This beautiful young lady always has a smile on her face and a twinkle in her eye. Her laughter and bright personality make her a source of joy for those around her. However, Gabrielle’s life began under harsh circumstances when her mother was attacked by six gang members on her way home. They took her to an empty building and repeatedly raped her. When Gabrielle was born on May 8, 2005, the memory of the violence led her mother to give the baby over to her own father.
Unfortunately, Gabrielle’s grandfather was already caring for five other children and needed to find better work to support them. He went to live in the Dominican Republic and left the six children to look after each other. A few of them were not much older than Gabrielle.
By the time Source of Life Ministries heard of the situation and made a home visit to investigate, she was near death and in immediate need of intervening help. The legal process was followed, and Gabrielle became one of the original ten children in our home.
Gabrielle is extremely intelligent and maintains a very high grade average in school. She enjoys discovering new skills, learns quickly, and often teaches herself after watching what someone else does. Gabrielle is a productive, responsible, young lady with a compassionate heart. She loves to cook and clean and spends as much time as she can in the kitchen helping the ladies. Although her intelligence makes her very comfortable in a discussion with the SLM attorney, Her goal is to become a chef. From the time she was young, she has not wavered in this desire.
We praise God for entrusting Gabrielle into our care. We pray that she will continue to develop into the woman God has called her to be.
Woodson Compere has been part of the Source of Life family since its opening in February 2009. He was born on September 22, 2005 as the youngest of three children. Compere’s father died while his mother was pregnant with him. She made the decision to leave him with her mother in Les Cayes while she moved with the older children to Port-au-Prince to find better conditions. Only a few months later, Compere’s grandmother died, and his mother was forced to bring him to Port-au-Prince as well.
Their living conditions deteriorated even further and Compere was often subjected to starvation, humiliation and loneliness in his impoverished situation. He was left unsupervised much of the time and often went without anything to eat. When his mother died, an acquaintance reported his condition to Source of Life Ministries. An investigation confirmed the report, the legal process was followed, and Compere was accepted into the home.
This young man has an infectious smile and a laugh that makes it impossible to resist joining in. He always has a story to tell or something to explain. It has been said that his biggest problem in school is needing to be told to be quiet because he talks so much! After school, Compere loves to play soccer. He has become a very good base guitar player and plays during every service at church.
It is a joy to be able to provide Compere with a childhood that he could never have imagined. Pray for God to direct his steps and open doors as he continues developing into the man God has planned for him to be.
Jean-Yves is an absolute sweetheart with his ready smile and joking personality. He was born May 8, 2002 and became part of the family at Source of Life when the home opened in 2009.
His story is a little different from the others in that he had parents for most of his life prior to entering the safe home. Jean-Yves was the youngest of six children in his family, and his birth was unplanned. When his mother became pregnant, his father became upset and left the family.
When Jean-Yves was 2 years old, his father returned. After his parents reunited, it came to light that his father was HIV positive. In 2008, Source of Life Ministries received a letter on behalf of Jean-Yves. After prayerful consideration, it was determined that he should be given the opportunity to have a better life, and the legal process was completed to make him part of the family.
Jean-Yves is an amazing student. He works very hard, and it always shows. Haitian schools are progressive and promote students based on merit. Based on his grades, Jean Yves was advanced to the next higher grade and started high school at age 13. His desire for many years has been to become a doctor after he finishes school. With the abilities he demonstrates in school, it’s not hard to believe that his dream will become a reality.
Jean-Yves is a delightful young man. He loves playing soccer and is very good at it. He has a sense of humor that leans toward practical joking. Most of the time, his laughter comes out in giggles, which makes things even funnier.
It is a joy to raise Jean-Yves at Source of Life. Pray with us for God’s direction in the coming years as he finishes school and steps into the plan of God for him.
Micka was born July 3, 2002 and has been part of the Source of Life family since its founding in 2009. While it may sound odd to many outside the country, Micka’s background is not unheard of in Haiti. Micka was constantly ill from the time of her birth, and her parents believed it was the result of an evil spirit within her. Although Source of Life was originally told that Micka’s mother died, when Jacques investigated her case in later years, he discovered her mother was alive but living in very poor conditions. She would not have been able to properly care for her child, so we are glad Micka came to live at our home.
Micka was severely neglected by members of her family, and in 2008, one of her relatives applied for her to be placed in the Source of Life Ministry’s Safe Home. An investigation into her circumstances yielded her eligibility, and she was welcomed into a loving environment where she has blossomed.
This quiet young woman has a gifted singing voice and is using her talent in the church choir. It is a treat to hear her humming and singing as she goes about her day. Micka has a very bold personality and is always eager to lend a hand with household chores. She is quick with jokes and laughter but can be tough when it is required. She is very good with the younger children and does not hold back on giving lectures to correct behavior. She is also a great soccer player and is always ready to jump in the game.
While Micka is not sure what she would like to be after she completes school, she is maturing into a lovely person. We are grateful that God made it possible for Micka to be part of our family and pray for His direction in her life.
From her bright personality and eagerness to participate with the other children at the home, you would think Nerlande was just an average little girl. However, she suffers from double hip dysplasia that presents itself in a rather obvious limp. Despite the condition, she doesn’t want to miss a thing. She loves to play with the others and even enjoys jumping rope and playing soccer.
Since disabled people are usually not accepted in the Haitian culture, we are thankful Nerlande is now in an environment of support and encouragement. Nerlande’s disability was evident at birth (July 17, 2002) and when she was a few weeks old, her mother wrapped her in cloth and placed her near a pile of trash. Thank God, a friend of Nerlande’s father saw what had taken place and notified him. Her father retrieved her and took care of Nerlande the best he could. A legal investigation determined that Nerlande was eligible to become part of Source of Life. She became one of the original ten children when the home opened in 2009.
Nerlande is a very quiet girl, but she is quick to laugh and enjoy herself. She is quite creative and artistic, and she enjoys doing crafts and art projects. She sings in the church choir and enjoys taking care of babies during the service. She loves braiding the other girls’ hair and actually learned on her own from watching Esther. Her goal is to become a teacher.
Outside of the SLM Safe Home with her father’s limited means, Nerlande would never have had a chance for a normal life. We are blessed to have her as part of our family and look forward to seeing what the Lord has in store for her.
When Source of Life opened it’s doors in 2009, this young man became one of the original ten children at our home. Billy was born on April 12, 2001. He was the youngest of nine children whose parents basically abandoned him due to a lack of money to care for so many. As a young boy, he had to leave home in the early morning hours to beg for food. Often he would not return until late at night.
During Source of Life Ministry’s investigation into his case, it was found that Billy had no parental supervision and was on the brink of starvation. Since joining our family, he has been nourished in both body and soul. Now, he is physically the strongest and the most humble of the children we are raising!
Billy has a special personality. He is very gentle with children, he is respectful and polite and quick to voice appreciation, and he is willing to do anything, anytime he is asked. Billy has become the keyboard player at our church Legliz Christienne de Jovin (Christian Church of Jovin), having learned to play mostly by teaching himself.
Pray with us for God to lead and open doors for Billy’s future. He loves to design and creates very detailed drawings of buildings; he wants to become an engineer. This will be challenging, not only because of limited opportunities in Haiti, but also because he will not graduate from school until he is 23 years old since he could not begin school at the proper age. God knows all the details, and we pray He will bring to pass His plan in Billy’s life!
This handsome young man was born on November 9, 2001 and has been part of the family of Source of Life since the day of the 2010 earthquake.
On the day of the earthquake, Jean Merine escaped the city with 25 children, including those already living in the Safe House. When they returned to the city a few days later, Jean began the search for parents of the children he had rescued. Most were found successfully, but Wood’s guardians could not be found.
It was learned that Wood’s father had never acknowledged him as his son, and his mother had previously returned to the countryside where she grew up, so Wood was being raised by friends of his mother. After the earthquake, Wood was welcomed into the growing SLM family. Because Jacques believes it is very important for the children to be connected with their family roots, in recent years, he has been helping Wood begin to develop a relationship with his mother.
Wood loves technology (computers, cameras, etc) and has been learning photography from Guerby. He likes to draw and is quite artistic. He would like to become an engineer. In the evenings and weekends, after school work is complete, Wood is often outside playing basketball or soccer. And yes, he willingly helps with work that needs to be done around the home: carrying water if the generator goes down, cleaning, and anything else he’s asked to do.
Although Wood had started classes at a small school when he was young, he was not in the proper grade when he arrived at SLM and will likely not graduate until he is 21 years old. (Did you know that the requirements are higher in Haiti to pass from grade-to-grade and to graduate than they are in the USA??) Wood loves learning and speaking English and began taking classes on the weekends; he has completed all of the English courses that are available in Gressier!
It is a privilege to have Wood be part of the Source of Life family. Lift him in prayer as he comes to your mind, praying that God will direct his future steps and give wisdom to Jacques and the staff as they help direct him.
This talented young man was born March 24, 2000 and is one of the original ten children at Source of Life Ministries. Though he was the oldest child of a large family, Guerby never knew his own father. He was left on his own to find food and most often received meals by begging or digging through trash piles on the streets of Carrefour.
When Source of Life began accepting applications in the summer of 2008, someone close to Guerby sent an application on his behalf. After an investigation into his circumstances, it was decided that Guerby was eligible, and he was released into our care.
Guerby is a quick learner, very resourceful and can fix just about anything! We gave him a set of tools when we realized that he was fixing things with only a screwdriver. He is very proud of his tools and loves to complete little maintenance jobs around the home.
Guerby has strong abilities in the area of computer technology. Whatever help Papi Jacques needs on the computer or phone, you can be sure Guerby can quickly do it for him! His skills are self taught from researching online when the wifi is working.
Recently Guerby has gained a passion for photography. He has a “good eye” and has been teaching himself to use editing software. Some of his photography has been used in SLM’s Facebook posts. His goal currently is to become a successful graphic designer and photographer.
We are so glad that Guerby is part of our family at Source of Life Ministries! Pray with us for God’s power to bring to pass His plan for Guerby’s life!
This quiet young lady was born on August 20,1999. She is the oldest girl in our home and the “little mother” of the house. Her natural instincts are those of a nurturer, and she cares deeply for the other children in the home. She is very helpful with the younger children and is always willing to help with household duties as well.
Dinia likes school and hopes to become a nurse one day. In addition to her schoolwork, Dinia is taking English classes on weekends to improve her language skills.
Although her future looks bright, Dinia’s start in life was not. Her mother did not have the resources to care for a baby and abandoned her when she moved to the Dominican Republic. Dinia’s father was also without resources and gave his daughter to his mother. In 2008, Dinia’s grandmother heard that Source of Life Ministries was beginning the process of screening children to be brought into the home and reached out to us. Dinia was eligible and was brought from an environment where she was often left to fend for herself to find her own food into an environment of loving support and provision.
Dinia has the joy of the Lord in her heart and is maturing into a beautiful young woman. She is very involved in the church, singing in the choir, helping with the youth program, and taking care of babies during church services. We are so pleased to have Dinia in our family at Source of Life Ministries!
Clauder came into the Source of Life home after the earthquake in 2010. He was born on September 14,1996, but his story begins before his birth when his father left his pregnant mother without money or a job and unable to pay the rent. She left her home and moved in with one of her sisters but became destitute by the time Clauder was 15 months old. After living in the streets of Port-au-Prince, another sister allowed the young mother and child to live with her. Though she found work as a maid, the job ended when the family employing her could no longer pay her. She found another position, but the earthquake left her jobless and homeless again. When Jean Merine found them, Clauder was released into the care of Source of Life Ministries.
Clauder tends to be shy, soft-spoken, and serious, but he also loves to have fun and can sometimes be a practical joker. He also loves to play foutbòl (soccer), which is not surprising since it is the favorite sport in Haiti. Clauder has developed into a gentle young man who has a passion for God and the church! He regularly teaches adult Sunday School, leads prayer during the services, and sometimes preaches.
In 2018 Clauder turned 22 years of age and also became the first from our Home to graduate from high school. His favorite classes in high school were physics and chemistry. He believes God has called him to be a doctor and is hoping to begin medical school.
We are so happy that we were able to give him a home and that he became part of our family! Pray with us for God to open every door for the plan He has for Clauder’s life!
SOURCE OF LIFE MINISTIRES
TSM / Source of Life Ministries
c/o Jacques Merine, Founder
P.O. Box 96
Hanover, PA 17331
Lacoline, Gressier, Haiti
**Donations to Source of Life Ministries may qualify as a charitable deduction for federal income tax purposes under our partnering relationship with Thirsty Souls Ministries, Inc., which is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization.