Sleeping late for a change, I availed myself of some excellent Haitian coffee before receiving a call from Ysmaille.  “Would you like to me to pick you up?”  While waiting in the lobby, I downgraded my room and told the front desk manager about laptops and kids.

“I would like a laptop for my daughter,” she said.

“Ah, well, we work with schools, not individual children.”

“How many laptops do you have?  You will not miss one.”  She is half-smiling, playing me.

“Sorry, I must tell people where they go.  Maybe you could give me her school’s information.”

“I want one for her, at our home.  Now I am very sad. You are not my friend.”  Half smile.

Ysmaille brought me to AMURT’s headquarters where we found a hundred differently shaped boxes, all from the individual donors.  OLPC had not even opened them, so each had the original shipping labels. I decided to take photos of each label, so we could thank each person.  Opening the boxes we found many personal notes.  Here is one:

Opening the boxes was hard work, but it was also inspirational.  I felt a connection to each of these people, calling out their city and state to the half-dozen Haitians  in the room.  By the time we opened the last box, we were getting late for the first mentor class, so we dashed off to AMSAI.

This being Haiti, most of the new mentors were late as well.  We started at half-past with a get-to-know-you game.  I then addressed the group and read Avery’s letter.  “There are many in the United States who wish to help, but don’t know how.  What we are doing here today may pave the way for others to help in the same way.”

We then handed out the laptops and taught the group of 24 the very basics of Sugar.  We let people explore on their own quite a bit more than we’ve done in the past, believing they should make mistakes and learn from them while we’re there, that the attitude gained from this is as important as the content covered.  It worked out wonderfully.  Our three local trainers felt it was a great improvement.

Back at the hotel, I began reflashing enough laptops for the children’s class on Monday, though quickly reached my limit with more “bricks” than anticipated.  After a few hours of “Family Guy” (left over on my laptop from months earlier), I collapsed to sleep.

One response to “D3) Avery’s Gift”

  1. […] last box, we were getting late for the first mentor class, so we dashed off to AMSAI. READ MORE: http://waveplace.org/news/blog/2011/01/29/d3-averys-gift/ This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. ← Manigat, […]

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