Watching the immigration situation of more than 10,000 Haitian migrants at the Texas border is hard for one local mission group.
"They do the best they can with what they have,” Haitian Pilgrims president Sue Ogle said. “They are a beautiful, loving, hard-working people and I truly love the people of Haiti."
Ogle is president of the Lewisville missionary group Haitian Pilgrims. It was started by some members of St. Philip the Apostle Parish in Lewisville in 1999.
Ogle has been making trips to work in Haiti for the past 20 years.
"I actually lived in Haiti and taught school in a school we built there in 2014, 2015 time frame," Ogle said.
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Ogle has seen first-hand the struggles in Haiti.
"The situation is extremely desperate,” Ogle said. “Over the years the economy has declined at a rate of about 2% a year."
Ogle added, "The people are up and the children are up very early in the morning walking to wells getting water to take home so the family can have water to cook for a day and to clean themselves for a day."
Ogle said even some organizations trying to help can cause some problems.
"Unfortunately, some very large nonprofit organizations send a significant amount of food to sale which undermines the farmers who can't sale at the price the larger organization can sale," Ogle said.
Ogle and Haitian Pilgrims strive to make life better in Haiti, especially in rural areas. They've built schools and teach agricultural programs among their other initiatives including health, safe water, and leadership.
Ogle said the situation happening at the Texas border is just a glimpse of how desperate things are in Haiti and what is fueling their migration.
"The desperation gives them strength,” Ogle said. “They don't have opportunity in Haiti and we of course we are the land of opportunity."
Haitian Pilgrims will continue sharing that opportunity to try and make things better in Haiti.
To learn more about Haitian Pilgrims mission and ways to donate click here.