“I love helping people,” says OHS senior, Jamie Sullivan. As a part of her church, she’s been involved in mission trips since 7th grade, three hometown missions, and trips to Oklahoma and Boston. Her sixth and most recent trip was the one she’s been waiting a long time for - Haiti. “It was always a goal of mine but I never thought it would come true.”
When the opportunity came up in the fall, she began fundraising and set her sights to go. She was among just six people to go for seven days. They visited an orphanage where they handed out pencils and played with the kids, “I really liked the kids. I can’t talk enough about how cute and happy they were to see us.” They brought sidewalk chalk and a soccer ball and the kids were thrilled to see them.
They also organized a medical room; they emptied and sorted boxes of medicine and medical supplies and built shelves for that room. Local Haitians offered to help; Jamie said that despite a language barrier, they were all able to work together and get a lot done, “We don’t have to know the same language to work together.”
The Haitians were so thankful for their work, but Jamie is thankful for the experience and opportunity, “I loved it. I think my mindset has changed. I’m now very grateful for the little things I have, the pillow I have and more than one change of clothes.” She says she just wants to give everything she has to them. She said it was “hard to see” the conditions they live in - hardly a full house and broken up cement, dirty water to wash their clothes and cacti to hang them to dry along a dirt road. She hopes to go back someday.
This summer, she and 30 other people will hop a train to New Mexico for the next mission. But her trips won’t end there, “I just have a service heart and I want to go to college for public and nonprofit,” she says and adds that she’ll continue mission trips throughout her career.