Students travel to Haiti on mission trip


Courtesy Photo

Freshman Kelby Rice, junior Josh Norris, and senior Karee Dinkel all traveled to Haiti to visit the orphans.

Three students traveled to Haiti in January to help and conduct different activities throughout an orphanage.

The trip was to Gonaives, Haiti. It was the first trip the three of them had been on out of the country. They had all previously been on a trip to Houston to help with the hurricane relief.

Norris was inspired to go on mission trips and helping orphans when he traveled to Houston on his first mission trip. This was also when Rice realized he wanted to participate.

Dinkel, however, had a different reason she was inspired to go.

“My mom and I had many friends who had went to this particular orphanage with Coreluv before,” Dinkel said. “And ever since we heard their testimonies of the life-changing experience they all had, I’ve wanted to go.”

On the trip, Norris, Dinkel and Rice all made two new backboards for the orphans basketball goals, repainted the basketball court, held a basketball skills camp, and they also helped the St. Peter family that used to live in Hays, that have now relocated to Haiti.

While in Gonaives, all three had life-changing experiences themselves.

Norris said the way the children were filled with happiness and Gods love even though they didn’t have very many materialistic things was very life-changing for him.

Rice had the same experience as Norris, both realizing the orphans don’t have many materialistic things and the two of them should be more grateful for what they do have.

Dinkel said driving through the village and observing peoples “normality” was the hardest and most eye-opening experience for her.

“They own nothing except what the orphanage has given them,” Dinkel said. “Yet they are the most joy filled Jesus-loving kids I have ever spent time with.”

After the experiences encountered, all three would like to go on more mission trips. Dinkel and Norris both plan on going on one in the summer, and Rice plans on going on one next year around the same time.

While on the trip, Rice got close with some of the orphans and knew their personalities alike from one another.

“My favorite part of the trip was getting to know the orphans and seeing their personalities,” Rice said.

Getting close to the orphans was hard for Norris, especially when he had to leave them, knowing they wouldn’t be able to keep in touch.

Although it was hard seeing the conditions these kids lived in, the three that attended realized how easy we truly have it.

“You see the situation they have been placed in and see how happy they are,” Dinkel said. “And you just ask yourself, why am I not this happy and yet I have everything I need back home?”




Norris and Dinkel pose for a picture with two of the orphans.
An orphan in Haiti plays on one of his homemade toys.
Dinkel holds orphan while watching a game of basketball.
Dinkel takes picture with one of her orphans.
Dinkel and Norris show orphans how to take pictures.