Garda employees are known for their community involvement. From world relief efforts to local charitable events, Garda is proud of the fact that employees choose to spend their time giving back to those in need; much like Garda Cash Logistics VP of National Business Development and Training, Jamie Rutherford, did on his recent trip to Haiti where he worked with the Global Orphan Project.
Global Orphan Project is an orphan care ministry that services villages all over the world. They work with churches, civic organizations and Major League sports teams in the US to provide aid and support to the orphanages they run.
“There’s no child welfare system in Haiti,” said Jamie. “There’s no fire department, no postal system… nothing. The Global Orphan Project keeps these children fed and clothed.”
Jamie’s church partnered with the organization to send 23 volunteer members of the congregation to Haiti for a week. Volunteers delivered much needed medical and educational supplies along with plenty of recreational equipment for the children, such as Frisbees and soccer balls.
During their week in Haiti, Jamie’s volunteer group visited four orphanages around the Port-Au-Prince area, which was severely affected in the 2010 earthquake that caused over 300,000 deaths. They interacted with over 250 displaced and orphaned children by participating in daily craft projects including the colorful “Chloe Bands” you see pictured in this post’s accompanying photograph.
“Chloe is my neighbors’ nine-year-old daughter. We regularly play games like Chinese Checkers… she’s become a buddy of mine,” said Jamie. “Before my trip, Chloe and I were discussing what I could bring to keep the children entertained that would be lightweight and easily transportable. That’s when she showed me her bracelets. They were perfect. She went home right away and made more than 100 of them overnight. ”
After Chloe taught Jamie how to produce the bracelets himself, they went to the hobby store for supplies, purchasing enough material to make 300 bracelets for just $10. When he got to Haiti, Jamie’s volunteer group also taught the facility leadership how to make the bracelets.
“These kids have less than nothing. You see children with the same outfit on three and four days at a time,” said Jamie. “If they found a unique rock, they guarded it with their life. When we presented the bracelets to the children, it was like giving an American child a $100 bill. They were that happy.”