I was walking to our office this morning thinking how strange it is that we just ran across an entire country last week. Where am I? Did the run really happen? I spent the walk reflecting on every piece of the run and thought about what made the seemingly impossible possible.
It took a village. For every runner who thought there was no way she/he could complete the run, there was a runner who inspired them to finish. For every check point that seemed like it should have been the last, there was our cheerful support team who taped and glued us back together and sent us along with a promise that we’ll see them at the next check point, maybe even with fresh fruits in hand. For every moment that it felt like we were the only ones out there, especially while running in the dark, there was a call from Marc Noel or a text from a friend or our marketing team back home to remind us that they’re rooting us on from afar. None of us could have fought this mental battle without the help of another who believed in us. The run was a success because you were a part of this village who was behind us.
It took an incredible amount of heart. I can’t stress how amazing this team is. It’s a serious dream team, second to the original U.S. men’s basketball dream team from the ’92 Olympics. Our very own MJ aka Owen Mattison ran 30K with a makeshift boot on his leg and a smile on his face. There’s not a video clip of Josh where he’s not smiling and cheering everyone else on. Ian flew in with a flu, ran 230 miles, and made sure our spirits were high. He was the Admiral that we needed. Everyone came into this and left the run driven by a common objective of supporting our families in Haiti.
It took understanding that putting one foot in front of the other could make an impact. For every step that sucked, we were reminded of how much more abject poverty sucks. While deep-seeded poverty and trash were in abundance around us, we ran knowing that the impact we could make by doing this would last a lifetime. We ran knowing that showing the beauties of Haiti to the rest of the world will help others let their guards down and maybe open to investing in this country. We ran knowing that the funds raised will help families pull themselves out of poverty.
Seven hundred of you supported this run financially. Thank you for believing in us. Thank you for taking the time to follow and share our journey. I’m incredibly proud of our team. The strength and perseverance it took to accomplish this was beyond any I’ve experienced. All of us came into this intimidated, but we did it, one step at a time. When times are rough, we turn to the Haitian proverb “piti piti, wazo fe nich li,” which translates to “little by little the bird builds its nest.” With the Run Across Haiti, we took it one step at a time, one check point at a time, one mountain at a time.
I hope this has inspired you to do that one thing you never thought was possible. I hope this has inspired you to visit Haiti, to come meet our families and to invest in our work. I hope this has helped you to believe that ending poverty within our lifetime is absolutely possible.