A Life-changing Mission Trip – Jeanne Wyatt
A Life-changing Mission Trip Jeanne Wyatt IBO since 1997 | Platinum
When Jeanne Wyatt arrived in Haiti on January 9, 2010, her mission was wellness.
Along with a team of medical professionals, she went to work in a clinic on the small island of La Gonave, providing basic care to 800 island residents with stomachaches, headaches, and minor maladies.
On the third day, after workers treated moms and babies all day, the clinic’s tin roof started to shake. “It made sounds like a freight train going over our heads,” Jeanne said. “I thought, ‘This can’t be happening here!’”
A California-born girl, Jeanne thought she knew the feel of an earthquake. “In California, the buildings sway and we all know what to do,” she said. “When I stepped outside in La Gonave, it was like stepping onto a trampoline. The ground bucked and swelled like nothing I’d ever experienced.”
From that day on, life at the clinic changed. Wounded people from Port-au-Prince started arriving on La Gonave via a three-hour ferry ride and the clinic’s medical team began treating the broken, weak, and burned.
Meanwhile, the team’s return flight was canceled – their plane was needed to transport medical supplies. They were told, “You have water, food, and shelter; you are not a priority.”
Near the clinic, a Wesleyan mission group worked to find a way home for its student missionary team and Jeanne’s medical group. They learned, via the internet, that Amway was flying jets to Haiti, delivering doctors and supplies, and returning home empty. After a friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend contacted Amway, the stranded teams had the start of a fragile departure plan.
The first leg of their trip began Saturday, January 16. First was a jaunt on a lobster boat, then a 60-mile-an-hour trip in the back of a pickup truck to Port-au-Prince. In the city, they saw unimaginable devastation and death. “As the rubble was being cleared away, people were digging through the piles, hoping to find something they could use to build some sort of shelter,” Jeanne remembers.
In a Wesleyan mission house with no electricity, the team spent their night in Port-au-Prince trying to sleep, but were awakened by gunshots all night long. On Sunday, guards met them at the airport and escorted them to the Amway jet.
A change in roles
Life took a dramatic change when the group stepped onboard the Amway jet. “I felt like I was getting the treatment of a Diamond IBO, and it was wonderful,” Jeanne said. They moved from being the caregivers to being cared for. As the only IBO on board, Jeanne sang the praises of the company.
“The group was amazed by the generosity being shown,” she said. “We were offered any and everything to make our journey comfortable, and then fed gourmet lunches after we cleared customs in Miami.”
After arriving in Michigan, they made their way home to South Dakota.
“Words cannot adequately express our gratitude to Amway for their assistance in getting our group back to the United States,” said Jeanne in a thank you letter to Amway. “We were treated like royalty. We are grateful to God and the many people who played a part in our return.”