Christian Aid Groups Respond to Trump’s Profane Comments
President Donald Trump on Friday denied he used a profane comment when he discussed protecting immigrants from Haiti, El Salvador and African countries during a bipartisan immigration deal meeting.
Even so, the fallout from the alleged comment is drawing reaction from Christian organizations that provide relief efforts in Haiti.
“It’s too soon to tell how the people of Haiti will react to his comments,” said Sherman Balch, founder of Extollo International, a nonprofit based in Pleasanton, California.
“We are striving to build them up and let them know they are uniquely and wonderfully made in the image of God, instilling hope and self-worth,” he continued. “Trump’s comment shows he has little knowledge and understanding of the people of Haiti, and send the exact opposite message.”
Balch, a respected Bay Area builder with Balch Enterprises in Hayward, first traveled to Haiti in March 2010, just two months after an earthquake killed more than 200,000 people and left an additional 1 million homeless.
Working with Cornerstone Fellowship Church, Extollo supervised and helped rebuild the Dezman Fluery Foundation orphanage in Leogane, Haiti.
It was destroyed by the quake, displacing dozens of Haitian girls.
Noting the country’s widespread unemployment, Balch was compelled to not only supply Haitians with permanent homes, but to hire them and train them to do the building themselves.
So far, Extollo has hired Haitian workers and pumped hundreds of thousands of dollars into the local economy, Balch said.
“Today is the eight-year anniversary of the devastating earthquake in Haiti… if anything good can come from Trump’s comments, hopefully it will bring more attention to Haiti’s challenges and struggles,” Balch said.
He added, “From Extollo’s perspective it will likely make our work harder, but at the same time challenges us to work harder and to do more. We believe in the Haitian people. We believe they want to work to take care of their own families.”
“We believe if we give them a hand up, not a handout, and raise up men and women of godly character they will succeed regardless of the challenges they face,” he concluded.
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