One of the principles of the Lahai Roi Foundation is to help the members of the community in the most holistic way possible. While sharing the gospel in word and deed is at the forefront of the ministry, Lahai-Roi is also dedicated to community development projects which enhance the lives of citizens in the area providing them with resources and support to ensure long-term sustainability.
The hope is that every dollar spent on community development will have a long-lasting effect beyond short-term relief. One example is a program started by Pastor Sidor called “Fish Your Own Fish.” It is based on the simple principle that it is better to teach a man to fish rather than just giving him fish. Since obtaining a business loan is nearly impossible for most members of the community, Lahai Roi has created a micro-credit program which lends money to people in order to help them start their own business. Participants in this program pay back the low-interest loan and that money is then advanced to someone else.
At the school, there is an open-flame style oven which has been made available to ladies in the community who got a loan to start a baking business. The ladies each received a small loan to buy the initial baking supplies and now run a self-sustaining business. In exchange for using the school bakery, these ladies help bake the bread used to feed the students at the school. The school itself plays a role in the long-term sustainable investment plan of the ministry as it employing a group of people who may otherwise have a difficult time earning a living wage.
Lahai Roi has also helped the community of Duclos by building its first water reservoir. Duclos is an isolated village in the mountains with a very limited water supply and accessibility challenges due to steep topography and a lack of infrastructure. With the help of ministry partners, Lahai Roi was able to build the first water reservoir in the area. Like any community development project facilitated by the ministry, local labor and materials were utilized, providing employment for some members of the community in addition to fresh water. This same model was also utilized to rebuild the church in Duclos and homes of church members after the destruction of Hurricane Matthew in the fall of 2016.
The long-term goal in this area of the ministry is to eventually create a trade school where students can learn a practical skill after finishing their education to help them provide for their family on a long-term basis.