In November 2015, Lifesong for Orphans and Ministre de Bras Ouverts (Open Arms Ministry) joined together to build a high school with residential dorms on an undeveloped 45-acre site in Bercy, Haiti, about an hour northwest of Port Au Prince. Already, access roads have been built, a community center opened, fencing installed, wells drilled, feeding programs begun, upgraded housing built for those who live on the site, and agricultural programs commenced. We anticipate that construction will start on our guesthouse and our first classrooms and dormitories in March 2016. We expect to start our first seventh-grade class this fall. Ultimately, this boarding school will serve 288 orphans and vulnerable children. We also will add a vocational school for adults, a soccer program for area children, as well as additional farming, fishing, and livestock programs to permit all in need to develop important life skills.
- Develop future leaders that will change the nation of Haiti
- Grow loving, financially responsible families
- Provide transitional living for our graduates to ease them into independent living
- Create employment opportunities for our graduates and for the local population
- Develop deep individual discipleship
- House our students in family style residences
- Provide an exceptional primary, secondary, vocational/university education to orphans and vulnerable children
- Work with existing ministries like Schools4Haiti and Light of Christ Ministries to improve their facilities, quality of education, and programs to transition students into our secondary & vocational schools
- Impact the communities of our children, meeting local needs, strengthen families, teaching our children the importance of giving back.
- Build transitional living homes for graduates near employment opportunities
- Launch businesses to provide employment opportunities and
By the Numbers
- 300 Children Served
- 8 Family Homes Built
- 75 Adults Employed
Open Arms Ministry
Open Arms Ministry (Ministre de Bras Ouverts) is an organization, founded by Mike and Amy Rivas. Mike and Amy played soccer at the division 1 level in college and Mike had the opportunity to play/coach beyond his college years. Mike and Amy both taught at a high school in California before moving to Haiti. They have three children.
In 2015, after a number of visits, Mike and Amy decided to move their family to Haiti and founded their ministry, which aligned closely with the mission of Lifesong. They were fortunate to be able to acquire the Bercy property from the Bercy village elders and now will devote their efforts to developing and administering all of the efforts at our Bercy campus.
Open Arms Site Plan
- Sponsor a Student | $150/month
- Provide Solar Power for (1) Student Residence | $5,000
- Furnish a Classroom | $10,000
- Provide a Bedroom for (4) Students | $25,000
- Provide a Classroom for (24) Students | $40,000
- Furnish and Provide Appliances for (1) Student Residence | $50,000
- Build a Student Residence | $84,000
If you donate by check, 100% of your donation will go directly to this project. Lifesong has been blessed with partners who underwrite all U.S. administrative and fundraising costs (TMG Foundation and other partners). Send checks payable to “Lifesong for Orphans”. In the memo line please write “Haiti – Bercy”, to ensure it is credited to this project. Please mail to Lifesong for Orphans, PO Box 40, Gridley, IL 61744. Please note for online transactions, STRIPE charges an administrative fee (2.2% +.30 USD per transaction). The amount received by Lifesong will be decreased by the STRIPE fee.
NOTE: In following IRS guidelines, your donation is to the named non-profit organization. This organization retains full discretion over its use but intends to honor the donor’s suggested use.
Individual donations of $50 or more and yearly donations totaling $250 or more will receive a tax-deductible receipt. Receipts for donations under $50 will gladly be sent upon request. Lifesong is a 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization.