Inspiration from Haiti
[caption id="attachment_110" align="alignright" width="300" caption="John Engle of Haiti Partners, Laura Timm, Director of Corporate Communications, Briggs & Stratton, Job Ce're'me' and Videographer Nolan Hurley"]
[lightbox link="http://plumtalk.files.wordpress.com/2010/06/img_1820.jpg"][/lightbox][/caption]I recently had the incredible experience of traveling to Port au Prince, Haiti with Laura Timm, Corporate Communications Director for Briggs & Stratton and Doug Page from Marx McClellan Thrun (MMT). Our mission was to document Briggs' generous donation of 240 electric generators to Haiti through the Pan American Development Foundation (PADF), and Haiti Partners. All in all the trip was a huge success. The photos and video we acquired have garnered Briggs and Stratton immeasurable amounts of positive PR. Each day brings another media outlet running with the images and the story we have crafted. I am very proud to have played a part in all of that. It means that we at Plum have done our jobs well.
[li]Briggs & Stratton Generates a Return to Routine in Haiti[/li]
[li]Brigss & Stratton Blog: Helping Haiti[/li]
[li]Buffett Aids Briggs & Stratton in Haiti Relief Efforts[/li]
[lightbox link="http://plumtalk.files.wordpress.com/2010/06/img_1726.jpg"][/lightbox]On a personal note, one of the many great things about my occupation is that, in the 25+ years that I have been involved in video production, it has taken me to fascinating places to which I might never have gone. It has put me in contact with amazing people I might never have encountered (see Jimmy Buffet 's Website). It has removed me from my comfort zone and, most importantly, it has generally humbled me by demonstrating how little I really know about the world. I was "fortunate" enough to travel to the Yucatan in Mexico shortly after hurricane Wilma devastated the area in 2005. I thought at the time I had "seen it all." Not to diminish the disaster in Mexico as many of them continue their struggle to rebound, but nothing could prepare me for what I witnessed in the earthquake crumbled streets of Port au Prince. Frankly, it has taken me a couple weeks to fully process the sensory overload we were exposed to during our brief stay.
[lightbox link="http://plumtalk.files.wordpress.com/2010/06/img_18321.jpg"][/lightbox]The heat, the noise, the rain, the mud, the dust, the smells, the complete devastation, it was at times, overwhelming. I now understand the detached feeling people have when they've witnessed something extra-ordinary and say, "it was like I was watching a movie." I get it. It was beyond normal comprehension. Yet, amongst it all, my take away was the beautiful people and their tremendous resolve. They do not look desperate as you might anticipate in a population where some 1.3 million are still living in tent cities with little hope of returning home anytime soon. Quite the contrary, I saw faces of hope. I saw hard work, and I saw school kids impeccably dressed as they navigated the rubble and traffic of the crowded city street. It will take a long, long time for Haiti to climb back to what was already a meager state even before the earthquake. However, if their spirit and determination are indicators, I believe they will someday make the world proud.
Thank you Haiti, I am humbled.