Alabama Home Builder is Building Hope in Haiti

Most of the residents of Lahatte, Haiti, currently live in houses made out of clay, leaves, wooden sticks and scraps of metal.

COCONUT CREEK, Fla. (April 19, 2012) — Poverty and despair took up residence in Lahatte, Haiti, long before the 2010 earthquake. Lahatte is like no other place on the island nation. It’s dry and dusty – huts made out of clay, leaves, and wooden sticks with scrap metal roofs dot most of the terrain. Because of the arid soil it’s very difficult to grow fruits and vegetables.

“Lahatte looks like a desert, there’s nothing tropical about it, even though it’s geographically situated in the Caribbean,” said Angel Aloma, Executive Director of Food For The Poor. “Life in Haiti is hard, but in Lahatte, it can be extremely difficult. By the grace of God, the people who live there are so resilient they’ve learned to survive on very little in harsh conditions. We’re so thankful that their cries and prayers for help are now being answered.”

Rob Owens, President of VTS Homes, Inc. located in Huntsville, Ala., reached out to Food For The Poor after seeing a news story about the work the organization is doing in Haiti in the fall of 2010. Owens and VTS partners David and Todd Slyman, all made good on a promise, that for every home VTS sold, they would make a donation to build homes in Haiti. 

The current community center in Lahatte. Through FFP, VTS Homes, Inc. is building homes and a new center that will double as a school in Lahatte.

“My work is a major portion of my life, so why not live out my faith in my work? VTS Homes believes in being our brother’s keeper whether it’s across the street or around the world. It’s exciting to be able to make a difference in the lives of these families,” said Owens, who first traveled to Haiti in 2002.

Located in L'Estère, a municipality in the Gonaives Arrondissement, tiny Lahatte sits just north of St. Marc. Thanks to VTS Homes, Inc. 15 families are moving into two-room concrete block homes with sanitation. Because of the efforts of dedicated donors, a water cistern has been installed for the rest of the community. The fundraising is far from over.  Plans are in the works to build a community center, which will double as a school and a meeting place, plus a playground for the children.

Partners of VTS Homes are planning to travel with Food For The Poor for the naming and inauguration of the village later this summer. If you would like to make a secure online donation toward the completion of the village in Lahatte, visit Those wishing to make a donation by check, please make it payable to Food For The Poor and mail to 6401 Lyons Road, Coconut Creek, FL 33073. Please include reference number “SC# 67887” to ensure your donation is accurately routed. All gifts are tax-deductible.

More than a dozen families are now moving into new FFP houses like this one.

Food For The Poor, named by The Chronicle of Philanthropy as the largest international relief and development organization in the nation, does much more than feed millions of the hungry poor in 17 countries of the Caribbean and Latin America. This interdenominational Christian ministry provides emergency relief assistance, clean water, medicines, educational materials, homes, support for orphans and the aged, skills training and micro-enterprise development assistance, with more than 96 percent of all donations going directly to programs that help the poor.

For more information, please visit


Wanda Wright
Food For The Poor
Public Relations
954-427-2222 x 6079