This is no longer a valid excuse. Not an excuse. Even just a few words can have a big impact, and everyone is capable of bringing a few words of Creole with them to Haiti. Making the effort to speak Creole in the community that you’re visiting speaks volumes to those around you.
It says: “I’m here for more than just a chance to do something different with my spring break, I’m genuinely interested in what YOU have to offer and the relationships we can build together.”
It says: “What is your name? Because your name is important to me and you don’t have to be an anonymous figure in the picture we take together. You are not anonymous.”
It says: “I can’t speak perfectly, because yes, there are a lot of differences in where we come from, not the least of which is language, but nevertheless we have something to learn from each other and there is something larger that ties us together.”
And it says: “I’m here because I care, and I care enough to leave Haiti knowing more about it after my trip than I did before.”
Finally, it probably also says: “I don’t take myself too too seriously because I’m willing to make mistakes that we will laugh about together… and not only am I okay with that, but I’m looking forward to laughing with you.”
Stay tuned for some upcoming posts concerning: Communication, language, translators, language learning and the like. If you’re ready to learn just some very basics that will go a long way, check out the video below: it turns out that teaching Creole via YouTube video is almost as much fun as speaking it.
by Erin Nguyen on February 26, 2015