Read Letters from Sharyn Babe
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Sharyn Babe's term of service as a Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) mission co-worker ended in 2012.
Sharyn Babe has served as a missionary to Haiti since 1987, first with Project HELP and since 1991 with the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). By invitation of the Episcopal Church of Haiti, Sharyn serves at the National Episcopal University of Haiti (UNEPH) as professor of educational technology and teacher training. Her skills, education, experience and tremendous successes in training rural teachers and leaders prompted the Episcopal Church to request that she be assigned to the Education Department of their fledgling university in the capital city of Port-au-Prince in 2006.
Prior to this, from 1989 to 2006, Sharyn and her husband, Rodney, worked with CODEP (Agricultural Development Program of the Comprehensive Development Project). CODEP’s Cormiers project was sponsored under a covenant between the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and the Episcopal Church of Haiti.
Initiated in 1989, the ambitious Cormiers project was designed to improve the lives of the residents of Cormiers through long-term education, health and agricultural development programs. Residents were directly involved in all aspects of organization and management, and they received training and support in planning and executing the various programs. The program focused on education and leadership development across three watersheds. It included extensive reforestation efforts and improved agricultural techniques and a large tilapia fish program, all of which continue to thrive.
Equally notable and lasting has been the educational program.
At CODEP, Sharyn was the educational advisor, assisting with hands-on teacher training and formation of rural teachers and students. In addition to teacher training, Sharyn led and oversaw multiple seminar programs for agricultural and community leaders. She also managed a rural guesthouse for a dozen years that received up to 40 church groups per year, providing hospitality and cross-cultural education to more than 350 visitors for weeklong stays. (Following the Babes’ move to Port-au-Prince in 2006, Rodney was recruited to direct PREPEP, a nationwide USAID-funded community development program.)
A native of Pennsylvania, Sharyn earned her B.A. in fine arts and an M.Ed. in counseling from Pennsylvania State University in State College, Pennsylvania. From 1983 to 1986 she was the coordinator of the Job Training Partnership Act programs for youth and adult literacy in Altoona, Pennsylvania. Prior to leaving for Haiti in 1987, she worked for the Juniata Valley school district as an elementary guidance counselor.
Evacuated from Haiti due to civil unrest in mid 2005, Sharyn took advantage of the time away to study for and receive a master’s degree in technology education at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University (Greensboro) before returning to Haiti a year later.
Currently Sharyn is on temporary disability. She was seriously injured in the collapse of her fifth story apartment during the January 12 earthquake. She sustained multiple breaks in her back and ribs, several head injuries and temporary paralysis of one leg. After being found in the rubble by an acquaintance, she received immediate medical evacuation to a Fort Lauderdale, Florida, hospital. Eight months postearthquake, practically all physical injuries have healed and she continues in rehabilitation.
Sharyn - January 16
Rodney - February 24