Coming Home to Haiti
From MFK Chief Executive Officer, Angela Brown Gilliam
The Haiti chapter of my life started in Cap-Haitien before I was 2 years old, and has never really closed. After growing up and spending 18 years here, this country that is so hard to understand – but easy to love, is, in fact, home. In the past decade, I have been very involved with other organizations in Haiti – but coming to work with Meds & Food for Kids has brought me full circle back to my hometown.
As I make monthly trips here and reconnect with old friends, I am thrilled to be making new ones at our MFK factory. MFK has done an outstanding job prioritizing our mission of impact on the lives of our employees. We have used our precious resources to provide fair salaries, health subsidies, and lunches so that our staff has a sustainable way to support their families. This is one of the pillars of our impactful mission, and is often undervalued in comparison to the medicine and food we produce that can save the lives of malnourished children.
On my first trip in January 2021, I met one of our cleaning staff in the kitchen – and learned that her father worked for my family mission organization when I was younger. She has been with MFK since its beginning, and even on a cleaner’s salary has kept her children in school and supported distant relatives. She is now ready to buy a small plot of land near our factory to finally build a home.
On my February trip, I chatted with another of our staff who cleans our production area, and who also happens to be from the side of Cap-Haitien where I spent my childhood. We have no past connection, but as I asked about his family and children, he shared that his daughter is in university medical school in Port-au-Prince. The realization that a cleaner in our factory has changed the trajectory of his family’s future with MFK support brought tears to my eyes.
This is profound impact, and is one of the many reasons why I am blessed to be back in my hometown as the CEO of MFK.
A piece of Haiti that has not changed.