Our Journey to Family Preservation and Orphan Prevention
Heartline Ministries was founded in 2000 to strengthen Haitian families and prevent children from becoming orphans. Today, Heartline Ministries holistically addresses the root causes of orphanhood and extreme material poverty through multiple ministries with Haitian children and their families.
1989 – 2000 – Heartline’s Origin in a Children’s Home
Heartline Founders, John and Beth McHoul moved to Haiti as missionaries in 1989. From 1989-2000, the McHouls provided compassionate care for children relinquished for adoption and facilitated their adoptions into loving families in the U.S. and Canada.
For over a decade, we interacted with countless families surrendering their children to the children’s home for two primary reasons: 1. Mothers died during or shortly after childbirth as a result of inadequate or absent maternal care, and 2. Families were unable to afford another child due to the pressures of extreme material poverty.
2000 – Heartline Ministries Founded
Heartline Ministries shifted the ministry focus to family preservation and orphan prevention. The relationships formed with Haitian families who relinquished children to their home during the previous decade gave us unique insight into the needs of the community and provided the catalyst for this significant missional shift.
2007 – Heartline Maternity Center and Education Center Founded
The Heartline Education Center was founded as a small sewing school to teach women sewing skills they could employ to earn income to pay for food, health care, and their children’s educational costs. The Education Center has grown tremendously, now offering many additional vocational classes, with hundreds of women and men enrolled each year.
Heartline extensively canvassed local neighborhoods of Port au Prince to learn about the maternal health care needs and options for pregnant women. After recognizing the dire need for prenatal care and health education services, the Heartline Maternity Center was founded, first as a small pregnancy and education class and later growing into a full birth center.
2010 – Devastating Magnitude 7.0 Earthquake
After the catastrophic earthquake on January 12, 2010 that killed and injured hundreds of thousands of people, the Heartline Ministries property was turned into a field hospital that provided lifesaving surgeries, medical care, food, and support to countless survivors. Heartline’s long-term presence in Port au Prince and strong partnership network helped missionary and local staff rapidly galvanize a response.
After the earthquake, Heartline staff met with community leaders and families in the extremely impoverished Cité Soleil slum community to assess their greatest needs. After hearing that getting children back to school was a high priority, Heartline launched the student sponsorship program in partnership with a local school.
2013 – Men’s Discipleship Ministry and Heartline Bakery Founded
A discipleship and vocational training ministry with young Haitian men was established to address further issues affecting families in Haiti. Partnering with local churches to identify men with leadership potential, the inaugural men’s ministry provided formational discipleship ministry in combination with vocational training at the Heartline Bakery for six months. Today, the Outreach & Discipleship ministry continues to disciple young men and women and provide various forms of support in their outreach ministry at local prisons, a Kids Club, an orphanage for children with disabilities, and a village for elderly Haitians.
- The Heartline Bakery was founded to provide vocational training and jobs for previously unemployed men.
2015 – Student Sponsorship in Corail
- Heartline expanded the student sponsorship program to include children in Corail, a large post-earthquake community outside Port au Prince.
2017 – The 10 Year Anniversary of Maternity Center and Education Center
- Celebrating ten years since Heartline’s monumental shift to orphan prevention and family preservation.