Meet Best Friends Gefftia and Joffanie

There are two 8th graders at Grace Emmanuel School you will always find together: Gefftia and Joffanie. They both are new this year, and have many things in common, including similar names that I can never seem to get right. They are only eight months apart in age (Joffanie is 14 and Gefftia will turn 14 next month), both want to be nurses, and both love Jesus.

Unlike most friendship pairs at school, the girls live in different villages. I go to visit their homes one afternoon and learn more about their stories.


We drive first to Joffanie’s home in Source Matelas. When we arrive, we are greeted by her mother. They live together in a small, wood-framed, tarp-walled, tin-roofed home.

I learn that Joffanie’s dad died when she was 10 years old. Joffanie’s stepfather provides for her and her mom by selling cement out of his depot nearby.

After praying for Joffanie and her family, we load up and head to Gefftia’s home in Cabaret.

Gefftia and her mom

Gefftia and her mother live in a wooden home behind a large church right off the main road. Six years ago, they were given this space to rent after their home collapsed in the earthquake. I find out her mom is a seamstress and can sew anything—she even made Gefftia’s school uniform.

Like Joffanie, Gefftia also lost her father at a young age. He had been with her mother for nine years when he died in 2009. Gefftia was 7.

Both girls possess a kindness and joy that makes you want to get to know them more. And both girls also still need a sponsor to partner with them and provide for their education at Grace Emmanuel School. Consider sponsoring one of them, or sharing the need with a family member or friend. Their lives are worth investing in! (View sponsorship information for Gefftia Rene or Joffanie Saint Louis.)


Jamie Curtis moved to Haiti in July 2014 to work as the liaison for Grace Emmanuel School. Over the last two years, she has visited the homes of over 200 students, sharing their stories to advocate for the needs of the school's most vulnerable students. Jamie has a degree in elementary education from IPFW (Fort Wayne, IN).