haitian volunteers houston
Volunteers from Dallas hand out shoes and backpacks to Haitian asylum seekers in Houston on Sept. 25. Photo by Leonardo March

Rodney Rozier walked in the door of the NACC Receiving Center in Houston, one day after driving nearly six hours from Del Rio with his mother Jeanette and other family members. 

A technical glitch with the family’s volunteer registration prompted a terse exchange with the office manager. It nearly made Rozier’s 1,100-mile journey from West Palm Beach to help Haitian asylum seekers housed at the Houston shelter all for naught. 

“It felt bad because we came from Florida and drove to the border in Del Rio,” said Rozier, a young adult, hours after cramming into the lobby at 9 a.m., with nearly a dozen other eager volunteers. “We were just trying to do what we could to help in any way. We have no agenda.” 

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Sam is a reporter for The Haitian Times and a 2020 Report for America corps member. He has covered Haiti and its diaspora since 2018. His work has also appeared in USA Today, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review and Haiti Liberte. Sam can be reached at sam@haitiantimes.com or on Twitter @sambojarski.

Leonardo March

Leonardo March is Brooklyn-based visual journalist from Puerto Rico. In a previous life Leonardo was a photographer and graphic designer, skills he’s refocusing to cover the Haitian Diaspora in the US. Leonardo can be reached at Leonardo@haitiantimes.com