For the past eight years, New Covenant Presbyterian Church has sent its members to Haiti to try and address that country’s overwhelming needs, which dated long before the 2010 earthquake.

The church will host a fundraiser in support of its missionary teams at Fatz Cafe on Saturday, Aug. 9, from 8 to 10 a.m.

“It’s a way to be able to go every year,” said church member Terry Schilling. “(The community) can help the people of Haiti by helping us.”

Another church member, Marliyn Floyd, was joined by Schilling and Trig Penland for a trip to Haiti last month.

For many years, they and other volunteers have visited an area that is now closed for a year, due to land disputes. As an alternative, the three women traveled to another area to visit Alex’s House – an orphanage in the Kaliko area.

They provided ministry to widows, other women and men and children. The Aiken residents traveled with a group from Illinois who built new playground equipment.

“We have a core group that goes to Haiti every year,” Floyd sad. “The Haitians can’t catch a break” with the latest issue – a painful bone disease spread by mosquitoes.

She and Penland have been taking Creole lessons in Augusta over the past year to communicate better with Haitian residents. They took an especially rewarding trip in 2013.

“Trig and I brought our sewing machines to teach women how to sew fabrics that they could use for themselves or to sell,” Floyd said.

The tickets are $7 each and can be purchased in advance at the church, 526 Hitchcock Parkway, Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and on Friday from 9 a.m. to noon.

Senior writer Rob Novit is the Aiken Standard’s education reporter and has been with the newspaper since September 2001.