Our Annual Education Fund for Children and Teens in Transition

It’s back to school time in Haiti! Given a chance, empowering children enables them to improve their quality of life. This is still our philosophy and it is critical now because so many schools in Haiti collapsed in the earthquake. Our Education Fund includes two programs that are keeping children and young adults in school and we are asking for your continued support to help these kids for 2010/2011.

Last year when we began our School Sponsorship program we had eight children that were immediately funded, and this year we have at least seven more children on our list that need help during their first years of school. Most of the parents are homeless or live in slums and want a better life for their children. We were not able to meet with all of the children during our trips to Haiti after the earthquake, but we know they are safe and hope to see all of them in the coming months. One of the father’s girlfriends died in the earthquake along with another girlfriend of the boys we work with. Many of the schools are gone now, but we know that each child will be attending whether in a building, a makeshift structure, or a tent.

Our Teens in Transition Program is strong, and we have initiated a micro-loan this year that will help two recipients start a new business and build roots in the community. Everyone lived through the earthquake, but their rented rooms did not and some of the young men in Port-au-Prince are still living in tents in front of the National Palace. One now resides as the eldest of 70 children in an orphanage in La Plaine, and he also managed to graduate from carpentry school in March! Zanmi Lakay has been supporting these boys for years and we are thankful that they are safe, have food, are in school, are planning for the future, and we so proud of all of them. The boys living in Jacmel, who created the group Trézo, wrote an earthquake song and we collaborated with the Ciné Institute, Haiti’s film school, to make a video. The boys sang all over town in the streets, with people in tent camps, and atop their collapsed schools, and a shortened version of the video can be found on our blog. All four will be returning to school.

You can sponsor a child annually for $250.00, a young adult in the Teens in Transition program for $375.00, or make a donation to the general Education Fund to be used exclusively for these programs. Please know that your gift is directly making a difference in the lives of these children by allowing them to stay in school.

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