Hurricane Matthew: Rebuilding

Thanks to a quick response from our donors, we were able to send money to our students to help purchase some items for them to start getting back on their feet.  Berlyne asked every student what their top 3 priorities were, and we tried to check off as many things off that list as we could.  Many students told us they needed a new bed, but due to the high cost of beds that was one item we were unable to purchase for anyone.  What we did get them: metal sheets to replace their roofs, wood, cement, clothes, and school supplies.

Click here to see more photos on our Facebook page.

Click here to donate towards our 2017-2018 scholarship fund to ensure these students can keep going to school next year!

Hurricane Matthew Response

At times like these, we are so thankful to have Berlyne working with us.  We have been able to keep in constant contact and she’s been keeping in touch with our students in return.

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Thanks to Berlyne and your donations, we were able to send money right away for Berlyne to purchase some much-needed items for our students and their families: rice, oil, water, water purification tablets, and some other essential home items.  Our students were so happy!

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We also sent money for our students in Les Cayes.  Unfortunately, Les Cayes was hit much harder than Leogane, so Jim has been working tirelessly through Bona Responds and Positive Ripples to provide more help for reconstruction.

Any donations received during the month of October will be set aside and distributed to our students to help them rebuild their home or purchase vital home items (beds, etc.).  Berlyne is contacting all of our students this week to see what their “top 3” requests are, and once we have that list and estimated costs, we will begin distributing the money accordingly.

Do you know that just a $10 donation can help buy a new roof for a student’s home?  Donate today.

Announcing: our first local staff member!

We are so, so, SO excited to announce that we have hired our first local staff member in Haiti!  Since we started Haiti Scholarships, we have relied heavily on Jean Kendy who tirelessly volunteered his time to help us with everything we needed to get done on the ground, as well as other volunteers like Onel and Lamarre, who have stepped up when needed.  We are incredibly thankful for all of their hard work, and are excited for them to work in conjunction with our new staff member: Berlyne Bien-Aime!

Berlyne was a translator for All Hands Volunteers, so most of our board members have worked closely with her in the past.  Those of you that know her can attest to the fact that there is always a smile on her face, and her laughter is infectious!  She also works with GOALS Haiti, and her passion and dedication to her work is unquestionable.  We are so excited to have her on board, and we’re even more excited about what this means for our organization and our students.

This has been made possible because of donors like YOU, and we are currently looking for personal or corporate donors to ensure that we can keep Berlyne on our staff, without affecting our scholarships.  If you are interested, please email us at contact@haitischolarships.org.

If you’re as excited as we are to have Berlyne on our staff, head over to our Facebook page and congratulate her on the new position!

Welcome aboard, Berlyne!

New Board Members!

We are so excited to “formally” announce and welcome our new members to the Board of Directors!  Georgeton Charles and Catherine Edouard Charlot are both from Haiti, so we are very excited to have them and their input on board.  Christa Michaud and Abby Oliva have both volunteered in Haiti, and have a great passion for what Haiti Scholarships does.  We are excited to have all of their talents, skills, and time to serve our students better.  We already had our first meeting and I know they are going to be a huge asset to this organization.  If you’d like to find out a little more about them, feel free to check out their profiles here.

We also want to thank Aaron Davis, Carrie Jackling, and Jonathan Godbey for their service on our board!

Alive and Kickin’!

Hey everybody! It’s been a while since we posted some general updates.

This semester, thanks to every one of our donors, we sponsored the most amount of students yet!

Also, we got our California state tax exemption notification! Still waiting on our federal application and our 501(c) status, but I’m hoping it’s as great news as our state exemption! With that done, fundraising will be a lot easier, and hopefully more bountiful 🙂

This year we also sent out our first ever newsletter to our donors (feel free to send me an email with your address if you didn’t get one!), and we hope to make this a regular event so our donors can stay up to date on our students and Haiti Scholarships happenings.

This year has been quite an interesting learning year, and we can’t wait to implement everything we have learned to make next year even better and more successful for our students!

Thanks to all of you who have supported our efforts, especially our monthly donors!

Colleges in Haiti suffer too

State University of Haiti before the earthquake

The state of education in Haiti isn’t just suffering at the elementary and secondary levels.  A high concentration of the colleges and universities could be found in Port-au-Prince, which is the area most devastated by the earthquake.  Students were unable to return to the damaged and destroyed academic buildings. 

According to a report conducted by Interuniversity Institute for Research and Development (INURED), the earthquake destroyed 28 of the 32 major universities.  It also killed almost 200 professors and school administrators and anywhere from 3,000 to 6,000 university students. 

Before the quake, the higher education system lacked qualified professors and sufficient teaching and learning resources.  In addition, a little over half of the universities didn’t have government accreditation. 

So what’s a nation to do? Most say that the whole education system needs to be reconstructed under the guidance of a regulatory body.  This would eliminate the overconcentration of schools in the capital that existed. 

In addition, many feel that the country should invest money in professionalizing the State University of Haiti, which is the largest of all the universities.  This would be highly effective because producing skilled workers is the first step towards economic stability in Haiti.

And how are skillers workers produced? By educating them, of course.