Haiti Update - June 2015
by Vernon Giesbrecht
Dear friend of Double Harvest,
AN EDUCATION ACHIEVEMENT – The month of June marks the end of a school year. For many High School students, it also marks a rite of passage - Graduation! These students have grown into young men and women, and have developed educationally, physically, socially and, our prayer is, morally and spiritually. Their grounding and accomplishments should stand them in good stead as they look to the future. On June 21, our school in Haiti also celebrated the graduation of twenty-four Grade 13 students! Seven of these students have attended the school for their entire education thus far! As representatives of Double Harvest USA, my wife and a friend witnessed the three-hour graduation service, congratulated the students, families and teachers, and gave each graduate a Bible.
A REMARKABLE ACHIEVEMENT – This is an exceptional rite of passage, especially in a developing country in which the odds are stacked against them. The faithful Sponsors of our students (over 500 in Pre-school – Grade 13) understand what their $45/month can mean in this nation. Haiti stands alone in the Caribbean with the highest rates of illiteracy and abject poverty. The key to reversing this downward spiral is quality education. But Haiti’s public education is in crisis mode: untrained teachers, little access in rural areas, high costs for 50% of the population, and sanitation, equipment and supplies are sorely lacking. Seen as a top priority issue for the future of the nation, the Double Harvest School is helping to meet the need, drawing students from the surrounding community. The goal remains to provide a quality education, trained Haitian teachers, a Bible curriculum, decent facilities, a nutritious noon meal, and medical care by our on-site Clinic. The school has been rated in the 95th percentile by the Haiti Department of Education, with the vast majority of students in key grades “succeeding” this past year! Above all, the Bible classes and the Christian worldview infused into the classes are key to the students’ moral, ethical and spiritual development. If you or a friend would be interested in Sponsorship, our website will give you more information. (While there, see also “Haiti News Archives”: August 2012 & June 2013.)
FUTURE ACHIEVEMENT – The excellent education and test results have not only brought notoriety to the school but have also prepared our graduates for University (as it is referred to in Haiti). A significant question has been asked of us: “After graduation, where do they go? Especially when combined unemployment and underemployment is at 70%?!” With so much talent and initiative represented in these students, we have established a “College Scholarship Fund”. A $5.50/day investment, or $2000/year, will fund one student at a prominent university in Port-au-Prince, taking them to the next level of professional development in their chosen careers. They are needed to rebuild this struggling country. Your help (any amount) or related questions will be welcomed!