By: Portlight, 2:05 PM GMT on November 16, 2010
The shipment of Christmas gifts you made possible for children in Haiti arrived in Port au Prince yesterday and are being distributed today and tomorrow!!! We should have photos to post soon...
Merry Christmas, everybody!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Boxes and boxes of toys, candy and other assorted goodies are shipping out today from Charleston to Port au Prince...then on to our friends at Universite Quisqueya.
Below are some photos...Many people are making this possible...Including you...Big thanks to all!!!!
CHRISTMAS IN HAITI
We began this year making a difference in Haiti in the months following the January 12 earthquake. Your contributions provided food, shelter, and water, as well as medical care, equipment and supplies for thousands of Haitians. We cut through bureaucratic red tape and made a significant direct impact.
But it's important to remember: there is still much suffering in Haiti. Over one million people, including tens of thousands of children, are still living in makeshift tent camps. Hope is scarce.
So...let's bring some Holiday Joy to Haiti's children. Let's end this year as we began it: making a difference in Haiti.
What: Christmas in Haiti It is a simple concept. We want to provide Christmas presents for Haitian children living in camps.
When: Over the next two months.
Where: Refugee camps in Haiti
Who: As many children in as many camps as we are able to serve.
How: Well...that's up to you. A contribution of $20 will provide a present for one child. The extent of our reach will depend upon the budget we raise. Our dream is to serve thousands. We'd love to arrange for Santa to visit some of the camps.
Please remember the children of Haiti this Christmas. Please support Christmas in Haiti with your thoughts, prayers...and, of course, your financial contribution.
You can use the PayPal button at www.portlight.org
Or you can make your check payable to: Portlight Strategies, Inc.
and send it to us at: 2043 Maybank Charleston SC 29412
Also....PLEASE share this message...forward it to your e-mail lists, post it to your Facebook page, Tweet it...whatever it takes to spread the story of our work.
Thank you for your faith in these efforts!!!!
An open letter from Richard Lumarque, our Haiti Coordinator
HAITI TOYS FOR CHRISTMAS DREAM
I want to start by thanking you for the interest and sincere caring your organization has shown to the underprivileged and poor people of the island of Haiti.
After being devastated by the earthquake of January 12th of this year where countless people lost their lives and forcing countless men, women and children to live in sub-human conditions, the survivors are now faced with an outbreak of cholera that threatens all of them. With the holidays coming, we want, once again, to come up with a way to give these people a ray of hope. We want to remind them that Portlight Strategies and the good-hearted people of America have not forgotten about them; we want them to know that we share their pain and suffering.
If you watch the news as I do, you will see that the big NGOs with millions of dollars in donations are still facing the same difficulties they have since the earthquake: supplies are locked up in warehouses and not being distributed in a timely manner to help the people that need these supplies the most. After doing some research on how we can make a difference for the Holidays, I think we can accomplish the following objective:
The Sean Penn foundation had taken a special interest in a camp located in the city of Petionville that holds about 40,000 of the homeless. He started a school for primary education which provides about 250 primary school students an opportunity for a quality education. The school was being cared for by another NGO but they too stopped providing the necessary funds to sustain the school. University Quisqueya up to now has been sustaining the operation of the school which employs 8 to 10 teachers with a salary of $400.00US for each teacher. The University is also facing difficult times as the entire University’s buildings had been destroyed by the earthquake.
There is also a school on the outskirts of the city of Jacmel called Centre Educatif de Fond Jean-Noel that provides education for about 600 students from Kindergarten through High School; the students’ ages vary from 5 to 18 years old. They even have a computer lab. That school was also supported by the efforts of the University Quisqueya and again, the funding has dried up. Soon, these 800 students will be without any opportunity for organized education unless we do something. These children are in desperate need of our help.
My dream is to be able to raise enough funds to pay for the salary of about 12 to 15 teachers for the next year. $5,000.00US a month for 12 months = $60,000.00US. In addition to the salaries for the staff, they need all kinds of school supplies; backpacks, pens, pencils, notepads and even lunch boxes. My further hope is to raise enough to buy some simple Christmas presents for about 800 students to bring a small ray of hope to these children whose lives have been forever changed by this tragedy.
Also, Haiti has been without electricity for about a month now. They need good quality flashlights, batteries and lanterns to sustain them. The kids are so desperate for a decent education that they are willing to learn with a lamp.
In the face of this devastation, we can make a difference. The key to the future of Haiti will be the children we educate today; these children are the future leaders of Haiti. They can lead these people to progress, democracy and a government without corruption but only if they receive the education that we in America take for granted.
I pray that we can find God’s Grace and Blessing in this endeavor and accomplish this task. We have very little time to accomplish this task but if we give of ourselves, we can do it.
Thank you for all your support, love and caring. God bless Portlight and God Bless the United States of America.
Updated: 7:35 PM GMT on December 23, 2010