Guest Post by Wissel Joseph, President of “Children for a New Haiti”
“Children and adults scavenge for recyclables and other usable items around a garbage truck at a dump on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince, Haiti.” That is a label of a picture below an article from NBC News titled “The poorest countries in the world.”
It was with sadness that I read the following statistics: “Poverty rate: 77% – Population: 10,123,787 – GDP: $7.35 billion (66th lowest) – GDP per capita: $726 (2nd lowest). The World Bank notes that half of Haiti’s population lives on less than $1 a day. 80% lives on less than $2 a day. 40.6% are unemployed based on an estimate in 2010.”
Haiti is among the countries where health and healthy decisions are ignored. The average resident will not live to see 50. Less than half of the eligible children were enrolled in primary education (the equivalent of elementary and middle school).
We, at the “Children for a New Haiti” are trying to bring a lifetime change especially in the remote area in Haiti. With a good staff, support from people like you and others, we are committed to making a difference where it matters.
This week, I was listening to an online radio station broadcasting from Haiti, two journalists comment how some children will stay inside their houses when school starts on October 1, for they do not want to see their friends next door going to school while they cannot. That broke my heart for I know that is the reality for I have seen it first hand. I have talked to parents of these little children and it is not easy to deal with their disappointment.
While I was growing up in Gonaives, I still remember how my mother would stay up late the night before the first day of school to sew my uniform. She could not get it ready earlier because she did not have the money to buy it. I have seen miracles happen where she would received a gift from people unexpectedly so that she could get us ready for the start of school.
Looking at it now, I feel blessed to be where I am, and I want to thank my mother, and those who helped her. I am pleased to see my children growing up and especially for them to understand the concept of sharing and giving. I have seen them willingly give up their clothes and shoes for “the children in Haiti”.
Together we can make a difference, do not think too hard, get on board, call a friend or a family. A little goes farther than you can imagine!