My friend recently received these pictures of the school that we are helping in September. Not only is the tent that the school is held in in really bad shape, but the school benches have been stolen! Fortunately, the government changed the start date of school from September 2 to October 1, so there is a little more time to sort this out. However, we leave for Haiti on Monday, Sept. 2.
We can purchase new school benches for $10.00 a piece. We will have to figure out a way to secure them while we are there, but we’d like to try to raise some money before Monday to purchase the benches.
With less than 3 weeks to go, here is a little pictorial update on the progress being made. Thanks to incredible and generous donations of many people this little dream is going to be a reality! I am confident that not only will 120 very deserving Haitian children start the new school year off right with new backpacks and school supplies, but the school will also be set with art and craft supplies for a year of creative fun! Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone for your continued support!
Additionally, the dream of starting a little library in the school is coming to fruition. We have a growing collection of children’s books in French to bring to the school in addition to the backpacks, school supplies and craft supplies. Books in Haitian Creole and French are greatly appreciated. There is a good selection picked out on the Be The Hope Amazon Wish List. Most of the items on the Wish List include free shipping on orders over $25.00 and they are shipped directly to us! http://amzn.com/w/FU237H4GPEN3
Heather Hinze expected to experience poverty and deplorable school conditions during her two-week May visit to post-earthquake Haiti.
But the magnitude of the destitution created by a 7.0 earthquake in 2010 was greater than she imagined. The earthquake killed more than 300,000 people and left more than 1 million people homeless.
“Nothing prepares you for the poverty,” said Hinze, founder of Be The Hope.
“It has taken me a lot of time to process it.
“People have asked me how was Haiti and my reply is, ‘I don’t know. It was so overwhelming.’ ”
Hinze delivered 70 backpacks of school supplies to two orphanages, Mix Emmanuel Primary School and Frem Orphanage. She also brought half of the clothing and shoes she collected as well as bubbles, coloring books, baseball bats and balls.
“My first trip was to get my feet wet and figure out what is going on,” said Hinze.
She learned about a non-profit, Michigan-based organization that ships containers weekly to Haiti. Hinze can purchase space by the square foot to send donated clothing.
By providing children with school supplies, Hinze believes she can alleviate to some extent the financial strain on families to send children to school. Her ultimate goal is education can help break the cycle of poverty existing in Haiti.
She already plans to return in mid-September with 120 backpacks. She is adopting two schools in the mountainous suburb of Fessart, above Port au Prince.
“The area is so poor that the teachers’ main problem is that the children are usually too hungry to concentrate on their learning,” said Hinze.
Many schools provide one meal a day for the students and “it is the only meal for many,” she said.
Hinze returned with handmade jewelry by Haitian women. Hinze is selling the bracelets, earrings and a few metal crosses as a fundraising project. Prices range from $8 to $20. The money goes to the Haitian artisans and her project.
Hinze also is accepting cash donations at her home, 9767 N. Baylor Drive, Fountain Hills. More information also is provided on her website at www.bethehopehaiti.org and Facebook page at bethehopehaiti.
Hinze welcomes support from any businesses, churches or organizations willing to have a box for donations in their office or lobbies for school supplies.
“Timing is perfect right now; stores will have displays soon on school supplies,” said Hinze.
Each backpack contains a hand pencil sharpener, a box of 24-count crayons, two 100-page composition notebooks, 12-count No. 2 pencils, a pencil case, eraser, 10-pack ball point pens and a 12-inch ruler.
“I’m having a hard time being here knowing that there is so much to be done there and I feel helpless,” she said.
“But at the same time, as far as orphanages and government go, the government is failing and how do you change a government that has been failing for so many years?”
Hinze said she tries to partner with individuals and organizations that she trusts.
“When you decide to give, you hope and pray it is legitimate.”
“It’s definitely challenging. It was not an easy trip,” said Hinze.
One week into the trip, Hinze said she broke down and cried for the first time: “I’ve never seen that level of poverty before, but you see a glimmer of hope in the job on the faces of the kids.”
The average family in the US spends $689.00 a year on back to school shopping. 78% of Haitians are poor (less than US$2 a day), and more than half (54%) live in extreme poverty (less than US$1 a day). Please help us help children in Haiti have the necessary school supplies to start the new school year off right.
Ballpoint pens (black or blue)
Crayons (24 count pack)
Ways you can help:
Pick up some extra supplies while doing your own back to school shopping.
Make a donation to our PayPal account and we’ll do the shopping.
Host a back to school drive at your church, workplace, child’s school, etc.
Our new fundraising campaign for the Ecole Fessart project just went live! Here’s the information:
Be The Hope is a registered non profit organization in the State of Arizona (with the hope of becoming a recognized 501(c)3 organization in the near future!) with a mission to provide backpacks full of school supplies to children in Haiti. We believe that education is a human right, not a privilege. THE IMPACT
In Haiti, 55% of the population lives below the poverty line of $1.25 per day. Due to the cost of school fees, school supplies, and uniforms many families can’t afford to send their children to school.
We believe if all Haitian children had access to an education, their potential to both end the cycle of poverty and contribute to the recovery of Haiti would increase. According to UNICEF, education contributes to greater civic participation and helps to combat youth violence, sexual harassment and human trafficking. It also results in a range of health benefits including lower infant mortality, reduced domestic violence and improved child nutrition. For many Haitian children, a school lunch is the only meal that they can count on receiving all day. Education can foster social empowerment, enabling an entire generation to become economically independent and positive contributors to society. Education is an important part of the successful rebuilding of Haiti. We just returned from Haiti on May 28, 2013. While there, we worked with children from Agape Orphanage, La Main Tendre (LMT) Orphanage, Frem Orphanage, and Mix Emmanuel Primary School. We brought clothing and shoes for the children, hosted a “pool” party and picnic for the children at LMT Orphanage, and distributed 85 filled backpacks to children at Frem Orphanage and Mix Emmanuel Primary School.
THE NEXT PROJECT
Ecole Fessart is located in the mountains high above Petionville, Haiti. It is an extremely poor area and it’s up a very steep mountain, which makes it difficult to reach. There are approximately 120 children attending the school. They currently have no permanent building. Classes are held in a tent that does not protect the interior from the elements. There are bare dirt floors and the school benches rot very easily from the rain and constant moisture. However, the children attend school even under these conditions. The head of the school is a lovely 29 year old man working in very difficult circumstances, but he is committed to the school and the children. There are a total of 6 teachers that are very rarely paid as there are no funds to do so. Through my friend Sarah’s amazing work, the school is provided with food once a month via a sponsor that she secured. This ensures that the children have at least one meal per day during the school week.
Our goal is to bring backpacks and school supplies for all of the 120 children to be delivered at the start of the new school year in September. Additionally, since the school has nothing, we would also like to bring any other classroom supplies (i.e. chalk, chalkboard erasers, art and craft supplies, etc.) that we know will go to good use.
Our goal is to provide the following wish list items to each child: · 1 – backpack
· 1 – hand pencil sharpener
· 1 – 24 pack of crayons
· 2 – 100 count Composition Notebooks
· 1 – pencil case
· 1 – eraser or pencil top erasers
· 5 – ballpoint pens (blue or black)
· 6 – number 2 pencils
· 1 – 12″ ruler
We are confident that we can achieve this goal, but we will need assistance. We understand that some people just can’t contribute financially, but you can still help us reach our goal!
· Please tell ALL of your friends, family, neighbors, and colleagues about our cause and this campaign.
· Share this campaign with your email lists and social media contacts.
· Become a fan of our Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/bethehopehaiti
· Follow our blog on www.bethehopehaiti.wordpress.com
· Visit our website www.bethehopehaiti.org
· Check out our Amazon Wish List for additional needed items: http://amzn.com/w/FU237H4GPEN3
· Set up your own fundraising event to benefit Be The Hope’s mission!
Our first Backpack Drive is officially underway at Desert Mountain High School! Over the course of the next few weeks students can donate new and gently used backpacks for children in Haiti. Monetary donations are also being accepted through the school in the form of checks made payable to DMHS with Be the Hope Haiti Club in the memo line. Monetary donations will be used to buy school supplies to fill the backpacks. The homeroom that donates the most backpacks will enjoy a Dunkin’ Donuts party on us!
If you would like to organize a Backpack Drive at your school, church, office, etc. please contact us! firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thursday, March 21
Be The Hope:Haiti will be at the Fountain Hills Farmers Market this Thursday (3/21/2013). We will be accepting monetary and backpack donations. We ask that the backpacks be either new or gently used (no holes, all zippers working, no tears, etc.) Monetary donations will be used to purchase school supplies to fill the backpacks. With beautiful 80 degree weather, we can’t think of a better way to spend a Thursday afternoon!
Saturday, April 13
On Saturday, April 13 from 10:00 – 4:00 we will be at the First Cyclovia Fountain Hills! The town of Fountain Hills, Arizona, will be closing several of its downtown streets to vehicular traffic, including the famed and aptly named Avenue of the Fountains. Cyclovia Fountain Hills is a free public event, welcoming cycling enthusiasts, walkers, runners, skaters, strollers, pets, and all others to come experience our “open streets” to meet their neighbors, learn about their community, take part in a variety of physical activities, and enjoy plenty of local vendors, food and drinks.
The goal of Cyclovia is to bring families outside of their homes to enjoy the streets of Fountain Hills while participating in healthy, active living through a series of activities, demonstrations and entertainment, including:
“Art Walk” on the Avenue
Guided Hiking Tours of Fountain Park Overlook Trail
Bicycle Safety and Helmet Fitting Workshops
FREE Yoga, Pilates and Zumba Classes
Kids Tricycle Races
Bicycle Decorating Stations
FREE Bicycle Tune-Ups and Repairs
Dance Clinics and Demonstrations
Food from Local Restaurants and Vendors
Live Music and Entertainment
And much more on the way!
Once again, we will be accepting monetary and backpack donations at this event. We’re really excited to be a part of this “first” event in Fountain Hills! http://cycloviafountainhills.com/