Thursday, November 2, 2006

Orangeville, Ontario

Hello Everyone!

Two fundraisers took place in the past few weeks, and we are grateful for the monies raised. In the United Kingdom, Francilien completed his second marathon this year, with proceeds to go to sponsoring student(s). Here in Orangeville, Janice, the owner of As We Grow, did a wonderful job on the (Loonies* for Haiti Day (*loonies are slang for Canadian $1 coins featuring the loon). Janice was totally organized, worked steadily all day, and encouraged every customer to donate. As well, she is donating a percentage of sales for the day. Fundraisers are doubly valuable, as they also serve to raise awareness for our efforts and for the extreme poverty in Haiti. A big Thank You! to all who worked so hard.

As many of you know, a partial list of students on the waiting list has been posted. We have only paid first trimeste fees for this year. The students will need help at Christmas in order to continue and be eligible to write exams, then pick up reports needed for 2nd and 3rd trimeste. Currently, we have no money for them. Only those in Lycee or apprenticeship are paid for the entire year.

Marlene D. was not accepted into nursing at Justinien [local hospital], and she needs a sponsor to complete her education at inivesite prive (private nursing schools). She has secured information from 2 schools. The tuition for each is $9000 Haitian ($1,300 US) per year for 4 years. Since the practicum takes place in Port-au-Prince, she needs another $300-$500 US for travel and living expenses. If she doesn't find a sponsor, everything stops for her. Why have we supported her the last 6 years if not to make a difference? If you know someone who could see her through 4 years of nursing achool, it would be wonderful. Another donor has come forward for both Elorge and Frandy starting next year, and will see them through medical school in Cuba for as long as it takes.

We have not yet found the resources to ship our donated supplies from here to Cap-Haitien, though we continue to look for someone who is able to help us with the shipment. Receipt of Bev's letter to the Governor General of Canada's office asking for help with shipping was acknowledged, with the comment to 'allow 6 weeks minimum for a response'.

In part, Bev said:

"After much research, we have found a shipping company in Fort Lauderdale which can ship safely to Cap-Haitien and through customs. The cost is $8.00 US per cubic foot. We estimate our supplies are about 80 cubic feet. The challenge is to truck the supplies from Ontario to Fort Lauderdale, and to pay for both the land trucking and the ocean shipping. We can use student volunteers to pack the shipment here."

It's now 5 months and counting, and there's been no further word. As well, Bev continues to send letters of enquiry to organizations and individuals who might be able to help.

Abel (in Cap-Haitien) tells me that we have a problem with the beans we have been distributing. Because we purchase in quantity before I leave, they are now full of ti bet yo (little bugs).

I plan to return to Haiti on November 20, and then stay for 4 or 5 months (March, April 2007). With the funds currently available, I will keep the house open for December, and keep the food program going as long as possible. As well, I will take Fritz the proceeds from all his paintings that have been sold by that time. {See paintings catalog).

Kenbe, Blessings,


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