Monday, June 11, 2007

News from Cap-Haitien; Travel Dates

Hello Everyone,

Auguste writes that Sherline was taken to emergency for an eye infection. It cleared up with antibiotics, and she is our latest recipient of glasses.

Auguste also went out to the market and purchased a hat and sunglasses for her, as he now knows that eyes need to be protected. Dieugrand has a UTI. Diuemane has malaria. There are an average of 25 coming each Sunday for food sacks. Claudy came down the mountain for a dental emergency. The frustration is that although we have connected with a Haitian dentist, most of his work is extractions (rache) due to a lifetime of neglect.

We are scheduled to begin construction for opening up the kitchen staircase to the roof on July 2nd. The owner is purchasing materials; we are paying labor.

The annual 'Hamburgers for Haiti' will take place on June 14 at St. Thomas Aquinas High School in London (Ontario). Thanks to Chaplain Brad; board members Pat and Dave will be flipping burgers also.

Many thanks to all those who are working or have been working the past few months to raise funds to support Starthrower's work in Haiti (see fundraisers on the web site).

We also have an incoming gift of solar panels, inverter and batteries; though I am not certain how and when they will be delivered, I know they have been secured. Many thanks!

More news from Cap-Haitien as soon as possible.
I head to Ft Lauderdale June 28, then on to Cap on June 30.


National Exams in Haiti

Hi all!
As June moves along and I prepare to return to Haiti, my thoughts are with our young people who are writing (konpoze) national exams.

Keeping in mind that UN statistics show that Haiti has a population of between 8 and 9 million, and 55% of that pop. is 18 and younger :

Starthrower targets teens and young adults because they are a vital but overlooked segment of Haitian society. It is easy to raise awareness and funds for infants and toddlers; teens and young adults LOOK self sufficient. We know better.

In the entire country this year:

There are 240,000 candidates writing the final year of primary to enter high school (6eme AF).
Now for the group [teens and young adults] that Starthrower supports, national exams must be written:
  • the third year of high school (called 9eme AF - ane fondamental)
  • the 6th year of high school (called Rheto)
  • the 7th and final year (called Philo)
This year, nationally, there are:
  • 148,000 candidates writing 9eme (June 19/20)
  • 75,000 candidates writing Rheto (nouvo, for the first time)(June 25-8)
  • 73,000 candidates writing Philo (nouvo - for the first time)
  • 34,000 candidates writing Rheto for the second time (July 2-5)
  • 14,000 candidates writing Philo for the second try
A youth population of OVER FOUR MILLION.
A total of 344,000
candidates writing national exams at the high school level in the entire country.

Yet only 87,000 by the final year and 14,000 of those are trying for the second time. Look at the rate of attrition. The young people lost.
The following is an excerpt from a speech delivered May 8, 2002 to the UN General Assembly on Children. The message was written and delivered by Gabriela Azarduy Arrieta,13, from Bolivia, and Audrey Cheynut, 17, from Monaco.
We are not the sources of problems; we are the resources that are needed to solve them. We are not expenses; we are investments. We are not just young people; we are people and citizens of this world. . .
You call us the future but we are also the present.
Your support in the present is an investment in a much brighter future for Haiti. Thanks to every Starthrower reading this. Please stay with us.


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