Dear Friend of the What If Foundation,
Summer camp has just wrapped up at the Fr. Jeri School. 300 students made their way to camp in July and August to enjoy a safe place to learn, explore, and have some fun.
Na Rive launched this program 20 years ago for just this purpose: so children and youths in Ti Plas Kazo would have a safe space and access to education all year round. Summer camp has continued to expand every year since, with field trips to nature and historical sites, new types of classes, and more children taking part.
But this year has been a challenging one. With the persistent economic and political turmoil in Haiti and the rising costs and violence that have come with it, many parents felt they had to keep their children home even when they have no means to put food on the table.
Says Program Director Lavarice Gaudin, “While Summer Camp is free to attend, the cost of everything else in the country has gone up drastically. Families are struggling to feed their children. There is no money left for the bus, and not all the streets are safe for walking. Our country is going through a very difficult time. We are feeling the toll it is taking on our students and our community.”
Join us in supporting the families of Ti Plas Kazo during this very challenging time.
But here is the wonderful and inspiring thing about Na Rive: they always forge ahead. For the campers who made it to school, summer was filled with joy and learning. Classes like dance, martial arts, and aquarelle (watercolor painting) helped the children express themselves in new ways and have fun with their classmates.
Students were able to continue their academic studies with English, calligraphy and computer lab classes, and learned income-generating skills like basket weaving, sewing and cooking, to help support their families.
And of course, every student and teacher received a hot, nutritious meal each day. It’s hard to overstate the sense of stability, strength, and hope that summer camp provides for these girls and boys. Lavarice has said it often: “No matter what Haiti faces, education is the path to a better future — for each child and for the country.”
Thank you for your compassion, generosity, and ongoing support for the children and families of Ti Plas Kazo. Together, we are supporting them to create a brighter future, one step at a time.
“Men anpil chay pa lou” (many hands make the load lighter).
Interim Executive Director