Dear Friend of the What If Foundation,
January 12th marked the 10th anniversary of the devastating earthquake in Haiti. The scope of the damage and loss from the 7.0 quake was unimaginable, and unfortunately, still haunts the country to this day. But as we think back to that time, we are also reminded of the humanity and compassion of our donors and supporters from all walks of life who opened their hearts to the children and families of Ti Plas Kazo and supported our efforts over the years.
In the decade since the earthquake, your donations have helped realize our founder Margaret and Fr. Jean Juste’s dream to build the Fr. Jeri School, providing a permanent home for the food, education and community support programs led by Na Rive. Together, we’ve served over 3.7 million meals to children and families and created a purpose-built location for the community food program. We’re providing access to a quality education and a chance for prosperity for over 400 students a year and growing. And we’re giving boys and girls in the neighborhood a safe place to eat, learn, and play — and their families, hope for a better and more just future.
For centuries, Haiti has faced natural disasters and systemic injustices, dating from slavery and foreign invasions to fraught trade and financial agreements. The current political and economic crisis is in many parts shaped by that injustice and inequality. But as dire as life can get for our Haitian friends, it is their resilience, strength and indomitable spirit that inspires me every day. Na Rive has managed to always create an environment of trust, warmth and joy in even the bleakest moments.
I feel fortunate and grateful to have such incredible partners and to work with a model that allows us to make a direct and immediate impact. As this new decade begins, I trust that together, we will always find a way forward. Piti piti, na rive.
With determination and hope,
Interim Executive Director