Monday, February 24, 2014

Hearts for Haiti

In 2010, Haiti, a naturally beautiful paradise nestled amongst the irony of extreme squalor and abject poverty, was hit by a devastating earthquake. In one iteration or another, everyone in Haiti was affected for the worse. Families were permanently damaged, with many people dying, institutions considered bedrocks destroyed and many children became orphaned. The imagery of Haiti’s devastation projected by news outlets around the world was gut-wrenching. Our hearts naturally bled for Haiti.

After the earthquake, millions gave aid, through loose and coordinated efforts and charities. Unfortunately, the aid has done little long-term to alleviate the abject and systemic poverty that is a way of life there, a far fall from being the first and only country to date to successfully lead a slave revolt.

Friends of mine began organizing “Hearts for Haiti” coordinated events and parties throughout the country to raise awareness and funds to help the rebuilding community. The events were largely successful, however, four years later, with the television camera lights shut off and ink dry from the pages of news articles that inspired us to care, still hobbling along is a complex and ragged Haiti, where life-changing aid did not get to the people most in need.

I am fortunate to be joined by a cast of everyday and influential philanthropic friends and current/former elected officials, both Democrat and Republican, to encourage once again, “Hearts for Haiti.” Our current focus is on promoting educational opportunities for higher education to substantially impoverished, first generation college students.

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