2018 Newsletter

August, 2018

Dear Friends,

Once again, I must tell you how grateful we are for your continued support of the children in Borgne, Haiti. We have made the TEN YEAR MARK! That’s very exciting because many groups come and go in Haiti. We have had a sustained relationship and have been helping educate children for a decade, thanks to you. One of our founding members, Sarah Brownell, visits Borgne at least once a year and keeps our connection going strong.

If you are getting this letter, you are in our address book. We only have wonderful people there and we know so many of you already give generously to charity. This is another opportunity to help children in the poorest country in our hemisphere by providing an education and food — nourishing the mind, spirit and body. We have so many wonderful things going on. First of all, we provide education for 25 rural families, tuition for 29 primary students, secondary tuition for l6 students, and tuition for 2 tenth grade students. We hope to buy shoes and uniforms for these students at a cost of $2350.

In addition to this, we pay the salaries of teachers at 2 schools which are able to stay open because of us. Students who attend those schools who are not on scholarship can go for a fraction of the cost of normal tuition because of our paying the teachers.

The teachers are among the most dedicated I have ever seen. They truly value what they do. One time we showed up to do some teacher training and due to failure of communication, they didn’t know we were coming. They didn’t want to close school for training, so they came at night – in the pouring rain. Never have I worked with a more enthusiastic group of teachers. Another school that you helped us keep open a couple of years ago passed 100% of its 9th grade students in the National Exam. Two of those students were our scholarship kids.

We know that children who are very hungry can’t learn, and so we provide a meal each day for the children on scholarship. For many that is their only food of the day. We buy the food there and help to support the local economy. We hire people to cook the food who not only get up when it is still dark to make the fire to cook the food, but who also are like second mothers to the children who come for breakfast before school. We rent a building that serves as a place for the children to have their meal each day and a place to return to after school to work on homework. It also serves as a place for band practice, computer work, and sewing lessons.

We have a wonderful band that brings such joy to the students and some money as well when they play for weddings and funerals. They are a part of every celebration. When we first sent the instruments, everyone gathered in front of the church. The instruments were laid out on a table where the priest blessed them. Several students learned to play this summer in our program. Some instruments need to be repaired.

We have computers that we were able to get through a grant and also sewing machines from another grant — both a few years ago and some repairs are now in order.

We have a traveling librarian who goes from school to school and community to community with beautiful books on the back of a donkey! He has requested more books because he likes to do class presentations and multiple copies help.

This October we’re having a fundraiser as we have done for the past several years. This one is called Crockpot Craze and we will have chili, soups, stews as well as delicious breads and desserts. Last year students from the high school in Honeoye Falls helped decorate the hall and serve the food. They were so helpful and so beautiful with the attendees that this led to the formation of a high school youth group dedicated to helping others — the Honeoye Falls Sister Cities Youth Group.

So, in the midst of so much turmoil in this world, bright lights are shining. We are doing what all the religions teach and what people of good heart with no religion embrace — loving our neighbor. Please join us with whatever you can spare. Be assured that 100% of your donation will go to help the people of Borgne. We are all volunteers and there are no overhead expenses. We can’t do everything, but we can do something! That’s our motto. If you agree with us that education is a great investment, please join us to help these children who would never be able to go to school without you. There is no free education in Haiti.

Our budget runs about $46,000 per year which isn’t huge as similar organizations go, but so much good comes from every penny. We are grass roots, helping the people of Borgne educate their children. They are a faith-filled people who have been through so much, but they never give up. They say God is all good all the time. Somehow they know that God is with all of us on our journey. They inspire us.

Please join us in bring the light of learning to these beautiful children. There are so many worthy charities in this world, we are honored that you have chosen to help us and we will be good stewards of your donation. We hope that things are going well in your lives and hopefully, you will catch us up when you send in your donation this year. Thank you in advance for your help.

This comes with faith in the power of education, hope for the children in Borgne, and love for them and for you who help them so much!

Joan Haviland
President, Friends of Borgne, Inc.

Checks can be made out and sent to:
Friends of Borgne, Inc
PO Box 486
Honeoye Falls, NY 14472

We are a 501c3 organization and your donations are tax deductible.