Haiti Partners

July-December 2016

Lauren+ Date Archive, Haiti Partners, July-December 2016

Overview

Haiti Partners was founded in 2009 by John Engle and Kent Annan to help Haitians change Haiti through education. Many people have shaped who we are through their generosity and work. Our experience and programs go back to when John first moved to Haiti in 1991. Kent moved to Haiti in 2003. Several of our core Haitian and American staff have been collaborating for more than a dozen years to develop the core programs and approach of our work. We draw on our experience as we keep pushing ahead toward our vision.

Haiti Partners has five strategic objectives:

  1. Quality schooling: the development of schools that help children realize their potential while driving community development and lifelong learning.
  2. Holistic churches: the mobilization of churches to help people engage in justice and deepen in their faith.
  3. Entrepreneurship: creating successful social businesses and cultivating entrepreneurial and business skills.
  4. Collaborative leadership: the development of leaders who inspire groups, communities, and institutions to thrive
  5. Spiritual transformation: engaging partners to deepen faith and work for the common good.

Hurricane Matthew caused significant damage to homes, livestock, and infrastructure in Haiti. Although the schools that Haiti Partners supports were not too heavily affected, many children lost their homes due to the devastation. The resilience of the Haitian people and of the communities where Haiti Partners operates was evident and work to rebuild homes and create opportunities after the hurricane is underway.

Detailed Implementation Plan

Haiti Partners has been very busy in the last six months through continuing to work with Haitians to have quality schooling, holistic churches that stand up for all people, Micah Scholars who are working for social justice and leading Gospel centered churches, and helping assist those who were affected by Hurricane Matthew.

Quality Schooling

Haiti Partners works with six partner schools and operates a flagship school called the Children’s Academy. This past year there were 154 students attending the Children’s Academy and their parents volunteered 39,210 hours of their time to help with running the school. The six partner schools have continued to grow and three middle school grades were added for this school year. Between them, the six schools educate 1055 students. The quality of teaching at many schools in Haiti is very low and Haiti Partners is working hard to change this. This year 46 teachers at the schools where Haiti Partners works were trained by 13 volunteers from the Calvary Church in Michigan. All of the schools have grown in both quality and quantity and we are thankful to God for this.

Holistic Churches and Micah Scholars

The churches have continued on their mission to combat child slavery and promote women’s rights. There have been 2 new Bible study resources published and over 8,000 copies of our Bible studies have been distributed throughout Haiti. We have also led three campaigns for children’s rights, women’s rights, and creation care. These campaigns reached 600 pastors, 30 churches, and 4000 people. This has a huge impact on changing attitudes towards the vulnerable members of society and is the start of seeing communities transformed.

More exciting developments have been occurring with the Micah Scholars program. This past year the second class of Micah Scholars saw eight students graduate, which made up over 10% of all the graduates from our three partner seminaries. Four Micah Scholars were able to travel to Washington, DC and Richmond, Virginia for an exchange trip where they were able to learn and share with churches in the United States. Another exciting development in this program has been that past Micah Scholar graduates have begun teaching at two seminaries in Haiti, and have expanded the reach of this program by sharing about social justice and the church with 100 first year students.

The Savings and Credit Association (SCA) project has continued to grow. At least nine groups have been started at the time of this report but the number continues to grow. There are now roughly 200 people involved in these groups and the capital that they may be able to save will go a long way in supporting their communities and starting up small businesses.

Response to Hurricane Matthew

Hurricane Matthew landed on Haiti on October 4 with a death toll of 1000-1600 people, damages estimated at 1.89 billion dollars, 2.1 million people affected, and 1.4 million needing assistance. Roughly 175,000 people were left homeless. John Engle was interviewed about the Haitian people and their response to Hurricane Matthew: “Once again we see amazing resilience among the Haitian people that we can learn from. Anecdotally when we were driving yesterday we passed a water spot, where people convene to fill up their buckets for their homes. It was raining, everyone was soaked and yet they were smiling and laughing,” said Engle. “My 8-year old daughter said to my wife and I, ‘Why are they smiling? It’s a hurricane.’ We said that’s what Haitians know; to be resilient. They know how to make the most of a situation regardless of how tough it is.”

Haiti Partners has worked with Tearfund and the resilient Haitian population to help those in the most need rebuild after the Hurricane. They have helped to build 5 basic and sturdy single room structures, repaired 15 damaged homes, provided cash disbursements to school staff so that they could meet their short-term needs and reopen the school as soon as possible, and provided a goat to each student at the school as soon as part of a sustainable livestock program. Other activities were also carried out in response, including: shoring up the livelihoods of local families and helping the local economy by creating 22 new church-based SCAs, providing churches with building materials for those within their congregation to repair their homes, and at the Children’s Academy, we invested deeply in a single, two room home for a parent of two students whose previous home had never been rebuilt since the devastating 2010 earthquake. These extensive recovery efforts are important so that the progress sustained by these families, children, schools and churches is not derailed.

Looking Forward

At Haiti Partners we will continue to work with Haitians for quality education, holistic churches and Micah Scholars, entrepreneurship, and to support Haitians in rebuilding efforts after Hurricane Matthew. The growing success of the Savings and Credit Associations is encouraging and working with more churches to begin these groups will also be undertaken.

 

 

Stories of Transformation

Maxandre is the school principal of one of the partner schools. He knows that Haitian schools are grossly under-funded and desires to be a part of the solution to this problem. The idea of running and operating a social business to support the school has been very intriguing to him, but he was hesitant. After all, he is a school principal, not a businessman. But with the entrepreneurial spirit that he has, he took a risk. He spent substantial time training and learning about being in business. He also learned that this venture would require help from parents, teachers, community members, and Haiti Partners to be successful.

Through trusting in God, seeking assistance, and stepping out in faith there is now a poultry farm up and running. Maxandre partnered with three other local schools to run this farm and there are clear business plans. Grants and loans have been secured and there is a viable path for financial independence and sustainability for these schools. There is still a long way to go and running this business is not easy and there have been some roadblocks, but the drive to succeed and the knowledge gained through this experience will help to promote long-term economic development in these Haitian communities. From worrying about his abilities, to trusting in God and risking a lot, Maxandre has transformed into an entrepreneur who now has the potential to give back much more to his community than before.

Partnership Community

Kent Annan visited Canada twice, once in the summer and once in the fall, to share more about the work of Haiti Partners and his newest book, “Slow Kingdom Coming.” In the summer he visited churches in Toronto, Elmira, and Calgary and more than 300 people were able to attend! In the fall, Kent returned and spoke at iTeams Canada’s Transform 2016 event. It was a powerful experience for all of our Program Champions and iTeams staff to learn from his expertise and passion for God’s kingdom work.

In the fall, we were also visited by Jonathan Chan, a Program Coordinator with Haiti Partners who has been working with the organization since 2010. He was able to lend his expertise on program design, monitoring, and evaluation to our Forge Intern team. This training was very helpful to the interns before they left for their in-country evaluations and all of them were grateful for his insights.

Two new African-American churches in the Washington DC area are exploring partnership. A visit from some of the Micah Scholars has made these churches excited about what God has in store for Haiti and want to be a part of this work.

Financial Information

Total Income 2016 $82,694
Total Expenses 2016 $82,600
Overall 2016 Budget $72,250