June 2013

An Enduring Impact

An Enduring ImpactBy Tara Kingsley THP Volunteer With their graduation June 15, the 46 students of the Class of 2013 marked the end of their secondary education but certainly not their dedication to serving others and elevating their country.Besides excelling academically, the Philo students have embodied the charism of The Haitian Project (THP) by offering their language skills as translators at the Santo 19 neighborhood clinic, sharing their education with neighborhood children as tutors and mentors, setting the example of good sportsmanship and teamwork on the basketball court, and bringing joy to the school during theatrical productions.

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Highlights June 2013

Raising Friends: In April, Board Members Betsy Bowman and John Fiorenza hosted a “friend-raiser” in Arlington,MA. The event, a great success, included Haitian food, dominoes, metalwork sales and an informational “THP scavenger hunt.” “The purpose was to introduce people — and in some cases re-engage people — with THP,” Bowman says. “Many were so generous and involved after the earthquake and often ask how things are going. This was an opportunity to provide some updates, and remind people that the Project and the school are going strong.” Anyone interested in hosting a “friend-raiser” should contact THP Development at (401) 351-3624. Professional Development: The Haitian Project’s Academic Committee has been working hard to identify instructional priorities at Louverture Cleary. The committee conducted classroom observations, working closely with school administration. In February, Board Members Pat Newell and Betsy Bowman traveled to LCS to work alongside Dean of Academics Marjorie Mombrun to determine instructional strengths as well as areas for growth. These evaluations helped form a statement of best practices which will be used to shape development activities in the classroom. The statement will also structure ongoing professional development over the summer and next year when a follow-up review will be conducted by a visiting team. 

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Talk About Language

By HPN StaffLouverture Cleary School (LCS) students Marianna Moynihan and Malherbe Millien speak to each other in one of the four languages taught at the school.Haiti has two national languages, both of which contribute to the culture and function of the country. Being bilingual has its advantages for individuals, but it can present challenges for a developing country. HPN interviewed four people on language inHaitiand at Louverture Cleary School (LCS).   Deacon Patrick Moynihan, President of THP, has lived and worked in Haitiwith his family for 16 years. His daughter, Marianna, is a Katryem (9th-grade) student at LCS, where she and Philo (senior) student Malherbe Millien are taught in Kreyòl, French, English and Spanish. Patrick Brun is a Haitian business owner and former THP Board Member.

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Two Right Hands

By Colby Bowker (THP Director of Communications)It has been common for The Haitian Project (THP) staff to rise from the ranks of the Project’s exceptional Volunteers. Still, the tremendous tenure of THP’s two outgoing Vice Presidents stands out. Reese (Jarrett) Grondin, VP of Operations, and Elizabeth (O’Connell) Cross, VP of Community Development, have been working for THP longer than any other employee except Deacon Patrick Moynihan, President of THP. Grondin and Cross both leave their positions with THP in June after more than a decade of inspiring service.

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Significance of a Gift

By Sunny-Dae Larson (THP Volunteer) John Murphy was a parishioner atSt. Joseph’s onHope StreetinProvidence,RI, when fellow parishioners Brian Moynihan and Charlie Wharton came to him for help during a critical moment in the early years of The Haitian Project (then called the Providence Haitian Project). They needed a loan — not just any loan, but one secured in faith alone. At the time, the Providence Haitian Project had no real assets to offer. “When Brian and Charlie came to me, asking for help, I didn’t make that type of loan at the time,” Murphy says. “But Brian and Charlie said they’d guarantee it, so I trusted [them] and made the loan anyway.”

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Student View and Volunteer View

Volunteer Kaitlyn Guzik (left) and LCS student Nadine Certitude (center) assist a neighborhood child during Ekòl Ankourajman, LCS’ after-school literacy program. 

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Reading for a Better Future

By Elizabeth Cross (VP of Community Development)Thanks to the support of Colleen Vento (left) and Grace Di Ponio (right), as well as the OLS Parent Teacher Guild and the Knights of Columbus St. Francis Council #4401, these proud students read their way to helping create a brighter future for Haiti. Ask 1st-graders at Our Lady of Sorrows (OLS) School in Farmington, MI, about the call to service as Catholics, Haiti, or Louverture Cleary School (LCS), and you will be amazed by how much they know. That’s because for the past two years Principal Anne Whitfield and the teachers at OLS have carved out a week for their 1st-through 8th-graders to learn everything they can about the students of LCS and what their faith teaches them about the importance of that relationship. 

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