Human Capital Up (364 Students)

Newsletter issue: 
December 2011
News item date: 
Wednesday, December 14, 2011

By Tim Scordato

It might seem somewhat strange that “charity” is not a word one hears around The Haitian Project.  It is not that we don’t recognize the need for help, but instead that we think of that help as an investment, not just in the individual, but in the society as a whole.  That word, investment, has become a driving force for growth and entrepreneurship in the lives of THP supporters Ross and Claire Arnold of Atlanta, GA. 

Having been with THP for over a decade, the Arnolds are a great example of what make the Project so strong.  Our core sustainers stay with us much longer than the average supporter of other organizations.  Not only do they remain for a longer period of time, they also become more deeply involved, both personally and spiritually.

Ross is the Chief Executive Officer of Quest Capital Corp., a private investment and management company, and Claire (or “Yum” as she is familiarly called), among many of her successful investments, founded Leapfrog IT services in 1998.

The Arnolds stumbled upon THP when, in 1999, former Quest Capital employee Kevin Schuyler, currently a member of THP’s Board of Directors, brought to Ross’s attention the opportunity to join him on a 1,300 mile trip to Louverture Cleary School - which then held 125 students, less than half of the current 370 student enrollment today .

“[LCS] is a very caring and loving place.  Everyone - from the ladies in the kitchen to the Moynihans – everyone is united in a common goal,” Ross remarked.

Yum added that she was initially intrigued by “the smart spending Louverture Cleary affords…by the fact that a relatively small amount of money can support all living and educational needs of an individual for an entire year.”

As an example of their ever deepening involvement with THP, in 2010 Claire helped provide a creative education solution for the oldest of the Moynihan daughters by connecting her with Mary Baldwin College.  Claire had served on the Board of Trustees at Mary Baldwin for 20 years and as the Board Chair for five.

Mikhaila enrolled in their PEG (Program for the Exceptionally gifted), which allows her to complete high school and college together.  When asked why she suggested Mary Baldwin, Claire said, “I knew that Mikhaila had spent her formative years within the nurturing environment of LCS. Being a Moynihan, I also knew Mikhaila had to be ‘scary bright.’”

“It was an odd coincidence that has led to a very fine response,” Deacon Moynihan said in regards to Yum’s help with his daughter’s search. “The Arnolds have provided many opportunities for my family, and especially for THP to grow through direct financial support, helping to network and grow the size of our community.”

In response to THP’s work and the mission of the school, Ross explained his support, saying, “In terms of human capital, I can’t think of a better investment.”