In 2012, Haitian Pilgrims established a college scholarship program in honor of Moise Nacier, who volunteered hundreds of hours to help our organization establish a strong relationship with the people of Boileau. Moise was Haitian and strongly believed in the value of education, as well as, being faithful to God, family, and community. Moise believed that supporting Haitian students in their pursuit of higher education was key to creating positive opportunities for the individual and Haiti.

Pierre-Louis Claudy and Desir Clerdyne were the first scholarship recipients of the Moise Nacier Scholarship Program in 2013. The students enrolled in a three-year primary teacher certification program and attended the Centre de Formation des Normaliens en Education Prescolaire et Fondamentale. The following year, Laurence Lebossiere was awarded the Moise Nacier Scholarship and he enrolled in a two year kindergarten teacher certificate program and attended École Normale de Jardinières D’Enfants des Cayes. All three scholarship beneficiaries graduated from their respective colleges in 2016 and began teaching at St. Therese School in Boileau.

In the fall of 2015, five graduates of St. Therese School were awarded Moise Nacier scholarships to enroll in collegiate degree programs. Wilke Raime currently attends Bishop Tharp Business & Technology Institute at the Université Episcopale d’Haïti pursuing an Associate’s Degree of Applied Science in Computer Systems and Support Technology. Saphine Destinas is pursuing a degree in economics at Université d’Etat d’Haïti École de Droit et Des Sciences Économiques des Cayes.  Marc-Donald Maitre and Chilove Iloxi are attending the Université Notre Dame d’Haïti for degrees in Agronomy. Kernsty Jeannot also attends Université Notre Dame d’Haïti, but is pursuing a degree in nursing. The students are expected to graduate between 2018 and 2020.

Fall 2017, two members of the Haitian Pilgrims Board, flew to Haiti to conduct in-person interviews with the 2017 scholarship candidates for the first time. Student applicants were required to successfully complete their school studies, pass the Haitian Department of Education’s National Exam, and submit letters of appeal and recommendation in addition to the interview. President of Haitian Pilgrims Board, Sue Ogle, relished the experience saying, “[The interview process] brought us so much closer to understanding these candidates and assess their preparation to successfully complete collegiate studies and determine their commitment to helping Haiti once they complete their degree.” Seven scholars were selected to receive the Moise Nacier Scholarship this year. Natalie Magloire, Fabienne Cadet, and Beauminois Gusma will pursue a five-year degree in Agronomy and Maitre Samantha, Mislaure Augustine, Berrith Catiana, and Ronise Pierre will pursue a four-year degree in Nursing at the Université Notre Dame d’Haïti.

Scholarship awards include school tuition and fees, books, university materials, uniforms, a laptop computer, and $150 annual stipend for miscellaneous expenses. If you are interested in contributing to our scholarship fund, please consider making a donation via PayPal.

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L’ECOLE SAINTE THERESE – Boileau School Update

Education is the cornerstone of Haiti becoming self-sustaining.  The progress in Boileau gives everyone hope! The school is crowded.  Even the storage closet is being used as a classroom.  They have energy—because you are providing a school lunch program. They have books – because of your gifts of talent and time and money. Their education will provide new solutions for tomorrow’s leadership in

When we first saw the school in Boileau — poles with a leaky tin roof and no walls – there were a little over 100 students.  The priest and school principal expected growth over the next several years, so we sized the new building for about 250 students – doubling the size.  The 2010 enrollment is 744 students! More than seven times the number of students eight years ago.  Your help has made this happen.

With the surge of earthquake refugees in the village, there are 150 new earthquake students.  This has added students at all class levels.  But the growth from 100 students to 600 students from Boileau residents is the result of several improvements which are direct consequence of help provided by your generous gifts.  The change from dropping out after third grade to completing ninth grade is because of you.

You have been providing a school lunch four days a week. Rice and beans is the standard cuisine, but with improvements in the gardening as a result of the Agriculture Project, they now get some tomatoes and cabbage for a little variety in nutrition and taste. For many of the students, this is their main meal of the day – or only meal of the day. After we provided the school building, the doctor told us that even though the building was a huge step forward, the kids were malnourished that they could not learn.  With consistent nourishment, they are doing great!!

It was only a few years ago that we noticed that although there were several students in the early grades, by third and fourth grades the numbers dropped dramatically.  By sixth and seventh grade there were only a handful of students.

When we explored the reasons that the kids dropped out, we learned that it was a combination of families not being able to afford the more expensive books of “higher grades” and the parents needed the kids to help at home – typically, to haul water and help take care of sick adults. Even though the villagers wanted their kids to get an education, few could do it.

Drilling more wells dramatically reduced the amount of time needed to walk to the well.  Also, the wells provided an alternative to water from the polluted streams.  Clean water reduced the amount of time that everyone in the family was in bed with various intestinal problems from water-borne bacteria and parasites. Since less time was needed to haul water and families were healthier, the kids could attend school!!

Generous gifts from donors make it possible to help provide books!  This means they can stay in school.  Previously, many kids had to quit school before they really mastered reading and writing…and since their parents had not been to school and had not learned to read or write, the next generation education stopped at third or fourth grade.  Now most are able to continue.  In 2010, there are 50 students in First Grade and 45 in Eighth Grade – almost no dropouts!! Life in Haiti will continue to be difficult, but the next generation will have problem solving tools provided by educations you made possible.

Education is a critical foundation for sustainable progress.

Update on Help – food, water , books, and benches

Update notes: The villagers in Boileau are working to recover from the quake and flooding rains.The water has started to abate and they are trying to salvage what they can from the flooded gardens.Some is recoverable; much was destroyed by the floods.

Since we had help in the pipeline, we’ve been able to get them some food and medicine. Thanks to help from you, even the families hit hardest are still able to have a little food.

The initial reports were that all the wells had survived the quake and floods.It turned out that three wells were actually damaged. Again, thanks to your sacrifices we could respond quickly to repair the three, damaged wells; they now have clean water again.

Kids are returning to school. Again, because of your generous donations, the refugee children will soon have benches and books.

Donations to the garage sale–and the hard work of volunteers–produced a huge impact: the two weekends generated $1,900.00. Despite the snow and cold, the first weekend earned $500The second weekend almost tripled that – $1,400. This money will help repair homes. We are planning a third garage sale on April 17.

We are working with a group in New Jersey to use the Boileau clinic as the treatment center for a medical mission in late April.  They will have 10 to 15 doctors and nurses there for a week.  The buildings in Cavaillon they planned to use were damaged by the earthquake. This is an exciting opportunity to collaborate with another group.  We are hoping to build some on-going collaboration for expanded medical care.

Thanks for everyone’s help!!