Women Empowered

Haiti Projects Fall Newsletter 2012

The Pension

“Ever since I was a little girl, I have loved to cook.” – Ronage

“Cooking is what I love to do. Ever since I was a little girl, I have loved to cook. My mother Ronagetaught me. I was born in Fond des Blancs but left when I was seven. Then I lived and worked in Port au Prince for fifteen years. Mostly I worked in what we call “commerce.” For me that meant I was selling fried foods on the street. I didn’t want that life. Crooks would always steal from me. It was not good. That’s when I went to cooking school. And when the earthquake hit, I decided to come back to Fond des Blancs. Here I met people who asked me to help out at the guest house. Soon after, I was hired full-time. I like that I only prepare food. That’s all I do. There are others who take care of household chores. Of course, if something falls on the floor, I pick it up myself. I imagine a day when visitors are coming in and out of the house all the time. Lots of activity. My dream is to invite them to the future Pension restaurant where I will cook for them. I think then I can really know success, and my kids will have something for tomorrow. Of course, having money to send them to trade school or univer- sity only means that they will have to leave Fond des Blancs because we don’t have such things here. Not even a professional school to teach embroidery. It’s the same at the Pension. There are lots of things we don’t have that we need in Fond des Blancs. Simple things like a blender or a toaster and reliable electricity to keep them run- ning. Special pots and pans would help me be more efficient.”

The Libary

“I’m always eager to engage children, to interact with them.” – Yvenah

“Having grown up here in Fond des Blancs I know that it’s true: the town has improved so much since past times. Our library is one reason why. Lots of women come, many of them, with theirLibrary 1 children. In fact, forty percent of the people

who use the library now are women. And we hope for more. We have a lot of programs for their children. Every Saturday from 10AM to 1PM I read the children stories, play with them and teach them songs. I’m always eager to engage children, to interact with them. I really feel at ease when I’m doing that. My own child — he’s in Kindergarten – likes to pick up books in the library. He knows that we have a family library card for which each family pays only five gourdes. With it we can check out a book for fifteen days. I’ve read a lot of the history books myself. On Thursday nights and Sunday nights we have cultural activities, including talent shows and debates. In Fond des Blancs kids can now go to school starting at Kindergarten and continuing to the senior year in high school. That wasn’t always possible. I’m happy, too, that the teachers often encourage their stu- dents to come to the library to do research. I myself would like to see the new Haiti Projects library have a spacious hall, with tables and chairs where students can sit and read. When I ask the children what they would like to have in the new library, they say they would really appreciate having more activities. The parents in our community all want their children to have a good education. Many of them who I talk to also think it would be wonder- ful if there were a trade school nearby.”

The Clinic

“Most women don’t have the money to come down here so we bring the services to them.”

– Rosana

“My time at the Women’s Wellness clinic began with a one-month internship following the com- pletion of my classes. I’m glad that I decided to stay. I’ve been here since 2011 receivingClinic 2 patients for consultation and administering nec- essary vaccines. We also have a mobile clinic on Saturdays for the women of Fond des Blancs. Most of them don’t have money to come down here, so we bring the services to them. It helps the women of the area to access family planning services so they can have control over their lives.”

Haiti Projects Fall Newsletter 2012

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