Keep Hoping Alive In Hard Times
Dear Friends and Supporters,
At Lumiere D’Education, we believe transparency and honesty are critical for non-profit organizations to maintain trust with their supporters. Therefore, with a heavy heart, we must tell you that we have had to reduce the number of students at our school due to financial difficulties.
As you know, the COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on lives and economies across the globe. One of the impacts was that we had to cancel our Red Carpet Gala, which is normally our biggest fundraiser of the year.
There have also been changes in Haiti’s economy that have made it more difficult to provide the necessary funds for our school. The Haitian currency, the gourde, has greatly increased in strength against the US dollar, which means that the money we spend doesn’t go as far as it used to. For example, the amount of money we need to pay our teachers’ salaries has nearly doubled over the past few months.
All of this has put a serious strain on our budget, and we have come to the decision that we couldn’t keep all of our classes for this school year. We work hard to be a fiscally responsible organization that stretches each donated dollar as far as possible, but circumstances outside of our control have made things difficult.
Our students mean the world to us, and to be able to provide a free education that is so hard to come by in Haiti is truly the first step toward building a better Haiti for the future. A single year of primary school increases one’s wages earned as an adult by 5-15% for boys and typically even more for girls.
In addition to getting an education, coming to school every day provides our students with meals they may not get otherwise, clean uniforms, and fresh water. It is heartbreaking for us to have to reduce the classes we provide.
However, we are hopeful that we can bring these students back in the near future. We have a few ideas, but as always, we need your help to make it work.
First, we are planning a “Clear the Grid” fundraiser on our Facebook page. Children’s names and grades will be on a bingo-style grid. Donors can sponsor a child for $168.00 and that will pay for the cost of his or her education for the year. Once a child has a sponsor, his or her square will be checked off – with the goal being to get all of the boxes checked off.
We realize that for most people $168.00 is a pretty large donation, so we encourage you to team up with family, friends, and coworkers to split the cost. We’ll send each donor a thank you note with more details about the child being sponsored, including a picture, his or her hobbies, and favorite things.
We are also planning to hold a virtual auction. Since we weren’t able to hold our gala earlier this year, we still have the items we planned to auction in the spring. Initially, we were saving them for next year’s gala, but we can’t wait that long.
We’ll be posting more details about items up for auction and how to bid in the near future, so keep an eye on our Facebook page and website for the latest information.
Between these two fundraisers, we’re hopeful that we can raise the necessary funds to bring back all of our students once the pandemic is over.
Please consider donating to Lumiere D’Education to help us continue to provide free education to our students in Haiti. This generation of children can be the one to break the cycle of poverty in Haiti, but they need our help. And YOUR help.
Even a small donation helps, so please give what you’re able to and share with your friends. Together, our communities in the US and Haiti can come together to give these children the education they deserve.
The Lumiere D’Education Foundation Board