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#1305: Benson comments on Education in Haiti and Antoine replies
From: Guy Antoine <GuyAntoine@windowsonhaiti.com>
> It appears that most of the people who want to see an educated
Haiti are not rich.
Is that right? That may well be, in which case it would be another
terrible indictment of the middle/upper classes of Haiti. Could it be
though that: a) Haitians have become too untrustful of all fund-raising
efforts; b) Haitians have become too dependent on foreign money,
and therefore wait for the Soros or Gates foundations of the world,
not to mention USAID, to take care of the problems for them; c) there
is no institution currently able of administering the necessary funds
with complete "transparence" and with no ties to political aims?
Suggestions? Well, a kounbit needs to be organized. Grants
should be tied to matching contributions from the community.
Everyone in the Diaspora comes from somewhere in Haiti, and
most living in PaP also come from somewhere else. Can
associations to a regional organization or one's birthplace be
exploited in a competitive spirit to determine which "community"
in Haiti is more "kapab" (capable of doing more)?
Also, consider the gift of time. Many professionals living abroad
would be willing to work a bit for their country, especially in the
area of education, for no money at all, even at their own expense,
if there were structures in the country to welcome their assistance.
This is specially true of retired people, who do have more time
to spend at their own discretion. Some teachers already do it
in the summer. However, the news from home regarding
the rise in criminality and purported hostility to the diaspora are
very dicouraging to many. The vast majority of Haitians in the
diaspora do NOT want to become martyrs. Some may see this
as a lack of courage, I see it simply as human nature. Haitians
in Haiti need to develop the structures that will facilitate the
return, however temporary as it may be on an individual basis,
of the professionals that currently toil in foreign lands, or go to
the casinos to divert themselves in their retirement: the teachers,
the doctors, the nurses, and the tradesmen most importantly.
Will Haiti ready itself to let her children from abroad help her,
without fearing for their lives, and their expectations to be
treated with dignity? Can a partnership be established in real
If this were done, yes, you would still need funds, but the funds
you get would stretch a whole lot more.
Guy S. Antoine
Look thru & Imagine!