Union Makes Strength… Faith Makes Union!
This fundraising campaign is the first of a big project of global solidarity that I wish to implement. If it works as I hope it will, we will be able to create a non-profit organization to help Haitian families living in inhuman conditions, in order to give them what every human being is rightfully entitled to, such as the rights to live, to eat and to have a proper education.
Our mission is to choose Haitian families who have an urgent need for funds to cover their fundamental needs. The fundraising will be done separately for each chosen family. All the money received will go directly to the family in question. This will be made achievable via my personal and voluntary involvement in the management of this project, and with the crucial support of the trusted people helping me on the ground.
Driven, optimistic and philanthropist, young mother with a law degree from the University of Ottawa, I decided to focus my global solidarity efforts on causes directly impacting Haiti. I hold its population dearly in my heart. As a French-Canadian mother to a Canadian-Haitian daughter, I wish to use my knowledge to support this cause, in order to achieve a fair social justice for all.
In fall 2018, I went on an improvised trip from Dominican Republic to Haiti with my daughter who was only 18 months old at the time. On the way to the Citadel, I met wandering children who were playing in the sand with a knife. I asked my Haitian friend if I could go talk to them and let my daughter interact with them.
As I bent down to get to their height so I could talk to them while my daughter was interacting with them, my heart melted for Merlencka, a little girl about the same age as my daughter. She had a smile that all the money in the world couldn’t buy. I was smiling at the children and told them how beautiful they were. They were all so pure and innocent, unaware of the inequalities wealth and poverty could create in the world. Between the beautiful smiles we exchanged, indescribable pain and sadness were discerned. I offered some gourdes (the Haitian national currency) to the mother who was slowly coming near. Merlencka naively said: “Mom, we will be able to eat, now!” Feeling the tears swelling up in my eyes, I warmly waved goodbye to the children before they could see me cry; and carried on my way.
Meeting them changed my life. I left with an inner peace and a mission to come back and make a difference. I even placed their portrait in my living room so not a day would go by that I wouldn’t have a prayer for them. I reflected at length and I wondered how I could help them as well as I could, knowing I am just one person among an entire population. I want to make a difference and offer them a better life.
Finally, I asked my friend to find Merlencka’s family in order to know their story and be able to reach as many people as possible, so to help them through a fundraising campaign. The money collected will serve for food, medical care, dental care, clothing, and the children’s education in a state school.
I created this funding in order to ask for as much help as possible. “United for Merlencka” is the first project of what I hope will become the beginning of a wonderful human solidarity mission to fight extreme poverty in many Haitian communes.
Merlencka Jean Noel is a two years old little Haitian who lives along the 7 km road leading to the Citadel, which is located at 970 m above the city of Milot, in the Nord department of Haiti, with her family: her mother, her father, her sisters and her brother. All the children are aged between seven months old and nine years old. They all suffer from malnourishment. They have no access to education nor drinking water.
The mother just gave birth to her fifth child. She stays home to watch the children who play and run near a cliff and therefore has no income. In order to survive and feed her family, she picks little fruits and vegetables. The father is gardening to earn a few gourdes to feed his family, when there is a demand for that occupation.
Merlencka’s sisters are Nerloveda, 9 years old, Catie Titie, 7 years old, Baby Girl, 7 months old, and her brother is Christelin, 5 years old. They all suffer from malnourishment and all have visible skin wounds. The little boy has a serious eye injury; I do not know what it is as I only observed it. At first sight, he must have lost an eye in an accident.
Urgent Necessity for Fundamental Needs
The money collected will help the family appropriately feed the children, to heal and buy them clothes, and if God grants it, it will also pay the expenses related to their education. The closest state school is 2 km from the Citadel road, so I will have to check with the mother for the transportation possibilities to send the children to school; if the fundraising allows it.
I cannot predict any long-term goal because I will have to adjust to the donations received. I will go to the family in order to take the necessary actions to achieve the goals. The ultimate goal would be to give Merlencka and her family the necessary help so they can become financially self-sufficient, so they would flourish and grow knowing that the future is full of hope.