French Honor Society Aids Haiti

EL French Honor Society brings support to Haitians after disastrous earthquake

EVE SLEMP

At 8:29 AM, tragedy arose in Haiti as a devastating earthquake struck the southern part of the island on August 14.

The 7.2 magnitude earthquake damaged 40,000 houses, killing over 1,200 citizens, and leaving over 9,000 people injured.

“Do these people ever get a break? Every two years, Haiti has a catastrophe that hits them,” French teacher Nathalie Casey said. The quake ravaged the town of Jeremie, where the Haitian Health Foundation (HHF) and East Lyme French Honor Society (FHS) worked closely.

Destruction of earthquake near Haiti capital Port Au Prince

Last year, FHS held many fundraisers such as pasta sales, soccer ball collections, and food drives to support Jeremie.

“It gets you so emotional. You give them a little bit of hope and then an earthquake strikes, and now we’re asking, ‘What are the soccer balls going to do for them?’” Mme Casey said.

Thousands of families are now homeless, there is a shortage of medical supplies, and now a second wave of disasters with sickness and infection. Though, with the help from societies like FHS and HHF, Haiti hopes see a light through the cracks of their ground.

“We hope to use our connection in Norwich (a HHF center) to reach out to the people living in Haiti,” said FHS president, senior Simone Cappon. “I would love to organize donations and connect with a school to see what we can do for the affected communities.”

Cappon and Mme Casey hope to work closely with ELHS to raise money to help the people suffering in Haiti through fundraisers and food drives. The money will go directly to HHF, as they will be able to use the money most efficiently to aid Haitians.

The Haitian earthquake received less attention than it called for because the next day, the Afghanistan crisis was broadcasted all over the news.

“I want to bring attention to this tragedy and ways we can help Haiti, but we need to move fast,” said Mme Casey.

Students can help by keeping updated on ELHS events to support Haiti, research online, listen for morning news announcements, and run.

Geralson Withrow, a resident of Niantic, who has a Haitian background, started a virtual 5k race to support Haiti with 100 percent of proceeds going to HHF. The race can be completed anywhere and anytime from October 1- 31, 2021.

Learn more about the Haiti 5k at: https://runsignup.com/virtualrunforhaiti5k

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