Month: June 2015

GFJ Students Participate in Bridge to Haiti PowerPoint Exchange

Students from George F. Johnson Elementary School in Endicott have created something special for the students at the Don Bosco Ecole Informatique in Grande Saline, Haiti.  As part of an after school enrichment program, students at GFJ created many PowerPoint presentations to share with the computer students in Haiti. Each presentation was made by a GFJ student, and contains pictures and information about life in Endicott. The creative presentations cover topics like school, friends, upstate New York weather, games, sports, favorite snacks, pets and families.  Each presentation was translated into Haitian Creole by Pastor Mike WIllis from the Vestal United Methodist Church, so the Haitian students will receive them in English and their native language.  Thank you to Pastor Mike for working with the kids after school and for all of his translation work.

But the presentations are not the only things that the GFJ students are sending to Haiti. The GFJ Student Council, teacher and advisor Lynn Gilyard, and parents helped to make about 50 pouches that will be delivered to the computer students in Haiti in July.  Each pouch contains a colorful flash drive with a PowerPoint presentation loaded on it and a note saying “Here is a flash drive for you. Enjoy the PowerPoint. From, GFJ Student Council”.


A few of the pouches created by the GFJ students. The flash drives look like animals and each contains a different presentation in English and Haitian Creole.

Because there are nearly 100 students in Grande Saline working on 15 computers, the GFJ students thought it might be nice for the Haitian students to have a place to save their work. They also thought that the drives would be the best way to send their work to Haiti.

The students in Grande Saline are also busy working on creating PowerPoint presentations to send back to the students at GFJ.  They are taking pictures for their presentations using digital cameras that were purchased by GFJ students last year and delivered by the 2015 Health for Haiti class. Thank you to all of the students for their time and excellent work and to the teachers in Endicott and in Grande Saline who have helped the students to create content to share with each other.

I am so impressed with what the GFJ students created, and I have no doubt that the students in Grande Saline will be thrilled to receive the presentations! Thank you GFJ!

Clean Water and Toilets Needed to Help Fight Cholera Epidemic in Haiti

Clean water and improved health are major goals of the Health for Haiti class. In a recent report on NPR’s Morning Edition, Dr. Louise Ivers, senior health adviser for Partners in Health, discusses cholera and the need for clean water and safe toilets in Haiti. Dr. Ivers emphasizes how critical this is for people living in rural areas and urban slums.

You can view or listen to the full report here:

Now that the people of Grande Saline have access to clean water, we are working on finding support to install solar power to run the filtration system.  In addition, Dr. Robinson has asked Health for Haiti to help to construct some bathroom facilities for the community.  Dr. Robinson suggests a two room bathroom, with two toilets in each room.  We are currently working with the Endwell Rotary to obtain funding to support construction of two of these bathrooms. It will cost about $1000 for each bathroom facility.  The bathrooms will be cared for and maintained by the community of Grande Saline. We hope to provide a few bathrooms for the community in 2015-2016.

Health for Haiti will continue to follow the health of this community and we are also planning for our 2016 students to present an education program discussing the importance of clean water and proper bathroom hygiene when we visit Grande Saline next January.

Below are some pictures of water being distributed today in Grande Saline.

Thank you for your support of Health for Haiti. We are currently accepting applications from students who are interested in participating in the 2016 class, and we are always accepting donations to support the Health for Haiti projects!

Computer Classes in Cite Soleil

BridgetoHaitiLogoThe children at the Good Samaritan Foundation Mission in Cite Soleil are continuing to enjoy their computer classes. There are over 100 children using the 15 computers at this location. I received a recent update from Pastor Vincent. He says, “We bring the children in one class at a time, but even then sometimes the line is long and we have to separate the class so every child can have a chance. We are hoping that one day we have 50 laptops all together so the all class can sit down at once. The thing that makes me so excited is that the kids are learning something that is a plus for their future.”  Pastor Vincent also asks that we continue to work to bring solar power equipment to the computer lab in Cite Soleil.  Although there is some electricity there, it is unreliable and sometimes there is no power for the laptops. Thanks to Pastor Vincent and his staff for the update and for all of their work to help provide this opportunity to the children in Cite Soleil.