SEATTLE, Washington — Hope for Haiti hosted its second annual Hike for Haiti. This event aimed to raise funds to provide students, teachers and healthcare workers with vital support. The event ran from April 17 to May 17. Over that period, it raised more than $100,000 for the nonprofit’s long-term goals plus equipment necessary for immediate pandemic relief.
Hope for Haiti
Hope for Haiti is a nonprofit that aims to improve the quality of life for people in Haiti, with particular focus on children. Hope for Haiti accomplishes this by providing education, healthcare and clean water to villages in Haiti. According to the nonprofit’s website, thus far, the organization has sent 7,249 students to Hope for Haiti supported schools, conducted 16,343 medical consultations and provided 20.1 million gallons of clean water to families each year. While founded nearly 30 years ago, the organization continues setting long-term and short-term goals to decrease poverty in Haiti. Its plans for the next two to three years include:
- Importing and distributing $65 million in medical supplies and personal protective equipment (PPE) to the most vulnerable parts of southern Haiti to maintain the health of the Haitian people.
- Providing micro, small and medium enterprises in southern Haiti with $3 million to $5 million in grants to support business activities and the local economy.
- Partnering with families and farmers to plant one million fruit-bearing trees in southern Haiti to improve food security and income.
- Distributing 30,000 water filtration systems to families in southern Haiti to promote handwashing and consumption of safe drinking water.
In five years, the organization plans to provide $1 million worth of cash transfers and training to the 429 teachers in Hope for Haiti partner schools.
Hike for Haiti 2020
The desire to grow and achieve these poverty-reducing goals led to the need for further fundraising efforts. Thus, the Hike for Haiti was created. The event raises awareness and funds by having participants walk the equivalent of 200 flights of stairs, approximately 10.5 miles, over a one-month time period. This distance is roughly the equivalent that citizens in Marre à Coiffe walk to access clean water, healthcare and education. It costs $30 to participate in the event and all proceeds going directly to the nonprofit to help Haitians in need.
Last year, partakers gathered in-person to complete the challenge. However, this year, due to social distancing, Hope for Haiti encouraged participants to virtually complete the event and post pictures to social media using #HFHChallenge. Celebrities, such as athletes Anthony Duclair, Greg Senat and Jozy Altidore as well as TV and radio personalities like Carel Pedre, even signed on as Challenge Ambassadors to ignite a following and show support.
Hike for Haiti Response
The virtual event was reported in Good News Network, People and ABC Radio News. The Challenge Ambassadors helped raise nearly $105,000 for Hope for Haiti. The nonprofit plans to put the money toward its long-term goals and implement a COVID-19 plan. That would include distributing $10 million in medical supplies, medication and PPE to Haitians and Hope for Haiti healthcare partners. It would also go toward giving $30,000 in cash transfers to the 429 teachers in Hope for Haiti’s education network and mobilizing educators to share prevention strategies for COVID-19. In addition, Hope for Haiti would distribute 50,000 surgical masks to healthcare partners and the students in southern Haiti.
Hope for Haiti also plans to continue distributing hygiene kits and providing grants for vendors, farmers and female entrepreneurs, in addition to raising funds for the organization, Hike for Haiti also helped raise awareness of the organization’s long-term efforts and dedication to Haiti.
The successes of Hike for Haiti continues to propel the organization toward its goals. As Hope for Haiti continues to increase access to necessary resources like education and healthcare, the Haitian community thrives and children in Haiti experience the joy initially envisioned by the organization.
– Danielle Beatty