In much of Haiti people may be hungry and in danger from violence and the latest Covid spike, but they are relentless in their struggle for a better life.
Christian World Service partner the Karl Lévêque Cultural Institute (ICKL) is deeply involved in the people’s movement. Director Marc-Arthur Fils-Aimé asks for international solidarity in support of national sovereignty after the assassination of former President Jovenel Moïse on July 7.
The Haitian Human Rights Platform of which ICKL is a member plays a leading role in the Haitian Civil Rights Commission. The Commission is seeking a Haitian solution to the troubled political situation and does not want foreign intervention.
Since the earthquake in 2010, such intervention and an estimated US$13 billion in foreign aid have benefitted a small business elite including the late President. Voter turnout plummeted in every election organised under international guidance over the same period. The majority have faced rising prices, increased social disruption and widespread violence even as groups like ICKL organised for change.
Marc-Arthur says it has been much harder for ICKL to do its work in recent years. Moïse allowed gangs to control much of the country, crippling the economy and killing with impunity. The gangs control the southern road out of the capital Port-au-Prince, cutting the supply of petrol to the west and south, for example.
“The consequences of this situation greatly affect our work both in the office and in the field. Social unrest is a daily occurrence over almost the entire national territory. You don’t leave home without great concerns, even for an activity in Port-au-Prince,” he adds.
The most important question is what comes next for the Haitian people. ICKL says the answer must come from within Haiti this time.
“The people I met when I visited in 2014 had a very hard life but the parents were absolutely committed to giving the children the education that they deserved. Our funding is critical during these tough times and one way to express our solidarity with the people,” says International Programmes Coordinator, Trish Murray.
Last year, Send a Child to School was the most popular option in CWS’s Gifted scheme, raising $16,500 for ICKL’s work.
Donations make it possible to provide teacher training, classroom materials and infrastructure assistance to four community schools. Without these schools, there would be no education for the children.
CWS is grateful to donors for supporting ICKL and for their prayers for Haiti.
July 20, 2021