The Republic of Haiti, or “Ayiti” (mountainous country), is the third largest country in the Caribbean. On January 1, 1804, Haiti declared its independence from the French, leading to the end of slavery. Although Haiti was able to win its independence and end slavery, political and economic corruption became prevalent for years to come. Currently, Haiti is the poorest country in the western hemisphere and according to the United Nations Human Development Index (HDI), Haiti is ranked 145 out of 169 countries. The HDI is measured by three dimensions: health (mean life expectancy), education (mean years and expected years of schooling), and living standards (income per capita).
Haiti’s education system is comprised of privatized, subsidized, and non-profit educational institutions. Unfortunately, the quality of education is limited because the education system is predominantly comprised of unaccredited and inadequately funded institutions. Furthermore, institutions that meet standards are typically centralized to the capitol city of Port au Prince, making it inaccessible to vast amounts of people.
The current state of Haiti’s healthcare does nothing to reverse the effects of poverty. With 80% of the population under the poverty line, the people of Haiti suffer from problems such as malnutrition, limited access to clean water, typhoid fever, cholera, and HIV/AIDS.
On January 12, 2010, an earthquake measuring 7.0 on the Richter Scale struck Haiti near the capital city of Port-au-Prince. The destruction left by this earthquake became the worst documented natural disaster in world history. According to the U.S. Geology Survey, an estimated 222, 570 people were killed, 300,000 people were injured, and over one million citizens were displaced. Although several efforts were made, the Haiti continues to need aid to rebuild the country and its people.
The LiLa Foundation for Health and Education believes in organized and effective use of resources; therefore, we have modeled our objectives after the U.S. International Development Haiti Stabilization Strategy. We agree that emphasis on Providing Healthcare, Access to Primary Level Education, and creating a Social Safety Net/Food Aid will combat Haiti’s poverty. Our Flagship Programs the LiLa Ecole (School) and Foire de Sante (Health Fair) are congruent with the stabilization strategy of USA ID. As a result of the dedication of our educators, we have earned accreditation for our schools. This quality standard must continue, and we will continue to engage and retain dedicated supporters who have made these goals possible. According to our health initiatives, we have sought to establish a permanent clinic that addresses the health needs of the community in order to improve the quality of life in rural Haitian communities.