EDUCATING A COMMUNITY
Education is something that Americans often take for granted. It's unlikely that you know someone that didn't have a chance to attend school. In Haiti, only 50% of primary school age children go to school. The majority of people in Thomazeau have to work in their family's trade and don't have the opportunity to ever attend school. This vast lack of education contributes to extreme poverty in the region.
Our Education program is focused on expanding locals knowledge through multi-level English as a Second Language (ESL) and literacy classes offered at the LiveBeyond base. Classes are offered to children in Kè Pou Timoun, Haitian staff, and community members.
We believe that offering an opportunity to learn is a vessel to end the poverty cycle in Thomazeau. With plans to build a primary school and library, we can educate more people in the community. Construction of the school began in June of 2017.
Only two percent of women in the area around the LiveBeyond base can recognize their names in print.
One of our Haitian staff members, Sophie, is a 56-year-old student in our basic literacy and ESL classes. During her first class with us, the instructor had to teach her how to hold a pencil. This is a seemingly mindless task to Americans, but her family was too poor to send her to school as a child, so it's a skill she never learned. She raised seven kids without being to be able to read them a book.
After months of practicing in literacy class, Sophie can finally write her name. Time after time, you can expect to hear her joyfully squeal when she writes it correctly. One of her highest achievements was signing her own name on her baptism certificate. Today, Sophie's knowledge continues to expand as she learns basic English and continues to develop her literacy skills in Creole.
The opportunity to learn gives Sophie dignity, a sense of purpose, and hope for a better future.