Haiti Tutoring Program Results & Upcoming Summer Camp
This past January, we partnered with Rose and David Jean in Les Cayes, Haiti to roll out a tutoring program [read more about the program here] at their primary school and the Haiti DreamRoot Resource Center.
This new tutoring program has improved the grades of 200+ students and instructional skills of teachers by utilizing the knowledge and skills from tutors in their own community. By working side-by-side with these tutors, the teachers were able to pick up new skills and other instructional tips and incorporate them into their classrooms. Additional teachers' training workshops were also held throughout the year to help the instructors with curriculum planning and classroom management. These initiatives not only improved how the teachers instructed the children, but also improved how the children learned, helping them advance and be prepared for the next grade level. Students that entered the program with a 4/10 average grade score, ended it with an average of 8.5/10. That is a HUGE accomplishment and growth and has shown us how successful this program can be.
On June 17th, these 200+ students and teachers finished the year with strong confidence in their profession and the lessons they learned this year and we just want to say congrats to everyone for such a great year!
We are also proud to announce that next year, the school now has the capability and will offer seventh grade lessons for these students. The first time this school has been able to offer lessons beyond sixth grade. We are thrilled to be able to support the community in Les Cayes through education and we look forward to seeing how these tutoring programs will continue to help the teachers and students grow.
One of the students graduating from sixth grade this year is a 11-year-old, *Daphney. She has lived with her mother in Les Cayes all her life and has attended Rose and David’s school since she was 3 years old. This year, Daphney took an entrance exam for a school that has a high reputation in the region and only accepts the top students of each class.
Confident of the schooling she received at her small school in Les Cayes, she took the entrance exam and placed first - something not easily obtained for small schools. It is a great testament to the quality of leadership that DreamRoot leaders Rose and David provide, and the care attention the local leaders have towards their students and community. The quality of their work, the time and effort they put into with local partners and their vision for these students and this school will transform lives for generations to come.
The student will be missed at the school, but we congratulate her and wish her the best!
Working with dedication and excellence. Uncompromising in the vision, remembering their why, building a team, and having the perseverance and character to show up each day to walk it out. The fruits speak for themselves.
This is what it looks like to equip and empower underprivileged students so they can take the baton further and rise the tide for all.
It is an honor and privilege to partner with local leaders like you, Rose and David.
*name has been changed for anonymity.
Need for Summer Programming
In the previous blog article, we shared that DreamRoot local leaders Rose and David are currently dealing with one of the most difficult seasons they’ve encountered in Haiti. The situation in the community near Les Cayes continues to be a daily challenge. The gangs have taken over the capital city, Port-au-Prince, access to food and supplies have been limited. The merchants who are taking the risk to travel the distance from Port-au-Print to Les Cayes do so at a great personal risk and are often forced to pay off the gangs to pass through. Due to the extra costs, food and other materials that do make it through are often more expensive for regular citizens who are already having difficulty surviving the day-to-day.
Many families often travel to Port-au-Prince to visit family during summer break. However, due to the situation of the country being overrun by gangs, and high gas and food prices, travel has come unsafe and too expensive for most families, giving them no choice but to stay home for the summer.
Two-Month Summer Camp
These is no summer educational programs for the kids in this community. To ensure the students maintain their momentum and have productive activities this summer, we are hosting a two-month long (54 days) summer camp for 123 students grades 1 through 7. This program will allow the school to meet four days a week from 9am-2pm.
This summer camp provides the kids an activity away from home, helping them to stay off the streets or at home alone where they often don’t have enough food or a proper support system. The school will include activities, lessons, and proper food so they can continue to grow physically and mentally.
This educational but fun outlet for them will help them have a great and formative summer where they will build upon skills and lessons, setting them up for success and help them stay connected with community, getting a nutritious meal, and having someone look over them.
Camp activities will include creative writing, singing, dancing (learning choreography), art (drawing, coloring, and painting), skits (writing and performing them), as well as writing and reading poetry (similar to the recent Teachers Appreciation Day we hosted – to learn more, check out our recent social media post, it is definitely worth the watch). We will also concentrate more on learning to read and speak English and touching up on some of the lessons they will be learning in the class they will be in next school year in order to prepare them in some small way.
A note about the creative arts outlet like creative writing, art, dancing, poetry – these are all powerful tools to use in trauma healing, processing emotions and thoughts the kids may be dealing with due to growing up in such a tough location with often less than ideal home lives. These are all tools they often have access to. Participating in these fun and developmental activities within a safe and supportive group setting, will provide healing, give them a support system of role models and help them make lifelong friends.
The kids will be grouped based on grade and will rotate each activity for a period of 30 minutes per activity each day.
At the end of summer camp, each group (or capstone) will include a presentation for the parents, and any community member who wants to attend, where the kids will showcase what they learned and display their artwork. The program will last all summer, ending right before the next school year.
Since this is programming that families would not have financial access to and is something the vast majority of the kids would never experience otherwise, DreamRoot will cover the cost of the camp.
Funds will go towards paying the teachers, purchasing supplies for activities and to cover one meal a day before they go home, because for many of these kids, the parents are out working for the majority of the day and the kids sometimes are just at home waiting for someone to come home to feed them.
The total to run the camp is around $3,700. This amount includes supplies (crayons, paint, white paper, notebooks, and pencils), meals for the students, and salaries for the teachers, camp leaders and cooks that will help to provide food for staff and the kids for the duration of the camp.
Measure of Sustainable Impact of Programming
At DreamRoot, we believe in not just helping community programs thrive, but to support them in a way that will set them up for long term success with the hopes of ending cycles of poverty.
Education is a key measure of sustainable impact because it transfers the knowledge and skills and shapes attitudes and values that are vital to a thriving future.
One of the reasons we partner with Rose and David in Haiti, is because they see the potential in their community and people, and they show up to be the change. They truly believe in the power of education and the potential of local community members. We agree, which is why we were thrilled to hear that they are receiving resumes to help with the camp from high-school seniors and young adults in the community that had previously attended the school. This time rather than being students, they lead and teach at the camp, giving back to their community and the next generation.
Sponsor a Child to Attend Camp
This is where we need your help. We are currently raising funds for the camp and so we can add more students to the program. Additional students and their families have already expressed interest in registering and we know they are in need of this type of support this summer. The cost of the camp is $30 USD per child. If you feel inclined to give, please click here. Any amount will go a long way in helping these kids have a summer that will set them up for a successful school year (and have lots of fun in the process).
To close, we wanted to share a note from Rose.
“We are just happy to be able to do what we do. In all honesty, you can’t look at a country like Haiti and not have a heart to do something. Haiti has so many challenges and the people are in such despair. They really don’t see a future. So anywhere you can bring hope and shed light will help, not only to lift spirits, but also to end cycles that have gone on for generations. David and I really take that to heart and take it seriously. It is time consuming and exhausting, and yes, we are tired at the end of each day, but it is all worth it because these kids are going to be the difference. We know that it is essential to invest in them now, so we do not have to have fear about their future. In this region, there are only two roads you can take. So, we are just going to pour into them as much as we can so they know they are loved and there is someone who is looking out for them and people who are rooting for them wanting them to succeed and putting them on the road toward that – hope.
We really appreciate organizations like DreamRoot who believe in what we do and support us the way you all do. We are so grateful for DreamRoot’s partners. Thank you for believing in us. Thank you for giving us the opportunity to serve our country, serve our community and serve our kids.” – Rose
Executive Director, DreamRoot Leadership Institute
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