|Robenson and Valencia|
|Robeson Playing Dominoes|
A second program that I visited was a school started by a high school teacher at SOPUDEP after the earthquake. The school is located in a half-built house that is no bigger than 400 square feet. In this small space there are over 60 children ranging in age from 3-16 and 9 teachers. Almost none of the children had been to school previously. It is unfortunate that such a school must exist in a Haiti, but it is all too common as Haiti has a dysfunctional system of elementary public schools. I truly don’t understand why the international community is not pushing for universal primary education in Haiti. Education is the key to escaping poverty, yet the international community is focused on job creation and other temporary solutions. It breaks my heart to see another generation of Haiti’s children being provided a substandard education, if they are being provided an education at all.
|13 Year Old Valencia|
It is this dilemma that makes what we do at H.E.R.O. so important. Robenson has been enrolled in a morning school program and is provided academic tutoring every afternoon for 2-4 hours. Valencia is provided one-on-one academic instruction daily in the morning and afternoon to prepare her for reentry into school next August. We are fully investing in the academic potential of our children, because we know that without a doubt, education is the key to their future success.