Impact: House of Hope
Alice Barthole founded the House of Hope (HOH) after she witnessed homeless orphans wandering through a field, eating rocks to fill their hungry stomachs. Alice, a Haitian-born woman living in the United States, was so stirred by the plight of these children that she moved back to Haiti and let it be known that she would take in children who had nowhere else to go. Twenty years later, the House of Hope is now home to nearly 200 abandoned, homeless or orphaned children who benefit from the warmth of a loving family atmosphere.
Just three miles from the earthquake epicentre, the House of Hope children were terrified as they watched their community fall to rubble. Amazingly, when the dust settled, the orphanage was one of the few buildings left standing. All 200 children, staff and volunteers survived with only minor injuries. House of Hope Director Alice Barthole reported, “the village was flattened. Many people were dead and injured in the streets”. There was damage to the building, but Alice considers herself lucky compared to many of her neighbours who lost everything.
Thanks to generous Canadians who supported the orphanage last year, Alice was prepared with a generator, as well as a supply of gas, food and water – enough to get them through the difficult days that followed. The garden is now full of beds, as one wing of the orphanage sags ominously. For now, the children are sleeping in the open air until they know the building is safe.
We know there will be thousands of new orphans requiring food, shelter and medical care in the months to come. The House of Hope, and other Haitian partners, are going to need our help, now more than ever.
Thanks to the immediate action of generous supporters (including those who contributed to the Pierre Jerome Fund) as soon as the banks were operating, Canadian Feed The Children was able to wire $146,000 to three partners in Haiti (House of Hope, OMES and Grace Children's Hospital). The funds were used to purchase what was most critically needed: water, food and medical supplies.
Future contributions will continue to provide basic needs as well as longer-term rehabilitation to strengthen the country.
With your support the children of House of Hope will benefit from:
Nutrition: The costs of food, clean water and cooking fuel have risen dramatically in Port-au-Prince. Your support ensures the children received nutritious meals every day.
Repairs, Construction & Furnishings: Your gift will help provide much-needed renovations for the House of Hope, ensuring a safe and comfortable home for nearly 200 orphaned and abandoned children.
Education: House of Hope runs a primary school that is open to all of the orphanage’s children, as well as ‘day students’ (neighbouring youth who cannot afford school). Your support will provide teachers’ salaries and transportation, student supplies, school clothes, blackboards and classroom furniture.
Health Care: Access to good health care is especially important after the earthquake. The emerging concern now in Haiti is the outbreak of serious diseases such as malaria, intestinal parasites, dengue fever, typhoid and cholera – all of which can weaken or kill the most vulnerable, including children, in a very short time.
Hygiene & Sanitation: One of the best preventative health care measures is to ensure a clean living environment. These funds will provide a clean home with access to soap, water, cleaning supplies, sanitary products and toiletries.
Institutional Capacity Building & Program Implementation: Support for a House of Hope office assistant, project manager, and monitoring mechanisms will ensure accountability, transparency and the most efficient use of funds.