With the recent assassination of its president, a devastating earthquake this summer, a heartbreaking migrant crisis in the United States and the most recent kidnapping of 17 missionaries; Haiti has been charging in crisis mode. We sat down with KORE Foundation, a faith-based organization which provides immediate relief to the locals by the locals in Haiti. Here are simple ways you can help empower Haitian communities when we’re advised not to visit this country challenged by extreme poverty, economic instability, and political uproar.
I remember in high school, in order to be accepted to an elite university, there were several things on the checklist. One of them was to volunteer or conduct community service, so I played piano at retirement homes…to check my list. That might have been the intent, but the seed of doing good had been planted. My teenage self was inadvertently inspired. Especially when we repeatedly returned to the same handful of retirement homes in Silicon Valley, I grew close to the same senior residents. I knew their names, their family members. Some always dozed off during the second half of the recitals, some couldn’t have sugar when we gathered around the potluck table at the end of the afternoons. By the time I became a piano teacher in college, I also organized piano recitals at retirement homes. Not to check off a list, but because I wanted to give back. The intent was different, but it has carried me throughout my entire life so far.
Today, the act of giving extends beyond intention. Regardless of whether I’m giving away cans of food at a shelter in Paris or pushing gurneys in a hospital in Taipei; for me, it has all been rooted in educating myself about the world through the people involved in various organizations and the less fortunate that these organizations come to aid. Thus, #GivingTuesday is here. As I declared in last month’s Founder’s Note, it’s a series that I’m transporting from my personal Instagram stories to Jetset Times, a place where I can feature non-profits or organizations that are planting seeds of goodness around the globe.
At the end of August, after the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse in Haiti and a devastating earthquake that killed 2,200+ people, I was on the hunt for a charity which focused on relief in a country suffering greatly, time after time. When I stumbled upon KORE, I knew that I had found what I was looking for. The Tennessee-based organization mobilizes local communities through sustainable farming so Haitians can run their own businesses and feed themselves. Jessi Harris, Creative Communications Director at Kore Foundation, and I immediately connected via social media and we spent hours chatting about a wide range of subjects, from our pasts to the state of Haiti. For the entirety of our conversation and her informative insight, please watch the video above.
As Jessi explained, travelers are not advised to visit Haiti at the moment due to its current turbulent state,
“Haiti is below Florida, connected to the Dominican Republic. It has been, for a long time, the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere with people making less than USD $1/day. Even before COVID, there were protests happening with lots of kidnappings and extreme poverty. Imagine in a small country where sanitation is not even hardly an option, people can hardly get their hands on soap, let alone a mask. When the protests happened, there was a massive job shortage,” she said.
Since the filming of our interview, 13,000+Haitian migrants camped under a bridge in Texas, in addition to 17 missionaries who have been held hostage for ransom by a violent group of Haitian gang. It’s evident that Haiti has been in dire need of help for a very long time, but what can we do when we can’t travel there? KORE, which also happens to be faith-based, makes it very simple for us to aid in an instant:
1. Feed a child.
With its Hatch Hope campaign, we can add more protein to a child’s diet by purchasing an egg from a Haitian KORE farmer. It helps the children learn better in school, as well as encouraging local farmers to raise more chickens to hatch more eggs. For $0.15, it helps 1 child with 1 egg in 1 day:
- For a monthly donation, that’s $4.50/month.
- For a six-month donation, that’s $27.37/6 months.
- For a yearly donation, that’s $54.75/year.
2. Donate a tarp.
Specifically for earthquake victims, KORE’s relief process has gone beyond the central theme of sustainability. The non-profit is buying tarps locally in Haiti to distribute to victims, each tarp costs $29.
KORE asks all of us to share their relief efforts and stories. Knowledge reinforces care, spread the word so more good can be done. So get those social media buttons going, let’s get more proteins in these little bodies.
To donate, visit KORE’s website here. Just remember, even $5 per month can help feed a child with one egg a day. I hope this kick-off of the #GivingTuesday series doesn’t bore but inspire you, to see that such little money can go a long way, for the people in a country that’s been through the most gruesome disasters.
For more on the history of Haiti, please read this article “Haiti’s Turbulent History Of Political Instability, Turmoil & Violence” written by Lily Adami.