Two School District 69 educators are going to Haiti this summer to help with the rebuilding of the Caribbean nation.
On Jan. 12 a magnitude 7 earthquake centred just 25 kilometres west of the capital Port au Prince killed about 230,000 people, injured another 300,000 and left a million homeless.
Among those affected were the relatives of Baz and Pauline Danoit.
Pauline Danoit and friend Allyson Pearce are helping to organize a Fundraiser for Haiti on Saturday, June 12 at Parksville Elementary.
Baz, an educational assistant at Kwalikum Secondary School, grew up in Port au Prince and lost several relatives in the disaster.
Some remain buried in the rubble, says wife Pauline, a Jamaican and a substitute teacher in District 69.
Shortly after the disaster, she said, a student at KSS walked up to Baz and gave him $50, the entire contents of her savings account.
They’re hoping that spirit of generosity remains in Oceanside, she said, so they and others are holding a Danoit Fundraiser for Haiti starting at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 12, in the Parksville Elementary gym.
Many area businesses and organizations are supporting the evening, including M&N Furniture, which is donating a bed to be won, Save-On Foods, Looking Good Salon, the Dave Evans Soccer School and District 69. There will be a light, traditional Caribbean meal, a 50/50 draw and a silent auction.
With money raised from the event, Pauline said, she and Baz are hoping to bring items which will help Haitians in their rebuilding efforts.
“Food is the big problem now,” she said.
They’re hoping to bring such items as a solar-powered water pump, seeds and gardening tools. In a letter to area businesses, Baz says he’s also hoping to purchases fruit trees and livestock.
“Each Haitian family that has the opportunity to learn new ways to not only survive but to flourish,” he says, “means that a child does not have to die of starvation.”
The Danoits are leaving for Haiti July 12 and are planning to stay three weeks, though that may be extended.
“We’ll be staying in the countryside outside Port au Prince,” Pauline says. “There’s nowhere to stay in Port au Prince.”
Tickets for the fundraiser are $30, children 12 years and under $15. For tickets, information or to donate, call the Danoits at 250-954-0540 (home) or 250-228-3222 (cell).
On June 12 the Oceanside community came together in support of the Danoit fundraiser for Haiti at the Parksville Elementary School gym. The spirit of generosity certainly remains in Oceanside as over $4,000 was raised. This money will go a long way in helping the survivors of the Jan. 12 earthquake.