THE 2010 EARTHQUAKE
In the middle of TeacHaiti’s third school year, tragedy struck the country of Haiti. It came in the form of a 7.0 magnitude earthquake, which, on the afternoon of January 12, claimed over 250,000 lives in a matter of seconds.
When all was said and done, over 300,000 people had died, while another 300,000 had been injured. At least a million were now homeless. Thousands of schools had been lost. The damage and destruction were felt throughout every part and in every aspect of the country.
In the midst of tragedy, however, there is always hope to be found. This was true of TeacHaiti’s beginnings, and it would be true of TeacHaiti’s response to the disaster.
Though many schools had been destroyed and most of TeacHaiti’s students were now homeless, the Board of Directors soon learned that, amazingly, not a single one had died. When Miquette returned to the U.S. during the following summer, she told the stories of her country’s response to the earthquake. As she did, an idea was soon formed, an idea for how hope could once again emerge from amidst tragedy.
A NEW SCHOOL
The idea was for a new school, a school that would be run by TeacHaiti. With only a few months ‘til the start of the 2010-2011 school year, the Board launched a capital campaign immediately.
By the end of the summer, they had sufficient funds to proceed. The new school opened in October 2010, with 65 students in grades 1-4. Naturally, they called it the School of Hope.
In addition to these 65 students, another 126 students received TeacHaiti sponsorships to attend other schools. The following year, the school expanded to K-5, with 100 enrolled students. In total, TeacHaiti was now sponsoring over 200 students.
Now in 2017 TeacHaiti educates more than 440 students across Haiti! More than 200 of these students attend our School of Hope in Port-au-Prince, 34 attend our School of Hope in St. Michel and the rest attend our partner schools across Haiti.
Our new school in St. Michel opened in fall of 2016 with a pre-school class. We hope to build on this by adding a class each year as we continue to complete the phases of construction.