Empowering future leaders in Haiti
Haiti is only 4hrs flight from NYC, yet it is worlds away. I first went to Haiti in early 2015, after having gotten involved with the Port-au-Prince based English in Mind (EIM) institute in 2014.
I immediately fell in love with this, often-misrepresented, nation’s people, their spirit and their culture of tenacity and graciousness, proudly displayed in the face of — to many outsiders — unimaginable hardship.
Originally started by an NGO (International Disaster Volunteers) in the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake that left Haiti in ruins, the EIM Institute is now a Haitian led, Haitian taught, and Haitian administered school and community. The school offers classes 5 days a week to over 200 students from all over Port-au-Prince, following a Cambridge University English syllabus complete with internationally recognized exams. The goal is simple: empowering Haitian students to create the changes they desire. It starts with education. An English speaking Haitian has 20 times the earning potential of somebody speaking only Haitian Creole, who will take home an average daily salary of $4 - if work can be found.
Over the years, EIM has grown from its humble beginnings to be not just a school, but a true community focused on nurturing next-generation Haitian leaders from the inside-out. A dedicated collaboration between teachers, students and international volunteers now facilitates not just English education, but leadership training, job-placement, cultural exchange and initiatives into building Haiti’s potential as a true adventure tourism destination unlike anywhere else in the world.
The EIM program is always looking for new faces and minds for volunteering trips to Port-au-Prince and its surroundings. A life-changing experience, I promise you. In addition, donations and sponsorships are equally needed and appreciated. Don’t hesitate to visit the EIM website listed above for more information on how to be a part of impactful, inspiring, positive change.
photography: emily winiker; bess adler
design: jaime kleiman