Members of charitable organizations joined together at the Italian Center in Stamford to raise money for eduction and residence for youth in Haiti.
The "Make it Count" fundraising event is an effort organized by Haitians Building Unity to benefit the Haitian Education and Residence (HEAR) Transition Home program, which provide assistance for youth who have aged out of orphanages with the opportunity to transition into the workforce.
"Our goal is to give them an education that actually allows them to be employable. It can be a trade-skill, carpentry, electrical plumbing, heavy machine operating. It can be a computer skill, different skill-sets that actually lead directly to employment. And basically, the turn-around is two or three years, they'd be out in the workforce and they would basically be able to give back to the project themselves."
Haitians Building Unity is a group started by three women in response to the catastrophic earthquake that shook Haiti in 2010. The group also works in collaboration with Hope Haiti and Food for the Poor. It expects to raise about $10,000 from the event.
"We need to focus on helping with building with infrastructure, education whatever it takes," said HBU co-founder Manouchecka Samedy. "That's why we're building unity. We want to collaborate with people who are already out there doing the work and we want to help bring awareness to other people who don't know what they're doing so we can help strengthen their actions."
Members tell us since the group is still in its infancy, collaborative efforts are essential in not only improving the lives of individuals, but the overall economy of the Haitian nation.
"We want to be active in our community, we want to collaborate with organizations," said HBU co-founder Joanne Delone. "We don't just want to work individually. We feel that working together will have a greater impact."
"I just see people coming to us to figure out, where do I go if I need this done coming to our office," said HBU member Vania Saintfery. "Or our building to just get more information on different resources that are out there."
For more information visit haitiansupport.org.