In August 2017, we opened our House of Hope for 12 princesses and, at the time, it looked like an orphanage. Something that we've come to understand elicits a negative connotation, one of abandonment and uncertainty. Through our House of Hope we have provided the young ladies with love, support, stability, structure, education, and daily needs. We have learned a lot since August 2017.
So that's where we were, functioning as an "orphanage". That's not where we are today. Today, we've learned a lot about providing the basic fundamentals for the young princesses and changing what their past once looked like - into a future of possibilities. We have also learned that education is the key, and educational support is the main aspect that makes quite a difference. The princesses are enrolled in a Catholic school. They are flourishing and a lot of that has to do with our change in mindset and the providing of necessary educational support. We are not running an "orphanage", we are running a boarding school for vulnerable princesses and reducing the number of princesses growing up as children slaves.
Where we want to go! We are dedicated to helping those less fortunate and especially those with a disability to ensure they receive first the necessary care but also the education they deserve despite their disability or circumstances. While registering Clary one of our princesses, in school we were informed she would not be accepted due to her disability. The answer was clear to us. We had to start a kindergarten for children with disabilities. Clary will be our first student but certainly not our last. We have to allow children with disabilities to receive the basic education they need to succeed.
In alignment with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals this program falls into Goal 1 "No Poverty", Goal 2 "Zero Hunger", Goal 3 "Good Health and Well Being" and Goal 4 "Quality Education". The United Nations (www.sustainabledevelopment.un.org) has developed an agenda and created a plan of action to change the world, and meet goals, by 2030. This plan includes 17 sustainable development goals and Pennies for Haiti has developed some of these goals in order to change lives for women, children, and families in Haiti.