Why a new secondary school is needed

Why a new secondary school is needed


6 News Reporter

BOUCAN CARRE, Haiti (WATE) - One of the main missions for the trip to Haiti was to help develop plans to build a new secondary school.

The Haiti Outreach Program received a $350,000 donation from a Knoxville-based company called Xinergy to make this happen.

Right now, the older students don't have a building where they can meet.

"They meet in this little gazebo behind me," says program member Billy Stair. "The girls meet in a broken down building behind you. It's very important to get them a basic safe building."

Haiti: Road to Recovery

Get more information on the mission, plus a slideshow and journal

Class begins for students at the Catholic secondary school in Boucan Carre at 8:00 sharp.

On the second day of our trip, Ben Johnston, chairman of the Haiti Outreach Program, greeted the students and told them, "We are working hard and praying hard for your education."

Education is very important to the people of Haiti. "This is the best way that somebody can be something in Haiti," one of the students said. "School is the best thing."

Many of the students walk two hours to get to school. Classes end at noon so students can get home before it gets dark.

The students are very grateful they're going to get a new school.

"I like the people of the United States," said one of the students, Justin Lomelus. "They make a lot of stuff for us. They will build a school. I like it."

"More than half the people in Haiti cannot read or write," Billy Stair said. "One of the fundamentals if you're trying to raise your standard of living and give them opportunity is to simply educate them at a level where they can build a house, measure the measurements for the foundation. Just those basic skills are critically important to Haiti."

Building structures in rural parts of Haiti is very challenging, so the time table of building the school is still uncertain. However, the outreach program hopes to start construction within the year.

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