All of us are in the process of adjusting to the idea that the next several weeks will be a time when many of the activities we take for granted in our lives will be different. One of the most important things for us to do during this difficult period is communicate as much as possible, both to avoid misinformation and to sustain our sense of community.
The temporary cancellation of weekend Mass at the Cathedral of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus of course means that the Haiti Outreach Committee will need to forego the planned Student Sponsorship campaign previously scheduled for March 21-29. For some fifteen years the annual fundraising effort--coordinated with St. Kateri parish in Tabb, Virginia--has provided resources used to fund teacher salaries, tuition and uniforms for the primary and secondary schools we operate in Boucan Carre, Haiti. Your donations also provide a meal for students at the primary school. The results of the sponsorship have been amazing. Today more than 1,100 students in one of Haiti’s poorest regions attend two of the country’s nicest facilities.
In years past sponsors selected a photo of a student they wished to sponsor. They then gave checks or credit cards to volunteers at tables outside the church. Circumstances make it necessary for us to be more creative this year. Whether you have sponsored a child in the past, or if this is your first time, the donation process is simple. Sponsorships are $150 for primary students and $250 for secondary students, although you may give any amount, larger or smaller. There are three easy ways to sponsor one or more students:
Sponsor Online: Go to our website at www.haitioutreachprogram.com Click "Donate" in upper right corner. Choose either "recurring donation" or "one-time donation" and follow the prompts. (If you experience any difficulties, we also created an instructional video for using WeShare to donate online which can be found here: https://www.haitioutreachprogram.com/#donations)
Sponsor by Phone: Call Sonya Mire at 865-582-1520. She will be glad to help if you want to donate with a credit card over the phone, get more information about the education program, or request additional pictures. Her email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sponsor by Check: Checks are payable to Haiti Outreach Sponsorship. Mail the check to Haiti Outreach Program, Cathedral of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, 417 Erin Dr., Suite 120, Knoxville, TN, 37919.
Regardless of how you donate or how much you donate, we will send you a group photo of Haitian students who will benefit from your donation. If you don't receive a photo after donating, please contact us so we can verify your mailing address and send one promptly. If possible, we also will make the photos available to everyone once Mass at the Cathedral resumes.
We are enormously grateful for the support you have shown in the past for our mission in Haiti. We are committed to working through these challenges as best we can to sustain that support. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or suggestions.