Nonprofit Spotlight: Davidson Haiti Foundation

There are many nonprofit organizations in Bradenton and the surrounding area. Each one is doing incredible work by helping those less fortunate, promoting the arts, providing education, and more.

During our nonprofit spotlight series, we’ll highlight some of the lesser-known area nonprofits. This week, we were thrilled to chat with the Bradenton-based Davidson Haiti Foundation to learn more about their mission and how we can help. Here’s what they had to say.

Can you tell us a little bit about your mission?

The Davidson Haiti Foundation runs a school located in a remote, mountainous area of Haiti where there are no other schools available to the children.

We prepare our students for opportunities for tomorrow by providing them with a 21st-century set of skills – including critical thinking, problem-solving, collaboration, communication, and creativity to ensure a successful future.

The purpose of our organization is to educate students to their highest learning potential by providing a quality, differentiated, yet equitable learning environment. Students will be prepared socially for the future through opportunities to exemplify personality and serve the surrounding community.

Who do you serve and why?

At present, our school serves 460 students from grades Pre-K to 6th grade. Besides academic classes, each 4th- 6th grader must take vocational classes in one of several areas: sewing, tailoring, agriculture, or plumbing. Each child is given a uniform, shoes, books, and a backpack each year.

Seeing the tremendous lack of education and skills in this area of Haiti, the school was begun in 2011 with 30 students. It has grown each year to a present enrollment of 460. All children who apply are enrolled, regardless of age. There are several students 16-18 years of age in the third grade. The skills they learn in the vocational training will provide an income in the future. For example: since the first graduation from the sewing class, two of the people have begun a business. This past year, we hired them to make the uniforms for the students.

Can you describe a few of your key programs?

In addition to the academic classes and vocational training, we also provide first aid classes and reading classes for adults in the community.

What’s the best way our community can help?

The school is housed in a steel building 100 x 60 x 22 feet. There is no electricity and no running water. Due to the location of the school, there are no opportunities for volunteers. However, you can support our mission by making a donation to help pay for everyday operations, including salaries for faculty and staff, uniforms, shoes, textbooks, and food, as well as school supplies such as notebooks, pencils, rulers in centimeters, colored pencils, construction paper, glue, and scissors. On a larger scale, we’re hoping to install as well for water and a reclamation system, as well as solar panels for electricity.

To learn more about Davidson Haiti Foundation, visit their website and follow them on Facebook!

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