Building Bridges Haiti

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The Farmer Family
There is an opportunity for all of us at St. Thomas to make a difference to a group of young girls in Haiti who are dealing with the aftermath of the most recent natural disasters, a hurricane and a tornado. Didi Bertrand-Farmer, a member of our congregation, has a summer project that will empower these young people to overcome these disasters and move on to help themselves and their country.
Support of this project is being championed by our vestry and members of our congregation who are interested in outreach and who believe that it is important to reach out beyond our American borders to help others. This is the one international project that we are sponsoring this year.
St. Thomas Church Supports Girls in Haiti in a Year of Intense Struggle
After months of the worst civil unrest in Haiti in years – widespread protests against the government, gang violence, tire burnings, road blockages, sexual assault – 35 girls and young women found relief and hope this summer in a 10-day retreat designed for holistic support and education. Sponsored by the Women and Girls Initiative (WGI), these girls from the most poverty-stricken and oppressed areas of Haiti receive tuition to attend school during the year and to participate in the WGI Leadership Academy in the summer.
Under the umbrella of Partners-In-Health, WGI was founded by Didi Bertrand-Farmer, now a member of St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Coral Gables. Drawn by the stories of the remarkable work that WGI accomplishes, parishioners at St. Thomas for the last three years have designated their major fundraiser for outreach to WGI’s work in Haiti. On Shrove Tuesday last spring, the community was invited to a Crepe Dinner with live music, Haitian dancers, WGI’s Mobile Art exhibit, arts and crafts from Haiti for purchase, and opportunities to sponsor scholarships.

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