The total contributions have been tallied and UFCW activists in Canada and the United States have combined their efforts to raise nearly $500,000 for the Haiti relief effort. In addition to pledges made by UFCW International, the UFCW Canada National Council, and local union leaders, rank-and-file member-activists across North America raised thousands of dollars through a variety of events.
Together, the UFCW made a significant difference in the devastated lives of the Haitian people who were rocked by a massive earthquake early in the new year. Most of the funds raised by UFCW Canada were donated to Médecins Sans Frontières who provided life saving care to numerous Haitians injured by the natural disaster, and UFCW International divided their donations between two equally excellent not-for-profit humanitarian organizations: The Mortel Family Charitable Foundation and Hope for Haiti.
Through the Mortel Family Charitable Foundation, UFCW funds will be dedicated to building a computer lab and library for James Stine College, a high school in St. Marc, Haiti, an area where thousands of Haitians have migrated since the earthquake. The school will provide quality secondary education to poor Haitian children who have completed elementary education in the city and neighboring towns and parishes.
Through Hope for Haiti, the UFCW is also supporting the rebuilding of a computer lab and library at St. Francois de Sales in the neighborhood of Riviere Froide, commune of Carrefour, Port-au-Prince. Before the earthquake, the school provided education to more than 1,350 students in the kindergarten, primary, and secondary levels. Carrefour is near the epicenter of the earthquake, and the school was reduced to rubble. UFCW funds are being matched by Hope for Haiti so that the entire project can be completed.
The need in Haiti is still tremendous, and UFCW Canada members are still encouraged to donate what they can to assist with the country’s rebuilding efforts.