The Haiti EcoVillage School Partnership
Members of three Presbyterian churches* initiated this project for one purpose: to build a self-sustaining school in the EcoVillage. 100% of all donations reach our partners in Haiti to provide for this school. North Decatur Presbyterian Church acts as fiscal partner, providing banking services and tax credit for donations. Expenses for the work are donated specifically for those purposes.
In addition to the three church communities, a number of Haitian-Americans have joined our project, serving on the Steering Committee, providing translation and financial support. We have become a true cross-cultural partnership. We invite others to join our mission.
This website is created and sponsored by the Haiti EcoVillage School Partnership. For specifics, read our Annual Reports by clicking here.
Statement of Principles from the Haiti EcoVillage School Partnership
1. Haitians control the project.
2. Our role is to empower them.
3. We won’t do anything that Haitians can do for themselves.
4. We will not create long-term dependency on us.
5. We will connect with the Haitian people, not just send money.
6. We will build connections in Atlanta while we are building a school in Haiti.
Staff and Parents of the National EcoVillage School
Directeur. Ramain Estil has been principal of the school since its founding. He holds a law degree and has had previous experience as a principal. Directeur Ramain has shepherded the school through its growth and ensured that it meets national educational standards. Ramain’s leadership brought the school national certification in 2018, This certification opens the door to future financial support from the government.
Teachers. In the Haitian educational system, teachers at national schools are hired by the school but paid by the Ministry of Education. All of the teachers in the EcoVillage School are certified by the Ministry and, therefore, qualify to be paid by the Ministry. As the school struggles to find financial self-sufficiency, the support and creativity of the professional staff is vital to finding the resources.
Parents. An Advisory Board of parents organizes parental involvement with the school. Parents volunteer to work in school gardens and provide financial support. Organized support from the parents is vital to ensure the financial future of the school until the Ministry of Education assumes its Constitutional responsibility to fund the school. Parents in all of the EcoVillages collaborate on projects to generate cash for the school, including goat husbandry and cultivation of cassava and moringa.
Mouvman Peyizan Papay, Haiti (MPP)
MPP is a long time partner with both PCUSA and UUSC, helping small Haitian farmers learn to thrive through sustainable practices. After the earthquake, MPP resettled refugees to the EcoVillages on land ceded to MPP by the government. MPP supervises construction and governance of the school, while providing progress reports, financial reports and budgets to partners.
Finding a trustworthy Haitian partner is vital to successful projects that improve lives of Haitians. Through the 50-year leadership of Chavannes Jean Baptist and, now, Executive Director Verona Val, MPP is such a partner. Meet Chavannes in this video explaining the idea of the EcoVillages.
Representatives from the Atlanta Partnership meet with MPP and school leadership each year to collaborate and plan. These regular meetings have led to a strong bond of friendship and trust.