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Project Title:

Entrepreneurial Development Project

ETRE AYISYEN FOUNDATION

Contact person Mathias Pierre, President

Date: July 2010

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

I. II.

CONTEXTANDJUSTIFICATION..................................................................................................3 DESCRIPTIONOFTHEPROJECT...........................................................................................4

2.1PROJECTOBJECTIVES..........................................................................................................................4 2.2PROJECTRESULTSANDIMPACT .........................................................................................................4 . 2.3PROJECTINPUT...................................................................................................................................5 2.4METHODOLOGY..................................................................................................................................5 2.5SCHEDULEOFTHEMAINACTIVITIES..................................................................................................8 III. IV. V. KEYSUCCESSFACTORS ...........................................................................................................10 . LOGICALFRAMEWORK...........................................................................................................11 APPENDICES...........................................................................................................................13

APPENDIX1:BUDGET..............................................................................................................................13 APPENDIX2:STRATEGIC PLAN OF THE FOUNDATION ETRE AYISYEN...............................15 APPENDIX3:ARTICLES............................................................................................................................19 A. Summary of the book...............................................................................................................19 B. Profile of the author.................................................................................................................20

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I.

CONTEXTANDJUSTIFICATION

The Haitian government, civil society and international institutions all recognize the important role that the private sector can play in Haiti's economic recovery. However, investing in Haiti is so risky that only the most tenacious and staunch dare take the plunge. Without structures to protect and secure investments, an entrepreneur must prepare himself to make his skills profitable alone. In the business sector, many pitfalls were pointed out as obstacles to the development of a business culture during the sixth annual open house on local development held in July 2009 by the Program for Local Development in Haiti (PDLH, financed by the Canadian cooperation office). The lack of infrastructure, property rights and the absence of land registry, inadequate financial support mechanisms and access to credit, particularly in rural areas, were issues raised in the workshops, along with certain opportunities like the existence of community micro finance institutions and the availability of unexploited resources. The 2004 entrepreneurial meeting of the Francophonie brought to light the fact that, in the field of education, schools hardly contribute at all to the development of an entrepreneurial culture and are more oriented towards training workers, not entrepreneurs. The media covers very few stories or reports about entrepreneurs, their achievements and their successes. According to the EMMUS IV report, more than half of the Haitian population is less than 21 years old and more than 30% is between the ages of 15 and 25. Youth and adolescents represent both a significant force for the country's development and a vulnerable group faced with the poor functioning of Haiti's social and economic sector. Haitian youth mostly find themselves unable to achieve their aspirations and to fulfill their fundamental rights such as the right to education, the right to a healthy life, the right to be informed and freedom of expression. Despite all of this, Haiti must now deal with the loss of many human lives and equipment during the 7.3 magnitude earthquake on January 12th, 2010. Many educational institutions were destroyed, especially universities and professional centers, leaving youth, still in shock from the tragedy, with complete uncertainty about the future. More than ever, the country must be rebuilt, new jobs created and socialeconomic development undertaken once again. It is good to emphasize a specific experience in this particular environment hardly favorable to innovation from youth and lacking in start-up financing. In 1999, a young man named Mathias Pierre started from the idea that a client-oriented service would fill a very tangible need in the ICT sector. In 2003, in order to have the best young engineers without being the market leader, he initiated an employee stock ownership program for GaMas employees which became a limited company. Since 2009, Mathias Pierre has been a role model in Haiti after GaMa took third in OTF Group's Pioneers of Prosperity Awards Program financed by the IDB and the S.E.VEN Fund. In 2008, the company was a victim of food riots. Mathias Pierre therefore decided to invest in a partnership with Haitis youth. He wanted to bring about a paradigm shift in the mindset of Haitian youth, in order to have them build a new vision of Haiti through entrepreneurship: university students that created more jobs than the number of people asking for work. He then published his book called THE POWER OF A DREAM (LE POUVOIR DU RVE) and began a series of conferences about the need to think differently for a different HAITI whose origins and challenges (social, economic, cultural), instead of being an obstruction or challenge to development, are instead the catalyst for solutions and approaches that are uniquely Haitian and respond to the particularities of our society and economy. The response from young people was such that, in order to meet their expectations, he decided to create an Enterprise Incubator Foundation and a model of success.

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Within this context, the ETRE Ayisyen Foundation, which is created in 2009, took the initiative to launch an entrepreneurship competition in order to promote entrepreneurial culture among young people throughout Haiti and allow the country to take advantage of the current momentum to create wealth for its own economic development.

II. DESCRIPTIONOFTHEPROJECT
The ETRE Ayisyen Foundation plans to launch a competition for entrepreneurial excellence with the goal of enrolling 2000 young people from ages 18 to 34. These 2000 people will receive basic training in entrepreneurship over a period of 4 weeks. From the original group, 200 of them will be selected for a year-long training program in entrepreneurship as scholarship students of the foundation. The program will end with the issuance of a certificate recognized by the Minister of National Education and Professional Training (MENFP) through the Institute of Professional Training (INFP). From these 200 graduates, the 50 best of their class will be supervised over a period of 6 months as they search for funds and set up their business. With this contest, the foundation will launch its big project of an Institute focused on entrepreneurship training while the foundation itself will have a section that will provide grants, financing for start-ups and business development. The idea behind this project came from how passionate young Haitians were to get a hold of the book "The Power of a Dream" by author Mathias Pierre, founder of ETRE Ayisyen. This passion was first observed by the founder himself while promoting his book which is a life testimonial of his own experience as an entrepreneur. (See articles in the appendix.)

2.1PROJECTOBJECTIVES

The objective of the project is to encourage the emergence of a new class of entrepreneurs from the Haitian population who come from different backgrounds and have not been exposed to entrepreneurship through family tradition or otherwise. The specific objectives are as follows: Increase youth awareness of the importance of entrepreneurship in a social-economically developing country like Haiti; Ensure entrepreneurial training for youth by setting up a practical entrepreneurship training institute; Create an institute of entrepreneurship; Create an Entrepreneurial Opportunity Fund Create 200 to 300 successful entrepreneurs within 3 years.

2.2PROJECTRESULTSANDIMPACT
2000 young people enrolled in the competition for excellence and immersed in entrepreneurial notions; 200 young people selected and trained in entrepreneurship for a year, thus forming a new class of entrepreneurs in Haiti; At least 50 new businesses set up within two years; 4

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At least 200 new jobs created within two years; A training institute set up for practical entrepreneurship; Existence of the Entrepreneurial Opportunity Fund at the ETRE Ayisyen foundation starting at $500.000; Increased public awareness of the importance of entrepreneurship; Emergence of new businesses throughout the country.

2.3PROJECTINPUT

The project input listed below, which should lead to the output, is going to mobilize certain human resources such as the following: Input Put into place a structure where the 2000 candidates can enroll Set up a committee to select 200 candidates Promote and popularize the competition Develop a curriculum for the training Organize a place to hold the courses Put together a body of professors Organize TV and radio sessions to broadcast the program activities Take steps to ensure accreditation of the diplomas Plan the logistics of the graduation ceremony Search for technical and monetary support (in kind or cash) to collaborate with the 50 finalists to start up their respective business Set up a finance section for business development Human Resources Coordinator Coordinator Head of Communications with the Media Head of Training Head of Logistics Head of Training Head of Communications Head of Training Head of Logistics Coordinator 10 finalists Coordinator

2.4METHODOLOGY

To ensure the accomplishment of the activities and reach the objectives, the project is organized into components: Component 1: Organization of the contest Component 2: Creation of the Institute of Entrepreneurship Component 3: Creation of the Entrepreneurial Opportunity Fund at the foundation In order to obtain the anticipated results, the following main activities will be accomplished: 1. Setting up a project coordination team: There will be a general coordinator for following up with the different components of the project. This team leader should quickly set up a committee in charge of each component. Component 1: 2. Set up the outreach and enrollment process: The person in charge of this component will primarily organized candidates enrollment process and the scrupulous selection of the 200 young people who will take part in thorough training sessions to be put together.
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3. Enrolling candidates: a. Enrollment will be open to the first 2000 registrants who meet the set criteria. Upon enrollment, they will be asked to submit a project idea and the way in which they plan to go about it so that the idea will take shape and become a success story. One month of training sessions will be given for these 2000 young people with the main objective of providing them with more precise data about the competition and introduce them with the basic notions regarding a project idea selection and its chances for success / implementation. During the one-month training, seminars on leadership, basic notions on entrepreneurship and success communication will be given to the 2000 registered candidates. b. An interview with each candidate is scheduled to select the 200 candidates who will participate in the one-year training program. Written evaluation tests will also be organized. 4. Putting together a plan to publicize and promote the project: a. The project will appeal to the different forms of media throughout the country to inform the public about the project and encourage any young person meeting the selection criteria to take part in it. In order to be most effective, the radio community network RAMAK, the entrepreneurial clubs network, and the newspaper Le Dfi (the challenge) will be used to reach young people in remote regions of the country and informational visits will be organized in educational institutions, professional centers and universities. b. All during the project, real live situations that the candidates are facing on their journey with the project team will be aired on TV, either live or pre-recorded. This will let the public focus on the essential goal of the project which is to promote entrepreneurship, thus ensuring entrepreneurial culture. This TV experience will be a kind of "reality TV." It will be a show whose goal is to attract a large number of people to their TV screens on a particular day of the week. 5. Looking for in kind or financial support for the contest winners: Without excluding foreign contributions, the project will appeal to local sponsors in particular in order to have a strong Haitian presence in this component of the project which is meant to be a national one. 6. Putting together a training curriculum: a. The training curriculum will be put together by an expert in education, especially in the field of entrepreneurship. The program will be validated by the MENFP and the degree recognized by the INFP, a part of the MENFP. b. The training program will take place over one year, with courses mainly dealing with personal development, leadership, public speaking skills and financial management. The program will include courses on: i. Computer software knowledge (Microsoft Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Outlook, Internet navigation, Quickbooks, and MS Project) ii. 6 modules on entrepreneurship such as on leadership and management, business planning, marketing, finance iii. Ethics, written and spoken communication and language arts iv. Accounting basics and taxpaying aspect v. Business legal aspects c. The courses will be given by video conference or in a classroom by professors or national and international business professionals. The project will draw on the expertise in entrepreneurship of foreign universities and training centers. 7. Selecting the 50 top finalists: The winners of the Pioneers of Prosperity program that was organized by OTF in 2009 will be invited to take part in the jury to select the 50 finalists and the 10 very best. The jury will help prepare the criteria.

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8. Organizing a graduation ceremony: A graduation ceremony is planned in order to mark the end of the training period and allow family and friends, and the general public, appreciate the effort made by these young people. The ceremony will be aired on radio and TV and significant government and international delegations will be invited to take part. This will ensure the followup of the supervision provided to the 50 top finalists. In fact, this event will allow those involved to understand the importance of the project and the need for them to contribute and make it easy to implement new businesses destined to be set up. 9. Supervising the 50 finalists: a. The finalists of the training program will receive supervision which will allow them to start up their businesses. This activity will facilitate loans to these new entrepreneurs. b. The top 10 finalists will also receive a prize in kind or monetary. A mentoring program will be running with the participation of business owners as mentors and a partnership will be developed with a university oversees for one-month training of the 50 finalists abroad. Component 2: 10. Ensuring a regular program at the institute: This activity includes mainly the establishment of procedures to manage the institute, setting up a regular training curriculum and schedule for the courses to be held each year. Enrollment and training fees will also be determined as courses will not be free to primarily ensure the durability of the institute. However, a scholarship system will be put in place that will look for individuals or organizations, mostly business ones, who will sponsor young students proven to be in a critical economic situation but with potential to become successful entrepreneurs. Component 3: 11. Collecting funds for the Entrepreneurial Opportunity Fund: The foundation hopes to start with US $500,000. 12. Creating policies and procedures for the management of the credit funds: At this stage, it will be determined the criteria to be eligible for a loan at the foundation among all other rules that will be established to ensure an efficient and effective management of this finance department. 13. Partnering with a local bank to facilitate loan transactions process.

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2.5SCHEDULEOFTHEMAINACTIVITIES
Code Head Description Componen ts Work Month 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x X x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x X x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x X X X x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x X x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x X x x X x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x X x x x x x x x x x x x x x

100 101 102 103 104 105 200 201 202 203 204 205 206 207 208 209 210 211 300 301 302 303 304 305 306 307 308 400 401 402

COMMUNICATIONS / MARKETING Draw up a communications/marketing plan Meet with the press (including the RAMAK network) to inform them of the project and get their full support Officially launch the project publically through the media Follow up regularly with the media Carry out marketing plan TRAINING Develop training curriculum Select instructors Select model entrepreneurs Set up a committee to select the 2000 candidates Enroll the 2000 candidates Hold training sessions for the 2000 candidates Evaluate candidates Select 200 candidates Hold courses for the 200 students selected Evaluate students Select 50 finalists LOGISTICS Press conference logistics Logistics of the official project launch Training session logistics Staff, professor and student travel logistics Follow-up with the INFP and the MENFP for accreditation Certificates of participation for the 2000 candidates selected Graduation ceremony for the 200 selected Supervision of the 50 finalists ADMINISTRATION / FINANCE Follow-up on fundraising Develop administrative and financial procedures for all components and

1-3 1-3 1-3 1-3 1-3 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1-3 1-3 1 1 1-2 1 1 1 1-3 1-3

HC HC HC HC HC HT HT HT HT HT HT HT HT HT HT HT HL HL HL HL CO HL HL CO CO AF

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Work activities Monitor the budget Draw up financial reports Draw up narrative reports INSTITUTE OF ENTREPRENEURSHIP Adapt training curriculum already developed for contest Review procedures developed by AF for the institute

C o H e a d

Month

403 1-3 AF 404 1-3 AF 405 1-3 CO 500 501 2 HT 502 2 HT+ 503 MC 504 Plan regular classes (teachers and class schedules) 2 MC 505 Recruit teachers for year 2 project to start regular classes 2 MC 506 Confirm courses location 2 MC 507 Register process for year 2 2 MC 508 Look for scholarships for students 2 MC 600 FINANCE SECTION DEVELOPMENT 601 Review procedures developed by AF for the finance component 3 MC 602 Work jointly with the Coordinator for credit funds collect 3 MC 603 Meet banks to develop partnerships 3 MC 604 Manage the credit funds department 3 MC Coordinator = CO Head of Administration and Finances = AF Head of Communications = HC Head of Logistics = HL Head of Training = HT Weeks = W

x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x X x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x X x x x x x x x x x x x X x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x X x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Months = M C=Component

Managers of Components=M

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III. KEYSUCCESSFACTORS
Some conditions are crucial prerequisites for the project to succeed and reach its objectives. Among these, the project will take the following main difficulties into account in the framework of its success: The search for competent instructors who measure up to the project's expectations The limited time frame (two years) to make the project work Mobilization of adequate resources on time A stable political situation Full cooperation with the INFP and the MENFP Support from the press No demonstrations, strikes or withdrawals by the candidates No withdrawals by the professors Lack of financial means However, measures will be taken concerning some of the controllable conditions of the project: Contacts already initiated with the heads of entrepreneurship programs in universities in Canada and the United States Raising the profile of the competition by not only by using the media but also by giving (30 minute maximum) mini conferences on site at secondary schools, professional centers and universities about the importance of participating Information session and promotion through the media about the importance of the project and the need for the competition Possibility of accreditation as a Plan B by an outside institute in case the INFP and MENFP are unwilling to collaborate Follow-up with the candidates by an experienced professional so that students avoid getting off track Plan for qualified back-up professors

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IV. LOGICALFRAMEWORK
Projectdescription Goal Encouragetheemergenceofanew classofentrepreneursfromthe Haitianpopulationwhocomefrom differentbackgroundsandhavenot beenexposedtoentrepreneurship throughfamilytraditionor otherwise. Objectives CreationoftheInstituteof Entrepreneurship Existenceofaventurecapitalfund withintheFoundationforyoung entrepreneurs(startupsorbusiness development) Studentsattendance Existenceofprocedures manualsandactionplans Bankaccounts Partnershipswithlocal banks Indicators Meansofverification Newenterprises balancesheetsand otherfinancial reports Criticalconditions/hypothesis ImpactGoal Socioeconomic developmentand politicalstability

Newyoung entrepreneurs

Delays Settinguptheinstitute: 2010 Candidatesregistration: 2010 Selectionof200 students:2010 Graduationceremonyfor 200:2011 Choiceof50finalistsand top10:2011 Settinguptheventure capitalfund:2010 Runningregularclasses attheinstitute:2011

Inaugurationofthe Institute Timesheetsof teachersstaffand students Policiesand proceduresmanuals verification,action plans, Accountingbooks Signedagreements withbanks Trainingcurriculum Accountingbooks Timesheets Inauguration attendancesheets Pictures, Newspapers,flyers Website

OutputObjective Socioeconomic developmentand politicalstability

Results/Outputs Registrationof2000 candidates Choiceof200students Existenceofatraining curriculum Graduationceremony Choiceof50finalists Choiceoftop10finalists Newenterprisesrunning Regularclassesheldatthe institute Existenceofacreditfunds departmentlendingmoneyto youngentrepreneurs Existenceofamentoring program Inputs Organizearegistrationstructure for2000candidates Settingupacommitteetoselect the200 Promotionofthecontest Preparingthetraining curriculum Arrangespacefortheclasses Determinetheteachers/trainers OrganizedTVshows ContactwithINFP&Ministryof

Enthusiasmfromthe youthpopulationtoget registeredandattendthe program Trainers/teachersarenot changingtheirmindor delayingtheirschedule forthesessions Nodelayinexecutingthe calendarofactivities

Budget RH:$364,800 Marketing:$155,000 Training:$388,400 AdministrativeFees:$53,200 CreditFunds:$500,000

Sources Authorizedbudget Contractswith different organizationsand staff Stafftraining Studentstraining Minutesofboard meetings Activitiesand financialreports

Primaryconditions Havingasigned agreementwithINFPand MinistryofEducation Projectfundsavailability

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Educationforaccreditation Organizegraduationceremony Collectingactivitiestostartthe venturecapitalfund

Unpredictedfees:$54,105 Total:$2,218,305

Contactswith businessowners andabroad universitiesfor mentoringprogram

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V.

APPENDICES

APPENDIX1:BUDGET
ENTREPRENEURIAL DEVELOPMENT PROJECT
BudgetenUS$ Description HUMAINRESSOURCES Coordinator Headoftraining Headofcommunication Headoflogisitics HeadofAdministrationandFinance Managerofcomponent2 Managerofcomponent3 AdministrativeAssistant Driver/Messenger Subtotal1 COMMUNICATION/MARKETING Projectlaunchceremony Marketing/communicationmaterial Spotradio(conceptandproduction) Spotradio(broadcasting) TVshows Conceptionsiteweb Maintenancesiteweb Subtotal2 AMINISTRATIVEFEES Note brochures,flyers Unit measure month month month month month month month month month forfeit forfeit forfeit forfeit forfeit forfeit month Quantity 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 24 1 1 1 1 1 1 21 Unit price 3000 2000 1500 1500 2000 2000 2000 1000 200 10000 15000 1200 20000 100000 2500 300

Appendix1
Total $72,000.00 $48,000.00 $36,000.00 $36,000.00 $48,000.00 $48,000.00 $48,000.00 $24,000.00 $4,800.00 $364,800.00 $10,000.00 $15,000.00 $1,200.00 $20,000.00 $100,000.00 $2,500.00 $6,300.00 $155,000.00 13

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ENTREPRENEURIAL DEVELOPMENT PROJECT


Rent Officefurniture Transport Documentstranslation Otheradministrativefees Subtotal3 TRAINING Trainingclasses Computers Teachersfees Materialfor2000candidates Materialfor200students Certificates Subtotal4 CREDITFUNDS Startupamountforthecreditportfolio Subtotal5 Total Unpredictedcost Grandtotal Percentageforusingthefoundationofficespace Transportfees,fuel water,callingcards,electricity, Spacerental Rentalof50computers Transport,lodging,perdiem, for4weeks for12months for2000candidates+200students 2.5%oftotalamount month month month forfeit month month month forfeit student student student forfeit 14 12 1 2000 200 2200 1 24 24 24 1 24 800 250 250 10000 $19,200.00 $6,000.00 $6,000.00 $10,000.00

500 $12,000.00 $53,200.00 1000 $14,000.00 5000 $60,000.00 200000 $200,000.00 25 $50,000.00 300 $60,000.00 2 $4,400.00 $388,400.00 500000 $500,000.00 $1,202,800.00 $2,164,200.00 $54,105.00 $2,218,305.00

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APPENDIX2:Why is the Foundation ETRE AYISYEN


Foundation ETRE Ayisyen, ETRE:(Workspace for the Success of Being Haitian)

1. Context 1.1 A country in crisis. During the last 40 years, just a little economic progress has been realized in Haiti because of the compilation of many internal and external factors such as frequent political crisis, bad organization, social disturbances and natural disasters. The relative stability which followed the 2006 presidential election was severely compromised by the external shocks which affected our economy and consequently our social environment. Likewise the violent street demonstrations of April, 2008 emphasized the fragility of the country.

The explosion of the state and religious institutions which a long time served as barricade against the drift, is punctuated by the resignation of the others sectors. This failure reflects the lack of commitment to the society in the economic and social improvement of the living conditions of the majority. At all, that is a collective and manifest defeat.

The Haitian government, the civil society and the international organizations admit the very important support that the private sector might bring in the economic development of Haiti. The report of the Inter American Bank Development for 2007 stipulated Haiti needs a dynamic and efficient private sector that should help to forward to a productive progress and above all that should venture into providing economic activities and create employments.

Even so, to invest in Haiti is too perilous and it is only the most obstinate and most determined that will put money on. Without structure of protection and reassurance of the investments, the entrepreneur has to get ready to make its experiences prosper. The social crisis of April 2008 has particularly affected the private sector which, in an anarchic situation is hardly willing to assure the employments. In a country where the poverty reaches more than 55% of the population, the question of creation of wealth is still nevertheless one of the serious problems to resolve. It is an imperative to promote the creation of employments by interesting to provide the basic rights to the local young population forced to survive without direction, neither models nor resources. 1.2 PROBLEMATIC: A YOUTH WITHOUT PERSPECTIVES

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According to the report EMMUS IV, more than 50% of the Haitian population is of less than 21 years old, and approximately 30% from 15 to 25 years. The young and the teenagers count at the same time for a considerable strength for the development of the country and a defenseless group in front of a paralysis of the social and economic sector. This youth often is unable to reach its goals and to take advantage from its fundamental rights such as the right to education, good living conditions, and either the access to information or freedom expression.

The school dropout average of the Haitian teenagers is very important because the families cant continue to finance their studies during a long period. A part of the student exceeded the normal age of schooling throughout their first attendance. In addition, to incorporate and concentrate these guys reveal more arduous. By the way, the official labor market is halting and numerous young are working in informal sector. The majority of these conditions do not permit them to grow up. Without family support, they risk to be homeless or act as gangsters which are today a flagrant reality here. Also, this situation make them outlaw. And the young girls by their side have no way otherwise to get into prostitution. The early pregnancies and the sexually transmitted infections so to speak are in an alarming level.

The mentalitys problems remain an obstacle to the young opening. In fact, the Haitian mentality does not match the one which marks the developed society and our age. An incredible ditch takes place between pretentions and cultural legacy. And then, the young appear like the first victims.

2. The Foundation ETRE Ayisyen: AN ATTEMPT TO ANSWER

We have to face the despair that influences daily the life of the Haitian youth in order to allow the emergence of a normal and quiet society without constraints such as anarchy, violence which usually are used like fighting tools against unemployment either educational problem. It is extremely desirable to think to the reconstruction of a responsible Haitian identity if we really want a developed country. This development is only possible in an environment where the young people can dream, create and especially believe in their potentialities either their future. It is also the main reason that motivated the group of Haitian entrepreneurs and professionals to form a unit in prospect to promote a change of paradigms for a new society, for a new view of the Haitian youth proud of the various opportunities that exist in the country. Briefly, the goal pointed by the Foundation ETRE Ayisyen. (FONDATION ETRE AYISYEN)

2.1 THE VISION The execution of the Foundation ETRE Ayisyen project needs the unavoidable creation of an institution aiming at the emergence and at the result of being Haitian, in the same way the appropriation of the territory and the creation of wealth in an inclusive society.

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2.2 THE MISSION

The mission of the FONDATION ETRE AYISYEN is to promote a change of paradigms by the education, the discovery and the valorization of the local resources either the training of the young for the business development or the creation of wealth.

2.3 THE INSTITUTIONAL VALUES

According to its own vision, the Foundation, besides the constant promotion of honesty, discipline, respect of the human being and keeping its words, makes a commitment to bank on the values of the Haitian human being, through actions aiming the construction and the intensification of the young Haitian capacities. Also, the board of directors understands the necessity to teach all that can allow the emergence of a new human being (person). In that sense, we target the responsibility and collectivity sense as well as the search of excellence and the love of work.

2.4 THE TARGET GROUP

The change of paradigms proposed by the Foundation will be exclusively detectable if only the young people constitute our center of interest. So the category from 14 to 30 years will be privileged in the interventions of the Foundation. In fact, a special attention will be given to the teenagers and those from 20 to 30 years will be followed in their effort to create businesses that create jobs.

2.5 THE PARTNERS

Our most important partners are: Universities and schools both in Haiti and abroad The associations, the NGOs and the state institutions which work in the educational domain Social and professional associations All the others foundations which run in the same activities sector.

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Globally, a partner will be any institution sharing the same target group as the Foundation and sharing the same values.

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APPENDIX3:ARTICLES
THE POWER OF A DREAM
Purpose AUTHOR

Justification for publishing an English language version. Mathias PIERRE (MP)

A. Summary of the book


InHaiti,heirsofagloriouspast,weremainagroupofpeoplecapableofgreatthingsinthefaceof adversity,motivatedbyasurprisingindividualstrengthtosurviveandprovideforourindividual needs.However,200yearsofhistoryalsoattesttoourinabilitytobuildabetterenvironmentfor ourselves.InhisbookentitledTHEPOWEROFADREAM,MathiasPierreprovesthatanindividuals socialoreconomicoriginsorthecolorofhisskincannotcondemnhim.Educationanddetermination tofulfillhisdreamledMr.Pierreoutofaprecarioussituationandintooneofamodelentrepreneur, theembodimentofsuccess.http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=125064967 ThisbookrecountshisfamilysoriginsandtheirmigratorytrekfromhisnativecitytoPortau Prince,thecapital,toescapetheshameofpaternalfailure.Hisacademiccareerfromelementary schooltohighschoolwasfraughtwithdifficultiesduetomiserableeconomicconditionsandthe challengesofgettinganeducationinHaiti.Hisuniversitystudieswereseenasaculminationofhis ambitions,likethefulfillmentofhisfathersdreamwhichsethimfree.Alas,itwasonlyanillusion thatthoseofthemiddleclassexperienceattheirownexpense.Hestillhadtoclingtoadream,tothe magicofadream,tobelieveinthepowerofeducation,inperseverancethatpaysoffattheendof thejourney,insuccessthatdependsondiscipline.Tenyearsofpersonalstudytodevelophisconcept ofselfawarenessandunderstandtheprinciplesofeconomicgrowthledtosuccesswhenhesetupa modelbusinessGaMa.Aspecialconceptforyoungpeoplewhowanttoseethingsdifferentlyto discover. DidIsaydifferently?ThatshardinHaitiwhereattitudesandparadigmsarenotconduciveto prosperitycreation;survival,destructionofwhateverprosperitysymbolizes,andwheretrustisarare commodity.In2008,MathiasPierrelearnedathisexpensethatitisnotenoughtosucceedinHaitito beaccepted,successmustbeachievedwithothers.GaMawasthetarget,likealotofother businesses,offoodriots.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp dyn/content/article/2009/04/16/AR2009041602024_3.html?sid=ST2009041600189Farfromplayingtherole

ofanexasperatedvictim,theauthorreassessedandquestionedthesocialimplicationofhisbusiness initssurroundings.Inhispartnershipwithyoungpeople,heiscampaigningforthecreationofan equalopportunityenvironmentforeveryonesgrowthinaprosperouscountry

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B. Profile of the author


WhoisMathiasPierre? WhenIlookbackatmypastandatmycurrentinvolvement inmycountrysbusinesssector,Irealizenotonlyisitpossibletochangeonesfuture,butthe futurecanbelearnedandshaped.IcamefromaveryprecariouseconomicsituationandIwas abletoestablishmodeloffinancialperformancebyapplyingcertainprinciplesthatIam revealingtodayinmybook:THEPOWEROFADREAM. http://www.nextbillion.net/blog/2010/05/17/movingfromsurvivalto entrepreneurshipinhaiti.) Currently,IamPresidentandExecutiveDirectorofGaMaConsultingInc.which receivedtherolemodelawardoutof500businessesintheCaribbeanaspartofthe PioneersofProsperityprogram.IamVicePresidentoftheWesternChamberofCommerce andIndustry,assistanttreasurerofAMCHAMandPresidentofAHTIC(HaitianAssociationof InformationTechnologyandCommunication),tonamejustafew.Ibelievethatmymethods canbetransmittedsinceIamworkingtodojustthatwithmorethan500younguniversity studentsthroughtheETREAyisyenFoundation.Myobjective?Iwantthesestudentstoberole models,exampleswhichwillinspirethosewhodecidetobecomeinvolvedinsustainable development.Iwageredthat,intheverynearfuture,Iwouldseethereplicationoftwo hundredfirmslikethekindthatIbuiltthankstoentrepreneurship. AfterJanuary12th,theauthormadeadocumentpublicandbeganaseriesofmeetingsand lecturesondevelopmentinHaiti.WhyHaitiansshouldgetinvolved,especiallysmall businesses,isshownclearlyinseveralspeechestotheHaitianpress,inalectureinMiami (http://haitionward.org/2010/04/29/rebuildinghaitithroughlocalizedbanking/) andagainintestimonybeforetheUSCongress.( http://www.house.gov/apps/list/hearing/financialsvcs_dem/pierre_testimony_4.28.10.pdf

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1.LITTLEQUASIMODOISBORN IwasbornintoamodestCatholicfamilyinCapHaitien,Haiti,onMonday,April3rd,1967,inthewardof HpitalJustinien.Iwasveryfrail,andmyfather,ArnoldPierre,aferventCatholicknowntoreciteLatin hymns,nicknamedmeLittleQuasimodo.Whythatname?Well,itisaHaitiantraditiontonamea newbornaccordingtothecircumstancesofhisbirth,inmemoryofaspecialevent,aftersomeonedear, orsimplyasawaytoshowadeeplove.Forinstance,thenameAsefi(enoughgirls)willbegiventoa babygirliftheparentswerehopingforaboy.Msidieu(thankyou,Lord)isthenamegiventoachild whowaslongdesired.IwasnicknamedQuasimodobecauseoftheparticularMondayonwhichIwas born. IntheCatholictradition,theMondayofmybirth,followingEasterSunday,iscommonlycalled QuasimodoMonday,thusmypetname.Letsnotetheimportanceoftheepithetlittlethatprecedes thispetname.If,inHaiti,theuseofthewordlittleorsmallisoftenatokenofaffection,italso translatestoamentalstatethatshapesourdesires.Wemakeourselvessmallsowedontbecomea nuisance.And,weremainsmallourwholelives.Wedreamsmallandtheresultsreflectionsofour visionarealsosmall. Myfatheralwayssaidthatmyfirstname,Mathias,whichwastakenfromtheBible,camefromthe HebraicnameMattatyahu,nameoftheonewhowastoreplaceJudasafterhebetrayedChrist. Notmuchisknownaboutmyparentsorigins.ItisveryunusualfortheunderprivilegedinHaititokeepa familytree.AmongthethingsIdoknowisthatIwasntmyfathersfirstborn;beforehemarriedmy mother,Fatherhadanotherboy,fiveyearsolderthanme.Andyetathome,IwasalwaystoldIwasthe oldest.ImentionthisbecauseitsimportantforyoutounderstandtheHaitianreality:toooften,Little Quasimodosareliedto,andtheseheapsoflies,thoughttobeharmless,actuallyerodethefamily structure. Therewerefourchildreninourfamily:asisterandthreebrothers,oneofwhomdiedatageone.We wereallborninApril.Mysisteristheonlyexception.Iwasbornonthe3rd,myfatheronthe11th,my motheronthe16th,myyoungerbrotheronthe17thandmyolderbrotheronthe19th.Aprilbroughta specialkindofjoyinourhome.Imstillveryattachedtothismonth.
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Myyoungerbrotherhasfoundoutthatmyfatherhadseveralchildren,withatleastfourwomen.From hisfirstwife,hehadtwochildren.Oneofthemlivedwithusandtheotherwasneverrecognizedbymy father.Ionlymethimlater,aftermymarriage,andhegratifiedmewithgreatadmiration,askingmeto bethebestmanathisweddinginMiami. Shortlyafterthewedding,hediedofeitherbonediseaseorAIDSIllneverknowforsurewhich. Fromhissecondwife(mymother),myfatherhadthefourchildrenaforementioned.AgirlwhoInever metwasbornfromhisthirdmarriage.And,fromhisfourth,therewerethreeotherchildrentwogirls andaboy.Althoughthesechildrendidnotbearmyfathersname,Fatherneverdeniedtheir relationshiptohim.Haitianlawprohibitsamarriedmantogivehislastnametoillegitimatechildren.I believethisnonsensereinforcestherefusalofcertainmentoassumetheirresponsibilityasparents. Onlyfourofallthesechildrencarriedmyfathersname:myolderbrother,bornbeforehismarriageto mymother,andmymotherschildren. Imetmyyoungestsisters,faryoungerthanme,insomewhatoddcircumstances.Thishappenedyears later,atatimewhentheeventsdescribedinthischapterbelongedtoaverydifferentpast.Iwasalready ayoungentrepreneurwithalotofenthusiasm,andwassuccessfulinthebusinessworld.GaMa,the companyIhadfounded,wascelebratingitsfiveyearanniversary.However,beforewegettoGaMa,lets gobacktotheepisodeofmyfirstencounterwithmysister. Onemorning,Iwasabouttoentermyofficeafterthesecurityofficerhadopenedthegate.AsIwas gettingoutofthecarwithmywife,anemployeeannouncedthat awomanandtwogirlswerewaitingforme.Thewomanisinquiringaboutajobasamaidservant,my secretarysaid. WhenItalkedtothewoman,sheintroducedthetwolittlegirlsasmysisters.HowterriblymovedIwas bythewholething,andhowconfusedmywifewas!Ihadcertainlyheardofmyfamilytieswiththese peoplebefore,butIwouldneverhaveexpectedtomeetthemonthatdayatwork. ShewaslookingforworkamagicalwordinHaiti.Tosatisfyourbasicneeds,weneedwork.Toimprove ourlifestyle,weneedwork.Itsarareluxury.Theformalmarketplaceisverylimited,andthe professionalcentersarebasicallyinaccessibletoapopulationconstitutedmostlyofilliterates.

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InHaiti,itiscommonpracticefortheunderprivilegedmaletolearnmanuallaborifhecannotaffordto gobeyondelementaryschool.Manuallaborenableshimtosomewhatprovidefortheneedsofhis family.Hefirstworksasanapprenticeinaworkshop. Letstalkabouttheconditionsoftheapprenticeship.Imentionedearlierthatonlyafewprofessional centersexistinHaitiandthosethatdoexistaremostlylocatedinthecapitalcity.Sohowdoesone becomeanapprentice?Thishappensthroughaprocessdatingfromcolonialtimes.Amanuallaboreror aworkmanownsaworkshopandhiressomeapprenticesyoungmentryingtoworkthecraft.Each oneoftheseapprenticeswillspendsixorsevenyearsobserving,learning,practicingthecraft,working foraminimalsalaryundertheguidanceofabs(theworkmaninchief)beforehe,himself,becomesa bs. Thebswho,inadditiontoservingasateacherofthetrade,isalsooftenperceivedasafather,an advisertotheapprenticewho,inreturn,asasignofgratitude,asksthisbstobethebestmanathis marriageorthegodfathertohisfirstborn. Suchwasthecaseofmyfather,whoworkedasacabinetmakerforalongtime.Helearnedthetrade fromthemanwholaterbecamemygodfather.Growingup,myfatherlivedwithhismotherandhis aunt.Mygrandfather,acontractor,diedwhileFatherwasstillinelementaryschool.Asanaturalchild, bornfromamistress,myfatherdidnotinheritanythingfromhimbecauseHaitianlawonlyprovidesfor legitimatechildren.Thisiswhy,althoughhehadtwowealthyhalfbrothers,oneofwhomwasavery successfullawyerandjudgeinCapHaitien,myfatherhadtoliveindireconditionswithhismother.She wastheonewhotookcareofhimsincehisbrothers,thelegitimatesons,didntacknowledgehis existence. BythetimeIwasborn,myfatherhadwonthenationallottery.Hebecameacontractor,andbought twotruckstotransportgoodsfromCapHaitientoPortauPrince.Healsoboughttwohouses,onefor hismotherandanotherforhismothersrelatives.Hedideverythingthatsusuallydonetoshowa transitionfrompovertytoacomfortablemiddleclasslifestyle. WinningthelotteryatthetimewasthesameaswinningittodayintheUnitedStates.Theamountof moneywasgreatlydifferent,ofcourse,buttheresultsweresimilar.Thosewhoarereadyforthenew wealthdoquitewell,butmostwinnersletthemoneygotowaste.Easycome,easygo.

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Unfortunately,mafatherwasnoexceptiontothemajorityrule.Followingsomeseriousaccidentsand theineffectivemanagementofhisgoods,hisfortunewasgonetosmokeinlessthantwoyears.Ithad beenonlyagleamoffortune.AsIwasturningtwo,myfamilywasbrokeonceagain. Mymother,Lucita,wasfromGrandeRivireduNord,averyremoteplaceinthemountainscalled Cormier,whichisdifficulttoaccess,eventoday.Ittakestwohoursofwalkingonaverysteeppathto getthere.MotherwasborninCormierbutlivedmostofherlifeinCapHaitien,withouteverattending school.Shelivedwithanauntwhowasadressmakerandtaughtherthesecretsofthisprofession, whichistheonethatmostunschooledgirlsinHaitilearnsotheycanfindjobsandfaceHaitianlife, whichissounstable,sodifficult. Itsstillheartbreakingformetoadmittodaythatmymotherdidnotknowhowtoread.Thiswasawell keptsecret,onethathasalwaysfilledmyheartwithimmensesorrow.Wetriedinvaintoteachherhow toread;shenevercould.However,mymotherwassointelligentinherconversationsthatnoonecould haveguessedthatshedidntknowhowtoreadorwrite.Herfatherwasafarmerwhoownedvastlands inthemountainsandabighouseintheboroughofGrandeRivire.Hehadmanychildren.Idontknow howmanyexactly,butIknownineofthem,oneofwhichisyoungerthanme.Intimesofgreatdifficulty, whenshereallyneededfoodandmoney,mymotherwouldaskherfatherforhelp.Sheusedmy grandfatherastheverylastresortasnottohurtmyfatherspride.Howpainfulthosemomentswere forbothmyparents. Myfatherfoughtforthehonorofhisfamily.Hebelievedthatatruemanshouldprovidefortheneeds ofhislovedoneswithdignityandhonesty.Itwashisgoldenrule,hisonlycompass.Thus,inspiteofthe persistentlackoffood,inspiteofthenumerousfamilyproblems,wewereinstructedtokeepsilentso thatourdiresituationwouldnotbeknowntooutsiders.Werantheriskofbeingspankedifthis principlewasviolated.Accordingtohim,puttingourproblemsinplainsightwouldbringshametothe family.WhileIdidnotinheritmoneyfrommyfather,heleftmethesepreciousvalues:perseverance, dignity,andhonesty. HereisallthatIcanmentionaboutmyoriginsIdontknowmorethanthis.Ialsorememberthatmy sisterhaddifficultyspeaking,andIwastheonlyonewhowasabletounderstandherlanguageand interpretitforothers.Ibelievethatthishandicapaffectedherforalongtime,untilshewasableto overcomeit;Ibelieveherlanguageskillsimprovedconsiderablybythetimesheturnedfive.Beforethey did,however,shedependedsomuchonmethatpeopledidnttrusther.Asaconsequence,shewas neverbrilliantatschool.However,shemanagedratherwellinlife.
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ThepreviousinformationisallthatIcanmentionaboutmyorigins;Idontknowmorethanthis.Iwill closethispageofmyhistory,whichisidenticaltothatofthousandsofLittleQuasimodos,particularly thosewhoarefrequentlyprotestinginthestreets,thoseofCitSoleil,ofBelair,ofStMartin,ofLa FossetteinCapHaitien,andsoon.AsthephilosopherRousseauwouldsay,althoughtheyarecorrupted bysociety,theseyouthsareendowedwithunlimitedpotentialthattheyshouldexplore.Ileavethe bookofmylifeopenforthem,sothattheymightbeinspiredtofinallytakestepstowardsuccess. Thisbookistheaccountofpreciouslykeptfamilysecretssecretswhichwereneverrevealed,evento thefamilyImyselffounded.Today,however,therealityofmycountrychallengesmeenoughsothatI havetogobacktomypastandshareitwithall,especiallythosewhoaredisorientatedandaimless, thosewhodestroy,rape,stealandkidnap,sothattheycanrealizethattherearebetterwaystosurvive. Maytheybeconvinced,bytheendofmyaccountofalifesosimilartotheirs,thatwhatmattersarethe choiceswemake,notourresignation;whatmattersisthecourseswetake,andnotwherewecome from.

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2.THEBIGMOVE IvealwaysbeenreluctanttotalkaboutmyjourneytoPortauPrincebecausethecircumstancesofthe tripfromCapHaitienwerequitepainful.Mymother,havinggivenbirthtoafourthchild,encountered newfinancialdifficulties.BecauseofthemanyproblemsMotherfacedinraisingherchildrenalone whileheworkedinPortauPrince,Fathersentforallofussowecouldfinallyliveunderthesameroof. MygodfatherwasnowinchargeoftheSalesianBrothersworkshop,andthatwasaplusformyfather. BythetimewearrivedinPortauPrince,myfatherhadlostallhislotterymoney,butwasoneofthekey workersattheworkshop. WemovedtoPortauPrincein1973.Iwasasixyearoldsecondgrader,andproudtobeanativeof CapHaitien.WeleftCapHaitieninthemiddleofthesecondyear.Wetookabus,LaBelleCapoise,in theweehoursofthemorningandsetoffforPortauPrince,thecapital,theParisofHaiti,withthe promiseofsocialascension.Myolderbrotherwaseleventhen,mysisterfive,andmyyoungerbrother onlyone.Atsix,Ihadnoideawhattoexpectfromthecapital. Inthebus,theenthusiasmwasalmostpalpable;thepassengerscalledoutthenamesofcities,towns andriversaswepassedthem.Asforme,Iwassittinginavehiclefortheveryfirsttime.Ilookedaround inamazement,mesmerizedbytreesmovingendlesslyalongtheroad.Thetripwasaverylongone abouttenhourswithmultiplereststops.IfeltasifIwasgoingthroughatunnelmyeyeswerewide open,yetIcouldntnameanyoftheplaceswepassed.AswefinallyapproachedTitanyen,the passengerscriedwithjoyatseeingthelightsofthecapital.Weweregettingclosetoourdestination. WearrivedverylateatPortauPrince,whereFatherwaswaiting.Wegottheresolatethatpublic transportationwasnolongeravailable,andwecouldntgethome.Wehadtofindaplacetospendthe night,andIbelieveweendedupsleepingatFathersworkshop,intheyardofSaintJeanBosco,among thewood,thechipsandthetools.Wesleptontheground,andwokeupearlythenextmorningtotake ataptaptowardhome.Ataptapisbasicallyapickuptruckwithbenchseatsinthebackandsometimesa coveringovertop.HomewasontopofMountainBourdon,anareawhereveryfewpeoplelived.Itwas inalargeyard,closetothehouseofavodoupriest,orhougan.Hewasthelandlordofthesmallhouse thatmyfatherrented. Manydifficultieswerestilltocome.

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Thehouseonlyhadtworooms.Inthefirstwasalargebed,andintheotherweresomechairs,asmall table,andacoalstove.Thatwasourhome.Myparentsandthetwoyoungerchildrensharedthebed. MyolderbrotherandIsleptonthefloor.TherearemanylargefamiliesofteninHaitithatsharetwo roomhomes.Inourcase,lifewasmostlylivedontheporch,aspaceoflessthanfoursquaremeters.On theporch,wechildrenplayed,relaxed,studiedorentertainedfriends.There,too,ourparents welcomedvisitors. InHaiti,theusualmealincludeschicken,vegetablesandfruits,withriceasastaple.Thericeisalways servedwitheitherbeans,chicken,fish,orgoatmeat,andoftencomeswithchayote,eggplant,spinach, andothergreens,suchaslalo.Groundcorn(masmoulu),althoughatraditionaldish,isnotalways appreciatedsinceitwasthemealservedtotheslavesduringcolonialtimes. Haitianfoodisveryspicy.Thesmellofthesesspicesisheavenlyforthosewhopreparethefood, althoughitcantorturethosewhoaretoopoortoeat.Eatingwellmeanseatingthreemealsaday onceinthemorning,onceintheafternoonandoncemoreafterdark. Tobepooristobeunabletoaffordthesethreemeals.Itseatingyourstapleswithoutmeat,thesure signofwealth.Meatissuchaluxuryforthepoorthatonewillsaveitforlast,justlikedessert.Tolivein miseryistoeatoncesometimesinsteadofoneormanytimesaday. Wewerepoor.Visitors,sometimes,showedupatdinnertime,butmyparentscouldntinvitethemin sincethelittlefoodwehadwasbarelyenoughforus.Thequalityofthefoodwasalsoembarrassingto ourfamilythen,comparedtowhatmorefortunateotherswereprobablyeating.Atthetime,myfamily livedalifeofshame,artificesandfrustrations,coveredbyanobsessiontohideourmisery,evenfrom thosewhoprobablysharedthesamelivingconditions. Toaddinsulttoinjury,welivedinalakou.InHaiti,alakouisabigyardwithahounfinthemiddle,and severalhousessurroundingit.Anhounforperistilisavodoutemple,thehouseofthegodsinwhich thevodoupriest(thehougan)officiates.Welivedinanenvironmentbothfearedandwellattended. Outsiderssawthelakouasthedenofevil,andallvodoupractitionersasdevilworshippers.Some peoplearesoadamantthatvodouisdevilworshipthattheyblamethechaosinHaitionthefactthat theindependencewarstartedwithavodouceremonyinBoisCaman.

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Onthelakouonwhichwelived,manywomenwereattheserviceofthehoungan.Duringtheregular vodouceremoniesonTuesday,Thursday,andSaturdaynights,thedrumrollsthataccompaniedthe ritualsgavegoosebumpstothosewhoassociatedvodoutothedevil. Thatprobablyexplainswhywechildren,wereusuallynotallowedtoleavethehouse.Wewere instructedtoremaininsideortoplayontheporch.Isupposethatmymotherwasafraidofthedrums andceremonialvaudouchantsechoingonSaturdayevenings,remindingusalloftherealityofourlife,a realitywewantedtohide,evenfromourselves:weweresopoorthatwehadtoliveclosetoavaudou temple.ThehougansnamewasBsPyanditwassaidthatheservedthegoodspirits,orlwaginen. ThiswascontrarytoCherpain,thechiefmacoute,whoseperistilwaswithinafewmetersofthemarket ofTroudeSable.LifeordeathjudgmentsweresaidtotakeplaceinCherpainshouse. So,thatwasthehouseIlivedinduringmyfirsttwoyearsinPortauPrince.Onmyarrival,Iwasntable tofinishtheschoolyearbecauseschoolsinPortauPrincedonthaverollingenrollment.Fathergaveus lessonseveryevening,uponreturningfromworkateightoclock,untilwecouldattendInstitution CoeurdeJesusatthestartofthefollowingschoolyear. TheschoolwaslocatedinDelmas,andthejourneytogettherewasratherlong.Everymorning,my siblingsandIwalkedthelongroadofMountainBourdonwithFather.Hetaughtusabouttrafficlights whentocrossaroad,andwhentowait.Unfortunately,Iseemanypoorchildreninthestreetstodayin Haiti,withnoconceptoftrafficlights,simplyraisingtheirhandstoaskdriverstoallowthemtocross. AttheendoftheroadleadingdownBourdon,wetookataxi,usuallya504stationwagonPeugeotthat lookedlikeabus.ThePeugeottookusdowntowntothemainstreet.Oncedowntown,weawaitedthe arrivalofapublicvanthatwoulddriveustoournewschoolinDelmas.CoeurdeJesuswasalarge buildingwherewewereallcontenttofinallyattendclasses. Accordingtomymother,IwasquiteagoodstudentinCapHaitien.However,atfirst,Ihadahardtime adaptingtothenewschoolinPortauPrince.Afterall,Ihadmissedhalfofaschoolyear.Onaccountof havingtutoredmeathome,however,myfatherdecidedtohavemepromotedtoahighergradelevel. ThebadmarksIobtainedgotmethemostseverepunishments,particularlyatlunchtime.Theschools scheduleallowedforanhouroflunch,duringwhichstudentscouldgatherontheschoolyardtoeat. Thatis,ifthereweresomethingtoeat.Badgrades,however,keptyouinaroomforthehourandthatis whereIoftenhadlunch.Averypoorwomanwholivedatourhouse,namedSainteAnise(justlike HaitianstandupcomicMauriceSixtosTiSainteAnise),broughtmysiblingsandmefoodattheschool.
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Atthetime,Ifounditnormaltohavethatyoungwomanatourservice,butIlaterquestionedit:We couldbarelyeatandyetwehadaservant.Howcouldweaffordher?Well,thesadtruthisthather situationwassimplyclosetoslavery,whichisstillverycommoninHaiti,wherepeopleworkforminimal salaryornopayatall.Basically,familiesthatcantaffordtofeedtheirchildrensendthemofftofriends, relatives,orclientswhopromisetotakecareofthechild(arestavk)inexchangeforsomeminorlabor. Thepersonwhotakesthechildinvowstofeedhim,givehimshelter,dresshim,andsendhimtoschool. Unfortunately,thechildoftenbecomesaslave.Somecallitmodernslavery.SainteAniselivedwithus intheseunfortunatecircumstances.Duringrecess,atnoon,shebroughtmefoodthatis,iffoodwas available.

Intheevenings,afterwestudiedathome,weawaitedthereturnofmyFatherateightoclocksohe couldmakeusreciteourlessons.Wewouldntgotobeduntilweknewtheselessonsbyheart, repeatingthemagainandagain.ItwasFathersdecisionthatIwouldgoontoahighergrade;he wantedmetocatchupwithothersmyage.BecauseIhadtoworkhardertomakeupforwhatId missed,Ilearnedearlyinlifehowtoovercomeobstacles,difficulties,dangersandchallenges. IdidnotfinishtheyearatCoeurdeJesus.Myfathercouldntaffordthepayments.Hewantedtosend ustoanothergoodschool,butthatotheronewaslocatedtoofar.Weonlyspentaboutasemesterin CoeurdeJesus.Thiswasatimeofstruggle,particularlyforme.Grammarwasmymostdifficultsubject. Andthisremainedthecaseforalongtime.Fortunately,Ihadenoughpatiencetotackledifficulties,and thisledtosomeimprovement.Ontheotherhand,Ihadarealpassionformathematics. Infact,myacademicstrugglesonlylastedayear.AftermyKindergartencareerwasabruptly interrupted,Istartedfirstgradeinthemiddleoftheschoolyear.Thereweresomanynewconceptsto learn,anewenvironmenttoadaptto,andthebrutallivingconditionsathome.Insecondgrade,I switchedtoaschoolclosertohome.Theacademiclevelwaslessrigorous,andIwasabletoadapteasily toanenvironmentthatIwasstartingtogetusedto. Situationsthatcouldbeparticularlystressful,suchasthepublicannouncementofstudentgrades, becameimportantindicatorsofmyprogress.Ifeltadeepdesiretoimprove,tosucceedinmy endeavors.Theonlyideaofnotgraduatingfromhighschoolonedaygavemetheshivers.Self confidence,pride,andadeepattractiontoprizesandtrophies,keptmeonthetracktosuccess.This attitude,andtheresultsthatfollowed,leadmetoenjoyspecialconsiderationathome,atschool,and laterineveryotheraspectofmylife.

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Fathersawveryearlyinmeafutureengineer.Thusadreamwasborn.Iclungtothisdreamduringall myyearsinschool.Timehastaughtmetovaluethepowerofthatdreamthatwastransmittedtomeby myfatherwithouthisknowing.Ilearnedthatschoolwastheonewaytoconcretizemydreams.I dreamedofbetterdaysasmyfatherwasobsessingoverbecomingacontractor.Hewantedmetothink bigbecausethis,hesaid,wouldleadmetosuccess. Ididstartthinkingbig. Onetime,myfatherleftusforaseveraldayswithoutexplanation.Hefinallyreturnedwithjoyfulnews: hewasgoingtobuildusahouse.Wewouldhaveourownhome.IlaterlearnedthatFatherhadonce morewonthelottery.ThisisacommonphenomenoninHaiti:peopletravelveryfartoprovincialtowns tovisitsoothsayerswhopredictwinninglotterynumbers.Peoplepayforthesoothsayersadvice,their heartsfilledwithhope.Iftheydowinthelottery,theyreturntothesoothsayertobringhimmore money. ThatwasthesecondandlasttimethatFathergotlucky.Themultipletripshelatertookoutoftowndid notbringhimanymoremoney.And,intheend,itwaswiththeassistanceofmygrandfather,byrequest ofhisdaughter(mymother),thatwewereabletobuythethinmetalsheetsthatcoveredthehouse.My grandfatherarrived,largerthanlife,ahardworker,afighter,scandalizedbytheprecariousnessofour economicsituation.Hebroughtuswhatweneededthemostmoneyandfood.Hecountedastackof dirtybillsandgavethemtoTata,mymother.Thistime,myfather,whousuallyscornedgiftsfrom grandfather,hadtoagreetothemoneybecausethedailylivingsituationofthefamilyhadworsened, anditwaspressingthatwebuysheetsfortheroofofthenewhouse. Ourfamilywasfinallyabletomovetothatnewplace.Andjustlikethat,afamilyofpeasantsgotthe financialmeanstolivehumbly.Butourfamilystillhadsomanyneeds!Thenewhouse,really,was nothingmorethanaslum,similartothoseofmanyHaitianslivinginshantytowns,suchasCitSoleil, CitdeDieuorLaFossette,inCapHaitien.Initially,ourhomeonlyhadtworoomsandaporch,justlike thehousewerentedfromthehougan.Later,myfatheraddedanotherroom,whichbecamemy parentsbedroom.Oneoftheotherroomswasdividedintwobyapaperboardwall.Halfofthatroom becamemybrothersroom.Theotherhalf,withafewchairsandatable,servedasbothalivingroom anddiningroom.Ifoundthehousehorrible,particularlyonrainydayswhenwaterfilteredinthrough theholesthatstrewedthethinsheets.Everythinggotwet:beds,chairs,clothingeverything.Weused bucketstotrytopreventasmuchwateraspossiblefromdamagingourgoods.

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However,wechildrenlovedtobatheundertherain.Howfun!Sowenevercomplainedabouthavingto gooutsidetofillcontainerswithwaterforlateruse.Therainsavedusfromhavingtowalkseveral kilometersinordertogetwaterfordailyneeds,attheriverortheravinewhereTatawashedthelinens. DuringHurricaneDavid,welivedourworstmomentsinthishouse.OnAugust31st,1979,thewindwas soviolentthatwehadtohelpourfatherputconcreteblocksonthesheetstopreventthemfrom blowingaway.Ispentthatdayinsorrow,andhopenevertorelivesuchanexperience.Inspiteofour bestefforts,sheetsflewawayfromtheroof,andourhouseflooded.Ithenunderstoodthedifference betweenahousewithathinroofandonewithaconcreteroof.Therefore,Icertainlyunderstandwhy theHaitianshantytownshavesincebecomeConcreteCities.

Haitihadntwitnessedanaturaldisasterformanyyears.AndthencameHurricaneDavid.Itsfurytook theHaitianpeopleoffguardandbroughtsomuchpaintothecountrythatwewereevenaffectedata culturallevel.SeveralsongswerewrittenaboutHurricaneDavid.Atfirst,naturaldisastersparalyzethe Haitianpeople,andthenthepeoplewakeuptheyfindwaystosurviveandprepareforMother Naturesnextslap.Itisdifficulttoexpectproactiveattitudeswhentheseparadigmsaresodeeply engravedinourminds.

Inmomentslikethese,youfeelthatnatureisunjusttowardthepoor;youfeelpowerlessagainstforces thatarebeyondyourcontrol;yougofromhatredtorevolt,andthentodesperation.Afterthe hurricane,wewerestillfacingthechallengesoffeedingourhungrybelliesandpayingforschool.We couldbarelyaffordtoputclothesonourbacks.Whennaturaldisastersstrike,thepoorbecomepoorer. Andyouwonder:ispovertynaturalandincontrovertible? Inordertogetreadyforthenextnaturaldisaster,peopleusuallystorefoodandkeepsomecashhandy. Butthepoordonthavemoneyinthefirstplacecashorotherwise.Then,theyareunabletostock foodorsavemoneyfordifficultdays.Togobacktoanormalwayoflifeafteranytypeofhurricaneis particularlydifficultforthepoor,whowerealreadylivingindireconditionsbeforethedestruction.Ive beeninthissituationsomanytimesinmypersonallifethatIamcertainlyqualifiedtomakethis statement.Icarryinmyheartthememoryofthepowerlessnessbroughtbypoverty.

Inmomentslikethese,youturntothesupernaturalinanattempttofindanswerstothequestionsthat humanscannotanswer.Somephilosophizeaboutmiseryandpovertyinordertoacceptthese constraints.Othersbecomedefendersofthepoor,withoutreallyunderstandingtheirmisery.


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Asachild,Ialreadysoughttheanswerstoquestionsrelatedtopoverty.Iwasbitterandhatedmy situation.Iwasthusdeterminedtofightitandovercomepoverty.ManyofthecountrysSimpleSimons liveinmisery;chanceisusuallynotontheirside.Whilereadingthesepages,Ihopeyoullrealizethat povertysetablazeseveralHaitianfamilies,likefireinadesiccatedforest. InHaiti,itiscustomaryforneighborswhogetalongtosharefood.Followingmyfathersinstructions,we weretoobeyTata,whoforbadeustoacceptfoodfromtheneighbors,forfearofbringingshameupon ourfamily.Sometimes,fromtheneighborskitchens,camethepleasantsmelloffoodbeingprepared. Ah,ifonlywedbeenallowedtoaccepttheneighborsinvitations.However,becauseourhungryfamily neverhadanythingtogiveback,wedidnotpracticethiscustom.Myfatherwouldnothaveapprovedof usacceptingcharity. Irememberthesesaddayswhenweeagerlyawaitedmyfathersreturnfromworkatnight, afterbreadandcoffeehadbeenouronlymeal.Wealsohadcoffeeandbreadinthemorning,asitisthe customarybreakfastformostHaitians.Toooften,thesmallstovewasusedonlyintheearlymorning. Afterbreakfast,weusuallywenthungryforthewholeday,awaitingmyfathersreturn.Fromourhouse ontopofthemountain,standingontheporchintheevening,wecouldseehimarrive,theonlyhopeof thefamily,themaincarrierofourfinancialburdens. Motherdidnothaveapayingjob.Shedidntsellthingsinthestreetsoratthemarket,likemost Haitianwomendo.Thus,Fatherwasouronlyhopeforfinancialstability.Ashourspassed,wewereleft waiting,hoping.Theshadowsgrewlonger,andmyfatherwasstillgone.Therewasnotelephonetocall him,nowaytoknowwherehewas,atwhattimetoexpecthim,andmostimportant,ifhewasbringing usfood.Toooftenhecamebacklate,aroundeightoclock,emptyhanded.Andwehadnochoicebutto consumecoffeeandbreadonceagain.Mothersometimesmixedwaterwithsugartocalmthehunger andhelpusfallasleep.Inoursleep,wehaddreamsthatweresodifferentfromourreal,despicable lives. OnSunday,althoughthetraditionalHaitianmealincludedchicken,nothingwasdifferentatour house.Idreamedaboutbetterdays!Myfatherneverstoppedsayingthatschoolwastheonlyroadthat wouldleadtomydreams.Myuncle,alawyerandlaterajudgeinCapHaitien,livedawaybetterlife thanwedid.Ifiguredthateducationhadmadethedifferencebetweenmyuncleandmyfather.

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3.OFFTOGRAMMARSCHOOL! Iattendedthreeothergrammarschoolsallinexecrableshape.Ihatedthemanddreamedofattending agoodschool,withbigbuildingsandclasseslikethoseatCurSacrdeJsus,withatleastoneteacher foreachclass.Inmanyschools(andIbelievethisisstillthecasetoday),differentgradelevels sometimesshareaclassroom;thishappenswhentheadministrationdecidesthatnotenoughstudents haveregisteredforclasses. TheseschoolsIattendedweresmallhouseswiththreeorfourroomsandapatio.Studentssaton uncomfortableandunsafewoodenbenches.Thetableswereoftennailedtothewallsoftheclassroom, andIworked,facingthiswall,underthesupervisionofaschoolmasterwhooftenhadnoteven completedgrammarschoolaschoolmasterwhosejobwastohaveusmemorizeandrecite unexplainedconceptsinanunknownlanguage.Manyoftheseteachershadatonetimeprobablybeen studentsunabletocomprehendtheseexactsameconcepts. Iboughtmywornoutbooksatwhatwasatthetimeoneofthelargestbookshopsinthecapital:the frontoftheCathedralofPortauPrince,whereyoucouldfindnotonlyschoolbooks,butbooksofall kinds,coveringallpossibletopics.Oneday,duringoneofmyperusals,IfoundAlbertCamusManin Revolt,alongwithmanyothernovels.Studentslikemewereunawareoftheveryexistenceoflibraries. Howdifficultwasittolearnundersuchcircumstances! Imnotsurewhatexactlyhappenedaroundthatperiod,butIwassuddenlyexcellingatschoolagain;I foundmyselfatthetopofmyclass.OneofmyteacherswasMasterRosemont,andanotherwasMaster Felix.Atoneoftheschools,locatedonasmallstreetinChristRoi,Ifailedtheadmissionexambecause ofmypoorscoreinCatechism.Unliketheotherstudents,IhadnotdonemyFirstCommunioninthe thirdgrade.IknewtheOurFather,butinfrontofthepriest,Isuddenlycouldntrememberthelast partoftheprayer.Thiswasatragedy,athomeandatschool.Itwasinconceivablethatastudentontop ofhisclasscouldnotonlyfailtheadmissionexam,butfailitinsuchcircumstances. Mymothercameupwithasolutionthatwasmorelikeapunishmenttome:inordertoreapplytothat schoolthefollowingyear,Iwouldpreparefortheadmissionexambytakingbiblestudyatchurchinthe evenings,whentheyofferedspecialsessionsforchildservantscalledrestavk.Iwouldtakethese classesuntilIwasreadytosucceed.Whatashame!Ifelthumiliated,havingtoattendaclassreserved forrestavk,childrenwhodidnotlivewiththeirparentsandworkedasservantsforwealthyfamilies.

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Inspiteofmyattendingtheseclasses,however,IwasperceivedasdifferentfromtheothersbecauseI livedwithmyparents.Iwasunawarethenofthewholepicture,ofeverythingthesechildren,among whichIfeltsohumiliated,hadtoendure.Iwassimplyconsciousofsocialbarriersandprejudicesthat prohibitedmefromplayingwiththem.MauriceSixto,theHaitiansatirist,hasdrawnanexactpictureof thelifeoftheserestavkorTiSentaniz.Hestoldoftheirsorrowandmisery.Mysituationwasbetter thantheirs. Ilearnedsomethingfromthisepisode:theHaitiancommunitydoesnotallowyoutostrayfrom whateverisconsidersthenorm.Inschool,thirdgradewastheonlygradeduringwhichastudentcould dohisorherfirstcommunion.Ifyoumissedtheopportunitythen,therewasnowaytomakeupforit. Myclassmatesweretodotheirconfirmationthefollowingschoolyear.Iwasnotallowedtojointhe group. Iwasntallowedacademicfailure,either;ifIhaddecidedtostopworkinghardformygrades,Iwould haveacceptedtosharemymothersfate.Therefore,Isuccessfullycompletedallmyprimarystudies underthesupervisionofMasterFelixattheNewSchoolofBourdon.Ibelievethatthisschoolstillexists. Theschoolhadalargeryard,moreclassroomspace,andIwaswelllikedbyMasterFelix.There,for once,Iwashappy.ThankstomyfatherbecomingthemainbsataworkshopinBourdonandbringing homeasomewhatsteadyincome,Iwasablenevertomissschool.Myfatherwasdoingcabinetrywork foraFrenchmaninchargeofbuildingLesRsidencesdelaValle,anapartmentcommunityfor foreignersworkinginPortauPrince. IhadjustcompletedthesixthgradewhenIwasaskedtotutoranotherstudentattheschool,which meantnomorebiblestudyformewiththerestavk.Thistutoringjoballowedmetoearnsomemoney, whichIusedtomeetcertainneeds.Forinstance,Icouldbuyjuiceorsodaafterlunch,whichwas consideredaluxury.Iwasgoodinschoolandprovedbright,whichprovidedmewithcertainprivileges. Atparentconferences,theadministratorsalwayscongratulatedmyfatherandcalledmegifted. Atthatpoint,itbecamecleartomethatsuccessandcompetencehadnothingtodowithwhereone camefrom.AlthoughIwasntattendingthebestschools,myperformancecomparedtothatofthe betteroffstudentsregisteredinrespectableinstitutions.Ifeltmuchcompassiontowardmysister,who wasstrugglingatschool,andalsotowardmybrother,whowasobligatedtoworkasacabinetmaker withmyfather,againsthisliking.Itookmyyoungerbrotherundermywing;hebecamelikeasontome, andImadesurehehadalltheacademicrequirementsneededtoattendabetterschoolthepublic schoollocatedinBoisVerna.IsupportedhimthroughoutsecondaryschoolinLycePtion.Today,hes
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marriedandlivesinCanada.Istilltalktohimlikeafatherwouldason,andweoftenponderthedifficult momentswewentthroughtogether. IrememberquitewelloneofmyclassmateswhowasmucholderthanIwas,andworkedasatennis instructoratBellevueCircle.Heoftenspokeaboutthissport,whichwasapassionforrichpeoplewho paidhimquitewellforprivatelessons.Iwasalwayseagertohearaboutthewayoflifeofthewealthy. Myfatheralsospokeoftenabouttherich.Ibecameverymuchinterestedintennis,andstartedtaking lessonswithanotherfriendattheDadadouCenter,asportingcenterbuiltbyJeanClaudeDuvalierin theeightiesintheareaofDelmas3.Myfirstracketwasagiftfrommyfather,whohadreceiveditfrom aFrenchplayer. FromtheFrench,Ialsolearnedtolovedogs,becausemyfatheroftenspokeofthekindwayFrench peopleandrichpeople,ingeneral,treatedtheirdogs.Iwillneverforgetmysadnessthedayayoung childkilledadogbybeatinghimontheheadwithastick. IoftenvisitedmyfatherattheRsidencedelaValleinBourdon.Hisworkshopwasasmallhouseinthe centerofagiganticfield.WheneverIvisitedhim,Ihadfunobservingtherichpeoplethere.Ineverfelt hatredtowardthem.Ijustwantedtolivelikethem.Thisbecameaburningdream,ofwhichIbecame moreandmoreawareasdayswentby.IknewthatIhadtocontinueworkinghardinschoolinorderto becomeanengineer.Arichengineer. Justlikeme,myfatherhadbigdreams.First,hewantedtoopenabakery(hisfatherhadowneda bakery).HealsowantedtobuyaMercedes.Unfortunately,hisdreamsshatteredashemademoreand moremistakes.Hehadtoomanywomenandtoomanychildrentosupport.Hewasmissingdiscipline andfinancialintelligence,whichnoonehadtaughthim.Yearslater,Iwasastoundedtofindoutthe numberofmistressesandchildrenmyfatheractuallyhad,includingthreechildrenthatInevergotto meet,despitemyfrequentvisitstohisworkshop.Myolderbrother,however,gottoknowthemallvery well.Itturnsoutthatmyparentshaddecidedtohidetheexistenceofthesesiblingsfromme. Idreamedofleadingthelifeofarichperson.Manyyoungpeoplehavethisdreamtoday.Inmycase, however,IcametotherealizationthatIneededtotakeactiontoreachthisdream.Eachday,Ifocused onmygoal.Ibelievedthatschoolwasthepathtofollow.EverytimeIheldabook,Iremindedmyself thatIwasworkinghardtobecomeanengineer.Toberich:thiswasmydreamadreamsharedby manyyoungpeoplewholiveinanonymity,inthemarginsoftheHaitiansociety.Socialbarriersbring pessimism;theseyoungstersbelievethattheyarenotentitledtolivethedream,andtheylearntohate
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theprivileged.Fortunately,athome,mysiblingsandIweretaughtreligiousmorals.Welearnedabout theneedsofthespirit(learning),ofthebody(dailybread),andoftheheart(church).Thankstothese religiousvalues,Icouldneverhateotherpeoplejustforwhattheyhad.Today,thehatredofthemasses againsttherichreinforcestheproblemsthatHaitiansocietyhasfacedforcenturies. Toberichisadreamthatshapedmyeverythought.Lifedoesntofferanygift.Successrequires continuouseffort,whichincludesfacingourfearsandgettingoverourshortcomingsinalltheirforms. Successisnotonlyfortherich;itisnotmeantforaparticularraceorthefollowersofacertainreligion. Successismeantfortheonewhofollowshisorherdreams.Evenatayoungage,mydreamsfueledall myactions.SomecalledmecrazywhenIsaidthatnothingcouldtakethesedreamsaway,aslongasI wasstillbreathing.ThisiswhatmoreyoungHaitiansneedtodo:tolearnhowtoentertainpositive thoughtsleadingtotheemergenceofamodernsocietyfoundedontheworshipofworkandtherespect forlifeandgoods. Consideringmypositiontoday,somewouldsaythatIamblessedtohavebeenagiftedstudent. Unfortunately,theHaitianeducationalsystemonlysupportsthemostgifted.Itisthesamewithin families;specialtreatmentisgiventothebrainyones.TheHaitiansocietyiselitist.Tocurethe educationalproblemsthatdevastatethecountry,weneedamoresuitablesystemthatidentifiesthe aptitudesandlearningstylesofeachstudent.Everystudenthasunlimitedpotential.Thispotential needstobeidentifiedandusedproperly.Thosethrowingrocksatbuildingstodaymighthavebeen talentedlaunchersintheOlympicGameshadtheirlivestakenadifferentpath.Theythrowsowelland withsuchprecision! Onessuccesshasalottodowithonesselfperception.Hatredshouldberejectedinoursociety; revengeshouldbebanished.Wemustbreakfromtheoldmentality,koupett,boulekay.(Duringthe RevolutionWar,DessalinesorderedhistroopstoCutofftheheadsandburnthehousesofallthose perceivedasenemies).Weneedtoembracetheassetsandvaluesthatweallhave,andstartrebuilding thiscountry,whichbelongstoallofus,and,asanoblenation,putdowntruetracksofprogress. Pessimismissoendemicinoursocietythatwetoooftenunderestimateourselvesandacceptthe failuresofourchildrenwhentheybelievethattheyllneveramounttoanything.Ournegativeattitudes putupobstacles;ouryouthneedstobetaughtthatcourageandperseverancecanhelpconquerthese obstacles.

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Mysisterwentthroughaschoolsystemthatdidnotmeetherspecificneeds;hermarksatschoolwere alwaysunsatisfactory,despitehercontinuedefforts.Shedevelopedhatred,notonlytowardthesystem, butalsotowardmyfatherandme.Later,shecametohateherself.Finally,shemovedtotheUnited States,whereshewasabletosucceed.Today,farfromthejudgmentalattitudeofthosearoundher,she livesaquiet,fulfilledlife.Wehavebecomecloser;sheseesmeasatrustworthybrotherandhasa specialloveforme.Allthisshowsthatthefamilyyougrowupincaneitherleadyoutobelievein yourselfandsucceed,orteachyoupessimismandbringyoudown.

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