The objective of climb7summits4haiti.org is to empower the people of Haiti to financially support themselves and eventually become independent of outside financial support. It does this primarily through assisting Haitian grassroots organizations that help the people of Haiti become financially independent. All funds donated to climb7summits4haiti go directly to such organizations. Climb7summits4haiti.org, Inc. is a Florida based non-profit corporation that qualifies under the U.S. Internal Revenue Service as a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charity.
We currently are supporting a Haitian nonprofit, apolitical, association called Association Notre Dame du Perpetuel Secours et de L’espoir (Association of Our Lady of Perpetual Help and Hope). The Association, which was formed in 2006, serves its members who live in Lafond, a residential section near the town of Jacmel. Membership is open to any resident of the community without discrimination.
Donations support their objectives, which are to:
A primary activity that these funds will benefit is the Association’s micro-credit program. Through this program, the Association purchases at wholesale items sellable in the community such as food. Members then purchase the items on credit and pay back their loans with the profits from their sales. The program includes financial education of its members to increase the chances that they will be profitable.
I visited the members of the association during trips to Haiti in February and December 2017. I saw how the program works and interviewed several of the Association members. (See the pictures from these visits on the Pictures page.)
Guerra described how the program works for her, particularly the micro credit feature. “I purchase the items I sell from the Association on credit. When I come back to the warehouse to replenish my supplies, I pay off the credit from the last purchase and buy the new materials.”
Solitude told me, “I used to have to drive three hours one way to Port-au-Prince to pick up supplies at retail to sell. I made very little money. Now I can purchase them here in my community at our wholesale from my Association.”
Madam Preslaire explained, “I have been a member of the Association for 10 years. I replace my supplies every week or two and I can supplement my family’s income with the sales I make.”
Other women also told me about how members of the Association support each other. I was moved to hear, as an example, how after a family member dies, they all assist the member and her family by preparing meals, attending the funeral, and providing other material and emotional support.
I could see how these women not only were able to successfully promote financial independence through their Association, but also support each other and their families as a "caring village". It became clear to me that the way this Association functions is a most effective way to promote a dignified self-sufficiency that is greatly needed to help the Haitian people pull their country out of severe poverty. Perhaps this will be a model for the rest of Haiti, and even the world.