It’s been five years now that a devastating earthquake hit Carribean island Haiti and left the less developed country with even more problems. Eduacation, business, jobs. All that is still affected and about to be improved.
UCLA-Alumni Elisha Chan, together with a group of more ex-students, is trying to support the country. Supporting local businesses, such as coffee plants or designers and manufacturers, as well as the young people of the country – mostly by giving them opportunities to work and be educated.
Studying is not free in Haiti, as Chan co-worker Bryan Citrin tells the transatlantic diablog. Currently on a tour through Europe, called the Haiti EXPO Europe, the project focuses on a well-known phrase:
Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; show him how to catch fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.“
Chan who, as a former UCLA-student, could have made another form of career, says: “In my heart I know it’s worth it“. Like her co-workers she’s been to Haiti more than a few times. A country that’s called “the Republic of NGOs”, she says. Many non governmental organisation work there at the moment – such as the Bill Clinton Foundation.
“Tourism also is a big part“, Chang says. “It’s the perfect moment to go there right now“. It’s one hour from Florida to Haiti. But it’s also, according to Elisha Chan, a country that still has a bad perception. “The earthquake kind of put Haiti on the map again“. Maybe a chance for her project to get more attention while empowering people with skills and provide what Haiti really needs.
“What people really need are jobs and opportunities“, Chan tells the transatlantic diablog.