Stay or Go: How uFondwa Helps Haitians Make a Difference at Home

Have you ever wondered about the path not taken?

It’s amazing how a single decision can change the entire course of your life. Just think back to when you were 17 and deciding where to go to university. Can you imagine how different your life would have been if you decided to go to school on the other side of the country? You would have developed different friendships, different professional contacts, you may have even fallen in love with someone else. That one choice determined the entire course of your life, and who you are today is a direct result of that.

Now, imagine a teenage girl living in rural Haiti. She too has a choice to make that will determine the course of her life, and possibly even the lives of the community around her. And it all starts with that same question, where will she decide to go to school?

Without uFondwa

If, and this is a big IF, she can afford to get a post-secondary education, she could choose to go to university in Port au Prince or another urban school. She leaves her family and friends and moves to the city. Chances are that she will study something that is completely unrelated to helping Haiti. On this path, her education will direct her away from her rural roots. When she graduates, she will likely make the same choice as many of her peers and move away from Haiti to the United States or another wealthier country. There, she will make her own way in the world, perhaps finding financial and personal success, but forever leaving her country behind.

This is a very common tale in Haiti for those who can afford to go to university or are lucky enough to get a rare scholarship. They often leave to seek their fortune elsewhere. Of course, if they don’t have the financial resources to go to an urban university, they won’t be going anywhere. They will stay in their rural home, doing their best to help their family and community, but without the skills they need to really make a difference.

With uFondwa

Let’s imagine that this same young woman made a different choice and decided to attend uFondwa instead of leaving for Port au Prince.

Something that uFondwa offers that few other schools do is financial assistance to the rural poor. Thanks to donations from folks like you, we can offer scholarships that change the course of young people’s lives. And often, their communities as well.

Going to uFondwa, this young woman will choose to major in either Agronomy, Veterinary Medicine, or Business Management. In these programs, she will gain practical experience, often working within her own community to build sustainable systems that can help to stabilize rural economies.

In our Agronomy program, she would learn about the challenges of producing food, helping to reverse decades of unsustainable agricultural practices that have resulted in deforestation and soil erosion. In the Veterinary Medicine program, she would specialize in the health management of livestock such as cattle, horses, goats, pigs, and poultry. And in the Business Management program, she would learn about the complex socio-economic challenges currently facing Haiti and work to implement an integrated response to create wealth in rural areas. All of these programs are designed to directly improve the quality of life for those who live in rural communities.

Once she graduates from uFondwa, she is likely to remain in Haiti and continue to help her fellow Haitians. The vast majority of our graduates stay here, rather than move to the States to find work. Instead, they will develop entrepreneurial projects designed to improve the life of peasants and work to preserve and protect the fragile environment and resources of Haiti. We are proud that today, 70% of our graduates are working or volunteering in their field of study.

Our mission is to create economic, intellectual, and environmental wealth throughout Haiti to help everyone, whether they live in rural communities or not, achieve their full human potential and live with dignity.

 

Your donations have the opportunity to change the course of real people’s lives. By offering scholarships to rural communities, students can gain a post-secondary education that can directly impact their home. Young women can realize their true potential and inspire other young people to follow in her footsteps. You can choose to donate to uFondwa on a weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, annual, or one-time basis. Every dollar will go towards helping rural Haitians get a post-secondary education, possibly changing the course of their entire country’s future! Please donate today!