Haiti is the poorest country in the western hemisphere. 80% of Haitians live in poverty and 62% of the population lives on less than $1.25 each day. Tragically, the 2010 earthquake created an additional 150,000 orphans in a single day. The rampant poverty also negatively impacts the ability of children to attend school, making it difficult for families to break this devastating cycle of poverty. For every 100 children, 40 will never go to school and 55% of the population is illiterate.
HOW WE’RE INTERVENING FOR ORPHANS IN HAITI
In 2012, AGCI introduced our holistic model of family-like care to a local children’s home, Rivers of Hope, near Port-au-Prince, Haiti. In just 3 years, we witnessed over 120 lives changed through our holistic care model! AGCI painted bright murals, tackled safety projects, installed a new water filtration system, created an outdoor play space and today, the home is spotless! But most importantly, the care is now life-changing—caregivers were trained in the importance of engagement and affection and two teachers now come to the home each day to teach lessons and provide purposeful play. We’re so thrilled to share that this home has since reunified over 30 children with their birth families and facilitated many adoptions. Additionally, thanks to AGCI’s advocacy, 1,136 children and families received critical support in the wake of devastating natural disasters.
We began working with Rivers of Hope in 2012. This home provides loving, family-like care for children in the area surrounding Port-au-Prince, Haiti. There are 40 children—from newborns to 8 year olds—at Rivers of Hope. Haiti is one of the least-developed countries in the western hemisphere and is one of the poorest in the world. Many children arrive extremely malnourished and have been cared for by single mothers dramatically impacted by poverty.
Rivers of Hope staff is made up of full-time special mothers, social workers, and a dedicated director. Loving special mothers work round the clock to ensure every child receives the one-on-one attention, love and affection they need to thrive.
AGCI has served children and families in Haiti since 2012! Haiti is a Hague accredited country and committed to the adoption process. AGCI is one of a select group of adoption agencies allowed to provide international adoptions in Haiti.
Our first 8 children were recently united with their forever families after 3 years! AGCI has received 9 official referrals through IBESR and in the past 6 months, we have placed 7 children with their forever families, including two sibling groups!
AGCI is working to observe and assess Haiti’s inter-country adoption process and assist IBSR and the State Department in troubleshooting the gaps within the system. We’re beginning to form a collation of NGOs that are committed to a shared standard of operations and accountability structures within Haiti.
Our goal is to begin changing the way support is given in Haiti by keeping organizations accountable financially.
For many children, the loving care we provide is so much more than hope for a brighter future; it’s lifesaving. Marc was clinging to life when he arrived at our partner home in Haiti. He was despondent, extremely malnourished, and covered in severe 3rd-degree burns. With no time to fundraise or pursue other options, our emergency medical fund allowed Rivers of Hope staff to confidently seek out the best medical care for him. After spending a month in the hospital, 2-and-a-half-year old Marc is now back at Rivers of Hope and thriving thanks to much-needed love and care. This care saved Marc’s life. At almost any other home, or any other hospital, Marc’s chances for survival would’ve been almost nonexistent.