In January, 2010, a massive earthquake hit Port Au Prince in Haiti, causing widespread detruction and dispair. It also brought the world’s attention to this island nation, the poorest in the western hemisphere. In August of 2010, my husband Tim and I made our first trip to Haiti, a trip that led to the creation of Be the Power of One, a non-profit whose mission is to promote education in developing communities.
Since that time, we have returned to Haiti every year, and Be the Power of One has completed several projects at an elementary school in the small town of Pignon. The school now has clean drinking water, thanks to a joint effort of both Oakhurst Rotary Clubs as well as the Rotary Club in Tracy, California. Children have a hot meal to eat at school, often times their only meal for the day. Our newest effort, brings a nurse to the school to teach the kids about health and hygiene.
Meanwhile, we are working on a project to build a new kitchen and eating area at a school in Mexico. We always return from our trips with a new sense of purpose and an appreciation for the wealth that we have in this country.
Be the Power of One raises funds through individual contributions at this point, and we’re working with a grant writer to apply for larger funds.
We have several people who are providing regular monthly contributions of $10 or more. That money goes a long way in a country like Haiti. For instance, just $25 supplies over 300 meals. As Tim puts it, “that’s some bang for your buck!”
Along with monthly contributions, we hold an annual fundraising event, and everyone is invited to attend. For four years Be the Power of One has been throwing a benefit party and this year is no exception.
The event is an afternoon of tasting local wines, enjoying appetizers from local chefs and listening to the sounds of local musicians – all coming together to help kids around the world. There is also original artwork by local artist Mandy Brasa that some lucky person will leave with.
This year’s fundraiser is being held, once again, at the Queen’s Inn by the River this Saturday, May 21 from 2 – 5 p.m. The weather will determine if it is inside the tasting room or on the patio. Suggested donation for entry is $30 per person.
Tim and I are proud of the fact that nearly every dollar contributed goes right to the programs that Be the Power of One supports. If you’re interested in learning more about Be the Power of One, visit the website at BeThePowerOf1.org. Or better yet, contact us to come speak to your group. We love spreading the word!
Susan Madden is the organization’s executive director.