Plateau de Fin, Haiti (IOCC) It takes ten-year-old Lovena almost one and half hours to walk to school every morning from her rural mountain village in Plateau de Fin, Haiti, but she doesn't mind. She and her classmates from the area surrounding the town of Embouchure welcomed the beginning of their academic year this month in a brand new school. Putting your support into action, IOCC along with ACT Alliance partner, Finn Church Aid provided assistance for the demolition of the old school severely damaged in the 2010 earthquake and the construction of a new earthquake and hurricane resistant building.
Although Embouchure is in one of the most remote mountain regions of Haiti and access to this rugged area is difficult, rebuilding in the same area was crucial to the well-being of these earthquake survivors. St. Joseph school, originally established in 1982, serves as the only school for more than 300 children from 11 villages in the Embouchure region, and the area directly below the school hosts a large weekly market every Tuesday for over 1,000 people who come from near and far. The school also provides community shelter during hurricanes.
Rebuilding permanent and safe structures to accommodate as many children as possible at St. Joseph school in Embouchure provides the geographically disadvantaged children an opportunity to complete a highly prized education and establishes a community lifeline for the families who are otherwise isolated from the rest of the country.
Lovena's mother and cousin were among the many people hired for the reconstruction project. Lovena watched the construction progress with
great interest from the nearby temporary school tent. The fourth-grader, who hopes to be a cook one day, thinks the new school is much nicer looking than the old one. "I am very happy to be one of the students studying there," says Lovena.
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