Many of my friends question why I go to Haiti so often…it is a significant expenditure of time and money.  The easy answer is because I want to.  The more complicated explanation is why I want to.  I am convinced that it makes a difference.  It makes a difference on a personal one-on-one basis.  It makes a difference in establishing relationships and it truly makes a difference in assuring that programs are being run appropriately and that we are being good stewards of our donors’ gifts.  Being with our friends in Haiti is tangible evidence that we care and that they are not forgotten.

On the personal front, I have become friends with people on the island and have attended a funeral of a grandmother, have been invited to a wedding and even have Facebook exchanges!  There is a level of trust, not perfect, but a solid level of trust that allows me to have honest and often difficult conversations with our partners.  And sometimes, I am in the right place at the right time to witness small miracles.

In Facebook posts since the first of November, we have featured  “names” – individuals whose lives have been transformed by partnership programs.  I know all of these people personally and have seen them grab opportunities to better their lives and provide for their families.  Those are the names.

But, many want to know numbers and I am a numbers person myself.  I believe our numbers are compelling – over 95 cents of every dollar donated goes directly into programming.  We do this without a staff.  Over the last year, the partnership has:

Provided education for 2500 children and fed them a hot nutritious lunch every school day.

Supported literacy classes for 200 adults

Provided 1000 women with prenatal care

Treated 345 malnourished children

Extended microcredit to over 50 people

Purchased over 100 pregnant goats for farmers who lost their livestock in Hurricane Matthew.

That is the whole story.  Many names add up to numbers.  Those numbers are evidence of the impact of our programs.  It has been one of the true joys of my life to witness the transformative power of philanthropy.  Your gifts can be transformative as well.

Lee Wilder

For the Partnership