MIAMI (CBS4) – It has been more than a year since the earthquake in Haiti and still the country is in desperate need of help. But there is one South Florida man with a special connection to Haiti trying to fill that need.
The children of that country have a level of appreciation people cannot begin to imagine. CBS4 was invited along to witness the help being handed out to children of a country struggling to bounce back.
CBS4 cameras went to a school where 3 and 4-year-olds greeted a group of complete strangers who were there to see the fruits of their labor.
The children attend a new school called Ti Aiyti in Cite’ Soleil, Haiti. The school was built by Food for the Poor, a South Florida based organization helping combat poverty one kid at a time.
Among the visitors was Lesly Clervil who met with children who now have a fighting chance at a future because of their new school.
“If you don’t know how to read write; you are nobody. That made the difference in me. I did my time here and now look at me,” Clervil told CBS4’s Jorge Estevez.
Clervil is more than a Food for the Poor employee. Like the children in the classrooms he went to visit, he also grew up in Haiti. His connection grew more intense, after the earthquake. Clervil came to the island not only to help strangers, but also his family.
“I lost my mom, two Aunties and three nephews and nieces. I buried them myself,” said Clervil, who had his family home crumble down the side of the hill.
The devastation has only worsened since the quake leaving families with nothing. Still, people in Haiti keep their spirits up. The crowd gathered at a kitchen where Food for the Poor hands out hot meals to families who would otherwise not be eating, spent the day cheering singing and chanting.
“They know before they leave here today they are going to get that bucket of rice and chicken that is being served to feed their children that are waiting,” said Delane Bailey-Herd, project manager for Food for the Poor in Haiti.
Food for the Poor’s Warehouse in Haiti is full of donated supplies and people working round the clock. The organization has been helping the people of Haiti for 25 years.
“I am giving my time and giving my sweat. I am going to keep doing it because I see the changes,” said Clervil.