Our organization was officially formed in 2006 when we were able to collaborate with the local pastor on the island of Ile a Vache, Haiti in a small fishing village of Caille Coq. We realized that the children were extremely poor, living in small straw like huts. These children didn’t eat on a daily basis and certainly had no education. Our hearts broke for these children. With the God-given vision of a Haitian- born woman who was raised in the States, the members of the organization raised funds to provide the local church a facility for its elementary school.
Within several years we were able to purchase land and in 2008 we broke ground to build 3 new classrooms. The church location is still used for the other classes until the new school is built. The local pastor with the expanded facility was able to invite 64 of the poorest children in the surrounding area into the program. The children ranged from age 4-14. They were given uniforms, all school materials, a warm nutritious meal daily and an education. Some of these children had never attended a school before even though they were advanced in age. Under the pastors leadership the school was able to catch them up and move them along to the proper level. The school has now grown to 150 students in 2014 serving grades K-6.
As the organization has poised itself for growth we have undergone a name change and are now known as “Help Haiti Kids.” Help Haiti Kids is a non-profit 501c3 organization. The organization is designed to benefit the local children in Ile a Vache, Haiti.
The island of Ile a Vache is located south west of the port city Les Cayes, Haiti. The island is 8 miles /12.9 km long and 2 miles/ 3.2 km wide and hosts a population of approximately 15,000-18,000 inhabitants.
Melissa Sajous is President of the organization. Since the age of 12 Melissa has had it in her heart to help empoverished children. She graduated from Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois with an Interdisciplinary degree, which included Business Management, Education and Bible. She returned to Haiti to intern with New Life Children’s Home in Petit Post Cazeau for six months where she lived with the children to better understand their needs. She also volunteered at various orphanages teaching English. She then worked as assistant to the president of the Foundation for the Children of Haiti where she oversaw the work at the school, the hospital, the orphanage, overseas sponsorship and other projects.
She worked closely with the president, gaining valuable insight on how to run an organization in Haiti that focuses on children. Shortly after starting the organization Melissa secured funds from individual sponsors to start a sponsorship program. The organization has been steadily growing. All members involved in management are volunteers so that funds can be channeled directly to meet the need of the children in the program. It is with great hope that we look forward to the future and the growth of this organization!