The Hope For Haitians Committee Provides Haitians with a Fresh Start-in-Life

*NOTE TO REPORTERS: Interviews are available with Tom Lorden, Pat Bachrodt, Peter Roche (Event Co-Chairmen), William Clancy (a Geneva resident that recently traveled to Haiti with Food For The Poor, and is a committee member), and Angel Aloma (Food For The Poor's Executive Director).

ROCKFORD, Ill. (July 31, 2008) – The Hope for Haitians Committee and Food For The Poor are honored to announce the seventh annual event, Catch a Tropical Breeze, will be held Saturday, August 23 at the Rockford Country Club. The Event Chairmen and Committee Members would like to invite you to attend.

Proceeds from last year’s gala, An Enchanted Evening, were used to establish the Rockford Friendship Village in Prolonge, Cap-Haitien, Haiti. Through the construction of 50 homes, 25 sanitation units, 2 artesian wells, a community center, 3 tilapia ponds, and a solar panel light, many can now call the Rockford Friendship Village home. The goal for this year’s Catch a Tropical Breeze is to expand the village by constructing an additional 50 homes, 25 more sanitation units, one more lifesaving artesian well, and to implement a feeding program for the severely malnourished children, elderly and families of the village. 

Haiti’s devastating food crisis recently captured the hearts of Americans when the Associated Press reported that “mud cookies,” made from clay, bouillon, oil and salt were being eaten by desperately hungry Haitians. These mud cookies have unfortunately become the only means of quelling a child’s hunger pangs for many poor mothers. The Rockford Feeding Center Project, in Prolonge, Cap-Haitien provides hot and nutritious meals to impoverished children, seniors and families. Recipients will consume a healthy diet of rice, beans, vegetables, starch, pork and chicken. 

Catch a Tropical Breeze will feature dinner, entertainment by the Jodi Beach Trio, and an extraordinary silent auction. Auction items to include art and collectible items from Caribbean and Latin American countries, trips to exotic locations, jewelry, and dining packages for some of Chicago’s most desirable restaurants.

Reverend Duken Augustin, of Cap-Haitien, Haiti, will be the guest speaker at the 2008 Rockford gala. He is overseeing the Rockford Friendship Village, and works alongside Food For The Poor to improve the lives of the destitute in Haiti.

Tom Lorden, Pat Bachrodt, and Peter Roche serve as the Event Co-Chairmen for Catch a Tropical Breeze. Lorden, Bachrodt, and Roche traveled with Food For The Poor on a pilgrimage to Haiti, where they witnessed firsthand the devastating living conditions of the poor.

“The need in Haiti seemed overwhelming until I witnessed the organization, dedication and safeguards Food For The Poor has in place,” said William Clancy, a committee member and event sponsor, who traveled to Haiti in June 2008 on a Food For The Poor pilgrimage. “The progress being made is inspiring as is Food For The Poor’s focus on helping the people become self sufficient over time. Previously I felt the only actions I was capable of, was to pray and donate. After connecting with the situation I know I must spread the word by telling others of what I saw and experienced. The pictures I took will help, and the witness I share will help bring others to help. I must speak on behalf of those who are in dire need, and those who are in-country trying their best to help.”

Committee members include: Pat Bachrodt, Reverend David Beauvais, Kathy Caruana, William Clancy, Mike Delany, Brian and Missy Hand, Tom and Nancy Lorden, Bob McLaughlin, Al and Terry Provenzano, Patti Rangel, Gerry and Judy Risch, Pete Roche, Jody Schumacher, and Jerry Weber.

Catch a Tropical Breeze sponsors, include: AAA Quality Limo; Al and Terry Provenzano Charitable Foundation; CMFI Group; Comerica Bank; Crowe Chizek & Co. LLC; Focus Financial Advisors; Holy Fmaily Church; Kelley Williamson Company; Lindgren, Callihan, Van Osdol; Lorden Charitable Foundation; Missy and Brian Hand; Morrissey Law Offices; Mr. and Mrs. Michael Delany; Mary Lou and Bob McLauglin; Papa John's - Ralph Baudhuin Foundation; Powmet, Inc.; R.C. and Rhonda Pottinger; Rebecca Dunsworth Newton; Resource Dealer Group, Inc.; Risch Family Foundation; Riverside Community Bank; Savant Capital; Scandroli Coast Co; The Lou Bachrodt Auto Group; The Peter Roche Family; Thomas and Lesley Killoren; Verizon Wireless; Warner Specialized Petroleum; and William and Catherine Clancy.

To purchase gala tickets and/or make a donation please contact Patti Rangel by telephone at (815) 962-1214 or by e-mail at Additional Catch a Tropical Breeze gala information is posted on Food For The Poor’s Web site at

Food For The Poor, the largest provider of aid to Haiti, feeds and shelters millions of destitute children and their families in Haiti. Through its expansive network of island-wide distribution hubs, Food For The Poor supports thousands of partners in feeding the poorest of the poor. Together with its donors and missionaries, Food For The Poor continues to fight the battle against starvation in Haiti.

Food For The Poor, the second largest international relief and development organization in the nation, does much more than simply feed the millions of hungry poor in 16 countries of the Caribbean and Latin America. We provide emergency relief assistance, clean water, medicines, educational materials, homes, support for orphans and the aged, skills training and micro-enterprise development assistance, with more than 96% of all donations going directly to programs that help the poor. For additional information, please visit the Web site


Jennifer Leigh Oates
Food for the Poor
(954) 427-2222 x 6054

Tom Lorden
Event Co-Chairman
(815) 964-1904