Pierre Payen Residents In Need of Boca Grande Friendship Village

Front row: Nancy Lorden, Iliene Corcoran, Patricia Chapman, Susan Jansen, Mary Jo Wilson, Fr. Carosella, Ed Reefe Back row: Tom Lorden, Ray Corcoran, Louise Scott, Ben Scott, Steve Jansen, George Castrucci, Jack Harms

COCONUT CREEK, Fla. (Feb. 19, 2010) – Most of the people in Pierre Payen, Ravine Seche, Haiti are living in overcrowded mud huts with thatch roofs. Others have settled in concrete structures with rusted and leaky roofs. The Boca Grande Friendship Village committee wants to improve the living conditions for them by funding the development of a new community.

The need for homes in Pierre Payen is tremendous for the approximately 100 families who struggle to survive there. Households generally consist of about eight to 10 people, and these figures may be greater now that many have fled Port-au-Prince since the Jan. 12 earthquake and migrated toward rural areas. Pierre Payan is located just a few hours northwest of the capital.     

Currently, the area does not have a sanitation system. The children in Pierre Payen do not have access to good schools. The facilities currently used for schooling are considered unsafe structures, and are not conducive for learning. Most children in the village eat about one meal per day, and clean water is unavailable.

The Boca Grande Friendship Village committee members want to chage that. They are inviting all of the island’s residents to their first fundraiser, where neighbors can take the opportunity to join the group and establish a community for the families living in this rural coastal village.

“This is our island’s chance to provide safe homes for a large group of families in Pierre Payen,” said Ben Scott, chairman of the Boca Grande Hope For Haitians Committee. “Some of our friends have already pledged toward the village. At the event, we are not only raising money to buy homes, we will also be purchasing fruit trees, farm animals and we need to build a vocational school in the village. The goal is to help these families generate income and be able to provide for their families and their community.”

The committee’s plans call for a village consisting of safe housing and sanitation, potable water, a vocational school, a community center, nutritious food resources and a solar-powered electrical system. Food For The Poor has developed more than a dozen villages like this one in Haiti, with an additional 30 fishing villages developed along the country’s coast.

The Boca Grande Friendship Village’s first fundraising event will be held on Tuesday, March 9, 2010, at the historic Power House at Boca Bay Pass Club. The cocktail reception begins at 6 p.m. with guest speaker Angel Aloma, Executive Director of Food For The Poor.
The Boca Grande Friendship Village Chairpersons are Ben and Louise Scott, and the committee members are Rev. Jerome Carosella, George and Lois Castrucci, Patricia Chapman, Ray and Iliene Corcoran, Charlie and Florita Field, Jack and Donna Harms, Stephen and Susan Jensen, Tom and Nancy Lorden, Ed and Nora Lee Reefe, Vince and Judy Shaw, Bruce and Barbara Stirling, and David and Mary Jo Wilson. For more information about the event, and to RSVP please contact Kathy Leggatt at (954) 427.2222, ext. 6646, and visit www.foodforthepoor.org/bocagrande.
Food For The Poor, the largest international relief and development organization in the United States, does much more than feed millions of hungry poor in 17 countries of the Caribbean and Latin America. This interdenominational Christian agency provides 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 percent of all donations going directly to programs that help the poor. For more information, please visit www.foodforthepoor.org.

Aimee Vignola
Public Relations
(954) 427-2222 x 6079