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Dear World Help Haiti Update, and Haiti Read-a-thon

January 18, 2010

Eddie has launched DearWorldHelpHaiti.com please share this valuable resource and aid clearinghouse site, and check in often.

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Sam had a chance to help Eddie pull the prints that you will see on the site. He made several, and we are talking about who to give them too, and ways he can be of service. I am trying to focus the conversation around what a five year old in Haiti might want/need to feel safe and happy that we can help provide.  This will be a historical marker from his childhood I imagine. I want to set a premise for how we react to such events, process them, experience them, and involve ourselves in ways that utilize our strengths and gifts. Eddie is an amazing model for this in what she is doing, and how she is involving her village.

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Piti piti, zwazo fe nich li.

-Little by little the bird makes his nest. Haitian proverb

Along the same lines of empowering others to help I am thinking about a read-a-thon for Haiti in my reading classes where I teach. Many of my students who are often described as reluctant readers have limited economic resources. At the same time many of them come from countries and situations that connect them even more deeply to the humanitarian crisis in Haiti.  I thought I might share a reading from Edwidge Danticat’s Breath, Eyes, Memory that I am reading now. and invite them to participate in this read-a-thon idea. For every book they undertake to read outside of class (we will establish guidelines around what that means) and they can provide some evidence of doing, I will donate a book to a Haiti relief organization that we agree on as a class.  I would involve other teachers in the idea as potential sponsors too.

I want them to read for the joy of it, the power of transcending their own imitations. In so doing, they are helping someone else to do the same, or at least to have the joy of a good book. If you my readers out there have any great suggestions for book publishers, clearing houses etc that might want to help sponsor the kids’ efforts with new books for Haiti let me know. Or if you have other ideas.. I am in the thinking stage of this plan.

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