KIDS CONNECTION HAITI
Kids Connection Haiti (KCH) is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. KCH was founded to help underprivileged youth in Haiti by creating life changing opportunities. Where lots of wonderful organizations help orphaned, abandoned and poor little kids, many older ones -teenagers and young adults- have no way out of poverty. Focusing on post-orphanage services, KCH provides support for the next step in life and by doing so we offer a unique, innovative program that will help young Haitians close the gap between childhood and independent, adult life.
KCH believes in the potential of young adults and especially acknowledges the difficult position those youth are in, after they leave their orphanage. This is the moment that will decide whether they will be a gangster or a carpenter, a beggar or a banker. KCH empowers young adults to make the right choice, giving them the chance to create more stable, hopeful and financially independent futures.
The KCH local program coordinator is located in Port-au-Prince, the capital of Haiti, and provides the young men and women with mentoring, financial support and follow up services. Every KCH student is required to give back to the community by helping others in need through organized volunteer work. The KCH students attend various levels of education; university, high school, and vocational education, as well as micro-business training. The program consits of a wide range of support;
- completion of formal education;
- life skills training;
- long-term mentoring;
- emergency support;
- professional career development training;
- social safety net.
To empower orphans in Haiti to become contributing, self-sufficient members within their communities through education, life skills training, community service, mentorship, and career development.
KCH was founded by Astrid De Vries in 2010 who lived and worked in Haiti from 1998 to 2002. While serving as sponsorship coordinator and mentor for older youth at an orphanage, she became acutely aware of the barriers to economic independence for orphans. After leaving Haiti in 2002, Astrid remained involved, as the children she knew became young adults. She learned of the emerging problems that they faced – problems related to pursuing an education, finding a job, and creating a positive, secure and stable future. To help address these issues, Astrid assessed the feasibility of post-orphanage support in the post-earthquake context and founded KCH.
Haiti has the highest percentage of orphans of any country in the Western Hemisphere. Kids Connection Haiti was founded especially for the older orphans. They are too old for shelters, too young to do it all alone, and in desperate need of support. KCH offers them tools for a more stable, more secure future. A future of poverty, crime or prostitution does not have to be their destiny – we can offer them the chance to change their future. Currently, 25 students are enrolled in the program. Our team consists of volunteers only. Dedicated and passionate to impact the lives of post-orphans.