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Oak Park Reminds Us

March 2004

Yesterday, Grassroots and Grantmakers Without Borders organized a conference call between over 20 U.S. funders and the very same Pierre Esperance mentioned in our previous post. The depth of interest in the human rights situation in Haiti was gratifying. Pierre summarized his view of the current situation and outlined his organization’s plan to respond to a national human rights emergency.

Over the past six weeks, thousands of you have taken a peek at Grassroots Journal as we have made a modest attempt to be sure that our Haitian partners have some voice in the international discussion of their country. We’ve received a lot of feedback on our efforts, much of it very supportive. Some people continue insist that we have been too ready to overlook the nefarious role of the U.S. in changing regimes in Haiti. Amidst all of that and the difficult news each day from Haiti, the following note arrived today from a teacher at a middle school in Oak Park, IL.



Thanks for sending the video and information. The students have now raised $90.00, enough for two pigs! We are not stopping and this has encouraged them to do some fund raising. The fact that we are watching and hearing about Haiti on the news everyday helps to make the students more terested in helping the people in Haiti. I will try to attach photos of the students working on the pigs.



There are still a lot of Haitians struggling every day to live. At Grassroots, we wish to get to the political roots of the crisis, but we also want to do something to help people work and live through it. Students in Oak Park, Illinois have done just that in a small, but important, way. I hope that, when the dust settles, we will all be able to say as much about ourselves.

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