Press Releases

PRESS RELEASE 21st July 2014

 

W. K. KELLOGG FOUNDATION GRANT OF $200,000 to SOUL OF HAITI MODEL FARM

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The W.K Kellogg Foundation has granted $200,000 to a Model Farm operated by the Soul of Haiti Foundation in southern Haiti. The Christine Model Farm is a farm-to-cooperative programme established by the Soul of Haiti Foundation in 2010 which was created with a view to developing a centre of excellence for farming practices in Haiti. It comprises of a Commercial Farm, a Research & Experimental Facility, a Training Centre and a Seed Bank. By introducing and demonstrating best agricultural methods on the farm and to the wider community, Soul of Haiti hope to create sustainable livelihoods, for both its own farm workers and local independent operators in this area, alleviating the extreme poverty in this area. The Irish company Country Crest has been a partner in this project since the outset.

Neil O’ Leary, the Soul of Haiti Director who heads up this project is delighted with the grant. “Thanks to the generosity of the Kellogg Foundation, and the ongoing support from Alix Cantave, its Program Manager for Haiti, we can now employ skilled agronomists who can work within the farm, capturing information particularly on our experimental crops, setting up structured courses for the local farmers and monitoring and evaluating our effectiveness.  Sharon Dagg, Soul of Haiti’s COO says that “Apart from good farming practice, the courses will include, general management tools, literacy skills, budget planning, nutrition, health care and product supply. Similarly, as farmers move through the program and begin to master the new skills, Soul of Haiti will facilitate open dialogue on the issues affecting them and their families in order to identify potential community development opportunities. Soul of Haiti’s hope is to create a model of farming and training that is replicable across Haiti”.

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), was founded in 1930 as an independent, private foundation by breakfast cereal pioneer, Will Keith Kellogg, and is among the largest philanthropic foundations in the United States. Guided by the belief that all children should have an equal opportunity to thrive, WKKF works with communities to create conditions for vulnerable children so they can realize their full potential in school, work and life.

 

PRESS RELEASE – 28th May 2014  

 

W. K. KELLOGG FOUNDATION DONATION OF $390,000 to SOUL OF HAITI ORPHANAGE

 

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The W.K Kellogg Foundation has agreed to donate $390,000 to an orphanage managed by the Soul of Haiti in southern Haiti. The orphanage, Oeuvre St. Francois is in a village called Madame Bernard on the island of Ile a Vache and is home to 70 children, 30 of whom are physically or mentally disabled.

It is administered by a Franciscan nun, Sr. Flora who also manages the village primary school where close to 400 children are taught daily. In 2008 Directors of the Soul of Haiti Foundation visited Œuvre St François D’Assise Orphanage & School. Upon seeing the poor living conditions of the children these Irish men and women, finalists in the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year, knew that despite the Foundations core focus being on developing sustainable communities & livelihoods, this would have to be taken on as a humanitarian project. Since then the Soul of Haiti Foundation and its Donors, have been the orphanage’s principal sponsors, recently employing an Irish woman, Ailish O’Reilly, to offer full time on the ground management support to the orphanage.

Michael Cullen, CEO of Beacon Hospital & a Director of the Soul of Haiti Foundation said that ‘Receiving this grant from the Kellogg Foundation truly validates the work that Soul of Haiti has put into Oeuvre St. Francois over the past 6 years and will go a long way in easing the financial burden Sr. Flora carries on a daily basis. Alix Cantave the WK Kellogg Foundation Program Officer for Haiti, has already been a massive support to Sr. Flora, only last year providing Soul of Haiti with $60,000 to ensure that each disabled child was fitted with an appropriate wheelchair. It is just incredible to see the change that this has made to these children’s lives.’

According to Soul of Haiti’s Country Director, Damien Meaney, the $390,000 will be used over the next 4 years to support the orphanage costs and salaries and will allow the charity concentrate its efforts on more long-term projects to support the orphanage and the island as a whole. ‘The Soul of Haiti Foundation’s ethos is actually based on assisting Haitian enterprise and thanks to this support from The Kellogg Foundation, we can stop focussing on the short term needs of the children and can turn our attention to helping establish small enterprise within the orphanage and on the island; creating employment for the older children and a sustainable income for the Oeuvre St Francois’.

The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), was founded in 1930 as an independent, private foundation by breakfast cereal pioneer, Will Keith Kellogg, and is among the largest philanthropic foundations in the United States. Guided by the belief that all children should have an equal opportunity to thrive, WKKF works with communities to create conditions for vulnerable children so they can realize their full potential in school, work and life.