Students are far more likely to succeed academically when they have stability in their home lives.
According to a study at California State University, students who reported food insecurity, the fear of homelessness, or both, often experienced physical and mental challenges that resulted lower academic achievement.
This is why we place as equal an importance on our students lives outside the classroom walls as what's happening within them. Our Community Center is at the heart of those services, giving our students a place to study and relax.
Wadeloveson Smith is one of our sponsored students. He joined our program after his father passed away and his family could no longer afford his tuition. Wadeloveson is currently in the 5th grade and and has a GPA of 8.5, which is the equivalent of a B+ on the Haitian grade scale.
Last week, Wadeloveson was sent home from school because his uniform was stained and he didn't have a clean one. Given that children play and the dusty climate of many of our student's homes and commutes, uniforms often get dirty.
We didn't want Wadeloveson's education to be constantly interrupted because of this. Our program manager, Joissaint, purchased new school uniforms (along with other household items that Wadeloveson needed) and had them tailored.
We want to ensure that no child's education suffers because of something so minor as a dirty uniform. Which is why we constantly check in with our students and are committed to providing them with the resources they need so they can focus on their studies.
At Clean Hands for Haiti, we like to think of ourselves as a family. We look out for each other and most importantly, for our students, on a day to day basis. Founder Ray Abellard's mother still lives in Port au Prince and has taken an active role with our students. She has Wadeloveson over to her house every day to ensure that he has at least one hearty meal before bed.