The Hotes Foundation has conducted more than 30 missions to Haiti following disasters like the landslides and flooding experienced after Tropical Storms Hanna, Gustav, & Fay, as well as Hurricane Ike, following the devastating effects of the Haiti Earthquake in 2010, and most recently providing disaster relief in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew. While Richard Hotes and Hotes Foundation volunteers carried out disaster relief work, going and giving direct aid to the poorest of the poor, including building a 500 home community for earthquake survivors, it became apparent that the current aid system was failing the people of Haiti. The established system of organizations and NGOs was bent on maintaining and increasing the level of poverty. Their system relies on the suffering of a nation, to continue to generate billions of dollars in donations, with no accountability or oversight, resulting in an infinitesimally small percentage being spent on showcasing to highlight and exaggerate the work supposedly being done. In short, the good intentions behind billions in donations to the world aid system were and still are having virtually no positive effect, while the negative effects are increasingly visible.
Having seen the magnitude and depths to which these organizations and NGO’s will go to ensure a steady income from donations, Richard Hotes sought to prove what could be done when good intentions were not given in the way of donations, but in working extremely long hours, in the unforgiving heat of Haiti, side-by-side with the people of Haiti to raise a village out of poverty.
While the failure of the world aid system to make even a semblance of progress in the fight against poverty is a naked and sad truth, the Hotes Foundation seeks to bring hope for those in extreme poverty by setting the example for the way aid and philanthropy ought to be conducted. Hotes Foundation programs in Haiti, always involve taking the poorest people, volunteers taking initiative and working hard along side those in need, exemplifying the manner in which real help gets to the poorest of the poor, and ultimately leads people out of poverty.
Read more about the Hotes Foundation’s work being done in Haiti below.
The Hotes Foundation feeds all of the women and children of the Lake Azuei village one complete meal, five days a week. A cooking staff, composed of women from the village, and hired and paid by the Hotes Foundation, makes a unique, nutritious, and tasty meal each day. Much of the produce used in the dishes is grown locally in the village’s garden. In order to ensure the program’s success from day one, we brought in a custom designed kitchen and a large hurricane-proof WeatherPort cafeteria structure.
We fully supply the village with water for drinking, cooking, and farming activities. Due to Lake Azuei being brackish, none of the ground water anywhere near the village is usable, so water must be brought in by truck. Due to the efforts of the Hotes Foundation, the residents of the village have gone from walking miles on foot to get water, to being able to retrieve potable water from one of our installed water reservoirs in the village.
The Hotes Foundation operates a full-time daycare facility for all of the village’s children ages 0-4 years old. Children in the daycare program get nutritional breakfasts, close monitoring for medical issues, daily educational classes, and great opportunities to play inside the air-conditioned daycare or in the covered outdoor playground. The daycare service is designed to help women in the village work to support their families financially.
Since the beginning of our Haiti Operations in 2014, the Hotes Foundation and hired Haitian staff (from the village) have worked together to build acres of gardens and farmland. The food raised and grown is used by the feeding program. The Hotes Foundation constructed a 30,000 gallon cistern in the village to collect rainwater for growing crops. The agricultural program in Haiti has been a huge success and empowered women in the village.
The Hotes Foundation employs 4 certified Haitian teachers to educate 40 of the hardest working villagers of Lake Azuei. The curriculum teaches adults reading, writing, and math. Prior to enrolling in the educational program, the majority of these adult students were not able to write their own names. The students have progressed remarkably since the program’s start in June of 2016.
After operating several pop-up clinics in the village, the Hotes Foundation decided there was a great need for medical care and decided to build a permanent clinic. Since June of 2015, the clinic has operated to take care of and provide medical services to the entire village. For those cases where individuals have a medical need that cannot be treated by the clinic or require urgent medical attention, our wonderful Haitian staff personally takes the patient to a hospital. The Hotes Foundation covers all medical costs for these individuals and does not charge for the medical clinic or any of our other programs.
The Hotes Foundation employs and pays over 60 Haitians for the implementation and managing of day to day programs, agriculture and farming, meal preparation and cooking, garbage service, water delivery, janitorial service, daycare, and security. Investing in local employees has great long term effects as employees invest their earnings in houses, livestock, education and more to help raise the level of the village out of poverty.
WOMEN'S SOCCER LEAGUE
In 2015, the Hotes Foundation operated a women-only soccer league and tournament in the Lake Azuei village. The program helped to counteract the culture of misogyny and has led women in the village to be increasingly recognized as equals to their husbands. The newly-discovered female athletes from this program, who had no opportunity to express their athletic ability previously, continue to practice and play together every week.
The installation of showers and toilet systems was one of the first programs we introduced to the entire Lake Azuei village.
Local Hotes Foundation employees ensure these facilities remain clean and stocked every day. As a result of this successful program, a village that once practiced all-open defecation now benefits from greatly increased hygiene.
The Hotes Foundation created an activity club for the parents of children enrolled in the education program. The activity club holds seminars multiple times a week to educate the people of Lake Azuei village about diseases, hygiene, finances, agriculture, good parenting, and more. We encourage volunteering by local Haitians (as well as people from the US and abroad) and as a result, individuals from Lake Azuei village and the surrounding area have put in tens of thousands of hours of volunteer hours doing things like improving local roads, expanding farms, picking up trash, planting trees, and assisting with disaster relief to other areas of Haiti.
LATEST HAITI PROJECTS
- This Christmas, Hotes Foundation volunteers purchased and hand-delivered hundreds of presents to all of the children in Lake Azuei Village, Haiti! Watch the joy of Christmas being brought to the poorest of the poor!Read More
- Happy Thanksgiving from Haiti! Last week, Lake Azuie villagers celebrated Thanksgiving in Haitian style! Over 600 people attended this year’s festivities, which included great food, live music, and a night of dancing! The village cooks poured their hearts into creating a feast fit for a king - roasted turkey, mashed…Read More
- Zilia Gallete and her team of Haitian volunteers picked more than 75 lb of eggplant at this week’s harvest! Built and maintained by Hotes Foundation volunteers and Haitian staff, the multi-acre farm produces a wide range of vegetables for the feeding program every week. The cooking staff, composed of women…Read More
- Just two days after Hurricane Matthew struck Haiti, the Hotes Foundation team was on the ground. After seeing the severity of the destruction and the usual lack of any help being provided, our team, led by Richard Hotes, went to work, and within just a couple days had delivered weeks'…Read More
- It’s high noon on another sun-soaked, 95-degree day in Haiti, and the playground is packed. Three-year-old Richie puts on his sunglasses and hops behind the wheel of a metal toy car. His classmates are going crazy today- jumping off benches, flying off the spinning wheel, dangling from the jungle gym. Richie’s…Read More