Haiti-Maine Partnership

PARTNERSHIP: Haiti – Maine Parish Partnership

St. Simon St. Jude School, Duny in partnership with St. Luke’s Cathedral, Portland

Our partnership in Duny began in February of 2009.  Over the years, we have visited many times, close to once every year.
We collaborate to support the basic needs of the school children in Duny, Haiti and are building relationships with people in the community.

This photo shows the kitchen attached to the food storage building and a young student walking to eat with her classmate.

THE LUNCH PROGRAM- Quarters for Haiti

  • In 2010 when we first started our quarters program our goal was to send $500/mth to cover the cost of food at the school. Due to inflation, in 2017 that same $500 has a purchasing power of $483 in the US and $369 in Haiti. In other words, inflation in Haiti is rising at a much faster rate than in the United States.
  • We have made adjustments to get back to that 2010 level $500 worth of Haitian goods. Accounting for inflation we need to send $711, as of November 2017 we send $700.


We feel strongly that supporting education is essential to development and opportunity in Haiti.
We began with plans to build a new school building. Construction of the new school was completed in 2014.
With nine classrooms and one office, they are able to educate children in grades kindergarten through sixth grade.

Desks for the teachers were built this year from locally sourced oak. This is the first time teachers in Duny have had desks.

Students working in their classrooms.

The teachers and students work with limited supplies.
There are about 105 children that attend this elementary school program. Most children are only able to attend 2 to 3 years of school.
High school education is not available in Duny.  Very few students can afford high school, but if they do pursue it, they have to go elsewhere.
There are 10 teachers and an administrator at the school.  The salaries of 8 teachers and the administrator are funded through the Haiti Education Foundation which is independent of St. Luke’s partnership in Duny. St Luke’s Cathedral funds 2 teachers salaries.

Wisly Clairis continues as the Head of the School and Pere Goursse is the Priest in Charge.

Regular Sunday Church Services are held in one of the classrooms. In spite of the school being the strongest and largest building in Duny,  attendance has been known to overflow the space.


THIS YEAR twelve students receive assistance to purchase books, Uniforms and TO COVER the cost of tuition.

Sélène (center) Scholarship recipient

Jordany (center) and Islove (right) scholarship recipients

Richard Scholarship recipient

Students are learning good hygiene for disease prevention.


Water pressure from the mountain wellhead is strong enough to reach the school 1.5 miles away.  This helps the cooks at the school prepare lunch.

It is also important for children’s hand washing to keep them healthy.

This is a lesson in hand washing before meals to protect from cholera.


This new flagpole was part of our infrastructure improvement this fall. During morning exercise, students salute the flag each day before class and in the evening when they leave school.

The newly repaired wellhead in the mountains above Duny.  A Haitian government branch headed up this project in early 2017.  It replaced a heavily damaged concrete structure that had been eroded by several hurricanes


Funds raised at St. Luke’s for our partners in Duny have gone to these projects.
  • Ongoing lunch program- including increase due to inflation
  • A cook for lunch and a man to bring wood or charcoal to the school for the lunch preparation
  • Desks for the Teachers
  • 2 teachers salaries- including the increase to meet new minimum wage set by the government.
  • Scholarships for numerous children






Money currently donated to the Cathedral Church of St. Luke designated to Duny helps the St. Simon/St. Jude School in many ways.
  • Lunches for students are estimated to cost 25 cents a day per child.
  • Scholarships for individual children.  A $100 annual donation pays for tuition, books, and a uniform for one child.
  • If you prefer to direct your donation to a particular effort listed above please indicate this on the check, otherwise simply indicate DUNY in the memo field and the Haiti Committee in partnership with the leadership in Duny will make the best decision possible for the good of the whole community.
  • General hurricane relief and structural maintenance of the facility.

Please come to the next meeting to collaborate on solutions or contact our cochairs, Karin Draper at draper.karin@gmail.com  or Meredith Cough at meredith.cough@gmail.com 


Haiti The Aftershocks of History
by Laurent Dubois


Our partnership in Duny began in February of 2009. Since then we hace collaborated to support the basic needs of the school children in Duny, Haiti and are building relationships with people in the community.


An Agricultural village in the hills west of Port au Prince near Trouin.  The primary language spoken is Creole.


Haiti is one of the most densely populated and poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere. An estimated 80 percent of the population of 7.9 million people lives in abject poverty. Less than half the population is literate and only one quarter of the population has access to safe water. Only one-fifth of the land is arable, and the country is 98% deforested. The per-capita income is less than one U.S. dollar per day. Yet, despite crushing poverty, the Haitian people are known to have a warm, celebratory, and dignified spirit – devoted to the reality of a God who created, sustains, and loves the world.