Youths of Aquin to Access the Internet at “Creole Cybercafé”
Press release, Aquin, Haiti, October 21, 2013
The W.K. Kellogg Foundation of Battle Creek, Michigan, USA, has awarded $50,000 to the Haitian Resource Development Foundation to increase access to computer training and athletic activities for youths in Aquin, an historic mid-sized city on Haiti’s southcentral Caribbean coast between Les Cayes and Jacmel. The project will offer free computer instruction and a “Creole Cybercafé” for children’s use and enjoyment during after-school hours. The funds are for equipment, supplies, instructors’ salaries and other necessities over a one-year period.
The Haitian Resource Development Foundation [HRDF] has been active in Aquin for 27 years, attracting a variety of material assets and human resources to the community for health, education, recreation, emergency and disaster preparedness. It recently completed a large vocational-technical school that will contain the classroom and cybercafé and provide a safe, sanitary and supervised environment for Haitian youths from ages approximately 9 to 14.
HRDF’s café will be free to Aquin youths, and will be side-by-side with a modern classroom for structured introduction to the world of computers including internet, social networking, games, keyboard and audio-visual skills. All children using the cybercafé will participate in this education sequence under the guidance and care of qualified instructors.
According to HRDF’s president, Aldy Castor, M.D., “Life in Haiti has become intensely connected to the outside world. Under these conditions, computing is both a survival skill and a way to broaden horizons, so we need to prepare our youths as best we can.”
The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF) was founded in 1930 as an independent, private foundation by breakfast cereal pioneer, Will Keith Kellogg. It is among the largest American philanthropic foundations and works throughout the United States and internationally. Special emphasis is on places with high concentration of poverty and where children face significant barriers to success. The Foundation has supported projects in selected Haitian communities for several years.