“It’s a heartbreaking day to look back at what happened a year ago in Haiti – and during the year since. A day for silence, reflection, prayer, and working to do what we can.” This is a reflection from Kent Annan’s Internet blog on Jan. 12, 2011 – the one–year anniversary of the earthquake in Haiti.
Kent Annan, author of After Shock (January 2011) and Following Jesus through the Eye of the Needle (2009), is co–director of Haiti Partners, a nonprofit organization focused on building schools and training teachers in Haiti. A graduate of Princeton Theological Seminary, he began working in Haiti in 2003 after previously working with refugee ministries in western Europe, Albania and Kosovo. He now travels to Haiti regularly from Florida, where he lives with his wife and two young children.
He also is the U.S. sponsor of the Gustave Cadet family, whose son Mike was diagnosed with acute leukemia in the days following the earthquake and evacuated to the United States. It was Mr. Annan’s plea for help through Princeton Theological Seminary that resulted in Pinnacle Presbyterian Church’s connection with Gustave, Mike and their family.
We bring Kent Annan to speak on Tuesday, March 15, about both facts and myths of conditions in Haiti, and of his experiences since the earthquake. His stories and observations are compelling. He says, “Haiti does desperately need help, but we can’t just do it for them. Of all that has been lost, broken, shattered in the last year, what cannot be taken away is the deep desire I see in Haiti of people who want to improve their country themselves.”
Additionally, we will have Gustave Cadet and a panel of people from local organizations who have traveled to and worked in Haiti in the past year. They and Kent Annan will answer questions and provide their observations. Included are:
Christa Brelsford - ASU student who was working with Heads Together Haiti, a community literacy program, and lost a leg during the earthquake. Saved by co-workers including the co-director of Haiti Partners, Christa has returned to ASU and has founded the charitable organization "Christa's Angels".
Christine Ellis – a local businesswoman and Haitian expatriate who was instrumental in founding Haiti Disaster Relief of Arizona, a nonprofit organization that has been sending relief supplies to Haiti since the earthquake
Kathi Juntunen – former high–tech businesswoman and co–founder of Chances 4 Children, a nonprofit that provides financial and strategic support for orphanages and schools in Haiti. She traveled to Haiti 15 times in 2010 bringing supplies to children and assessing their needs and caregivers.
Gustave Cadet – the Haitian who with his son Mike was evacuated to Miami and then Phoenix after the earthquake to allow Mike to be treated for acute leukemia at Phoenix Children’s Hospital.
Hear Kent Annan discuss “One Year Later” from 7–8:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 15, in the Chapel. This free program is co–sponsored by Pinnacle Promise Haiti Initiative and the Pinnacle Theological Center.
For questions or information, call the church office at 480.585.9448.