Mortel Family Charitable Foundation

The Foundation serves the economically, intellectually, and socially deprived children and adults of Haiti. The mission of our schools and programs is to educate and care for the poorest of the poor of the region.
Mar 10, 2011

21st Century Technology and Skills

Classmate PC
Classmate PC

Dear Supporters,

 

Thanks to your continued support, our project continues to grow both in Haiti and in Palmyra.  Together we are creating opportunities for students that could not have even been imagined a few years ago. 

 

In Haiti, the Les Bons Samaritains computer room has some of the most innovated education technology seen in any classroom.  We have purchased Intel’s laptops known as the Classmate PC.  This is an amazing product that is perfectly suited for our project and the challenging environment of a developing country.  I encourage you to check out the video links in this update that show the Classmate PC’s features and capabilities.  In addition to the laptops, an interactive white board brings amazing and engaging educational experiences to the students and connects them to the world in a way that blackboards never could.

 

In Palmyra, we are applying 21st century skills through our wiki project. Tony Wagner, a Harvard academic who studies change, leadership and education has identified 21st century skills students and leaders will need to thrive in an ever-changing global community.   

  • Critical Thinking and Problem Solving
  • Collaboration across Networks and Leading by Influence
  • Agility and Adaptability
  • Initiative and Entrepreneurialism
  • Effective Oral and Written Communication
  • Accessing and Analyzing Information
  • Curiosity and Imagination

 

Our Palmyra students have regularly applied these skills from this project’s beginnings in 2008 and those skills continue to be applied today.   As our Palmyra students grow in these skills, they will be able to foster these skills in their peers in Haiti.  What an amazing time we live in!

 

Your continued support is appreciated.  There continues to be a need to make more of this technology available to our students in Haiti.  With 20 computers serving nearly 600 students, we can increase the opportunity for more students to access this technology with more computers and training.

 

On Wednesday, March 16th, you have an opportunity to stretch your donation to our project through a GlobalGiving Matching offer.  Starting at 12:01 am EST, GlobalGiving will match any donation of $1000 or less to our project by 30% until their matching fund pool of $75,000 runs out.

Interactive White Board
Interactive White Board
The Potential of 21st Century Technology and Skill
The Potential of 21st Century Technology and Skill

Links:

Feb 22, 2011

Build Us Back

Combating Hunger in Haiti
Combating Hunger in Haiti

Dear supporters,

Songs have a way of inspiring action.  As we recently passed the one-year anniversary of the earthquake in Haiti, we were inspired by the lyrics of a song written to commemorate that event.  We believe those lyrics exemplify what we are doing through your continued support.

 

We’ve been crumbled, we’ve been crushed
City walls have turned to dust
Broken hands and blistered feet
We walk for miles to find relief

When the thief takes, when our hopes cave
You build us back
You build us back
When the earth shakes, when the world breaks
You build us back
You build us back
(Build Us Back ~ Newsboys)

 

Thanks to you, we have been building back.  On the Palmyra side of our project, our students have been involved in humanitarian efforts to feed the hungry in Haiti and raise funds to support our technology initiative there.

Recently, we were declared the fourth highest contributor in The Annual Cookie Sale To Combat World Hunger.  Combined with last year’s effort, we have fed over 1,600 Haitians through the sale.  Our students have also been selling sea bean seeds with inspirational pictures and phrases on them to support our work.  We have adopted one of the sea bean quotations as a motto. “Be the change you want to see in the world.” (Mahatma Gandhi)   We are teaching our students in both Palmyra and Haiti to be the generation of change that will make the world a better place.  Our sea beans are also a great symbol of what we are doing.  We are planting seeds of hope through our technology initiative that will bear much fruit.

 In addition to our sea bean sale, we recently created t-shirts for our project that are available for sale online.  Proceeds from the sea bean and t-shirt sales also support our project.

 On the Haiti side of our project, the students continued to make good use of their newly renovated computer room and the new Classmate PCs that you have made possible.  On February 11th, fourteen GlobalGiving staff members put our project’s technology to the test by participating in a SKYPE video conference with our partner school in Haiti (Les Bons Samaritains).  The session lasted nearly 30 minutes and gave both GlobalGiving and Les Bons Samaritains a glimpse into the power and potential behind the technology your contributions are creating.

 Through all these successes, our need for support continues.  The 20 laptops at Les Bons Samaritains are great, but few when put in the perspective of the school’s population of nearly 600 students.  More laptops will make greater educational experiences available for larger number of students at the school.  In addition, technology staffing costs, Internet connectivity costs and ongoing training in the usage of technology continues to require financial support.

 Please mark the date of Tuesday, March 16th 2011, which is a GlobalGiving matching day.  Starting at 12:01am EST, GlobalGiving will match any donation of $1000 or less to our project by 30% until their matching fund pool of $75,000 runs out.

 You do “build us back” with your support.  Thank you.

One of Our Sea Bean Seeds
One of Our Sea Bean Seeds
Our T-Shirt (front)
Our T-Shirt (front)
Our T-Shirt (back)
Our T-Shirt (back)
Our Technology in Action in Haiti
Our Technology in Action in Haiti
Dec 13, 2010

Reflections on 2010

Classmate PCs Arrive
Classmate PCs Arrive

Dear Supporters,

In many regards, 2010 was an extremely difficult year for Haiti.  In January, an earthquake devastated Port au Prince, in the late summer a close brush with a hurricane, in the fall, a cholera epidemic.  It is hard to comprehend the resiliency of the Haitian citizens who continue to have perseverance through such challenges.  Thanks to your support, we offer hope to our peers in Haiti by supplying equal access to education through our Internet wiki project.  Since June you have helped us raise over $14,000 to purchase a classroom set of Classmate PC laptops, which have provided excellent learning opportunities for the students at Les Bons Samaritains School. Since the school has an enrollment of over 600 students, we continue to seek funding for additional laptops to give more access to this wonderful learning resource.  In addition, Internet service, technology staffing, and teacher training continue to require funding for sustainability of our program.  Your continued support is greatly appreciated!

In Palmyra, Pennsylvania, our high school students have been busy creating video blogs to promote our Palmyra-Haiti Wiki project through the help of a local credit union.  Please click the link below to access their latest video.

Our middle school students have been learning about effective web page / wiki design from a professional web page designer at Lebanon Valley College.  The students recently launched an improved wiki as a result of a web page design workshop.   Please click on the link below to access the new Palmyra-Haiti Wiki Project site.

Our humanitarianism also continues as we have raised enough money to feed over 6,000 meals for Haitians through The Annual Cookie Sale to Combat World Hunger.

Please help spread the word about our project, which is offering hope in the midst of Haiti’s great challenges. Together, we are making a difference!

All the best,

Jeff Remington

Project Director

A video blog made by our Palmyra students
A video blog made by our Palmyra students
Our new wiki
Our new wiki

Links:

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