First of all, I’d like to express sincere thanks to everyone for the outpouring of concern throughout the University following news of the massive earthquake in Haiti. Ways in which we might help the hundreds of thousands of people affected by this huge disaster immediately took shape. In an effort to coordinate and consolidate FAU’s outreach to Haiti, the Division of Student Affairs, Konbit Kreyol and Student Government have developed the following plan, in consultation with Food for the Poor, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization based in Coconut Creek that has a long record of rendering humanitarian aid to Haiti:
- Boxes have been set up on all campuses for the collection of clothing suitable for the tropics and non-perishable food items, with special need for the following: pop-top cans of evaporated milk, fish and meat, and bottles of water. Please do not give anything in a can that has to be opened with a can opener. Look for the collection boxes on the Boca Raton campus Breezeway, in Chartwells locations, in Student Government offices on all campuses, and in the following partner campus locations:
Davie Student Union, LA 109, LA 122, HEC 507 and ST 119 (lobby)
SR 119 (Student Affairs)
Treasure Coast Campus
JU 113 (Student Services)
Hours of collection on the Breezeway are 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.; donations may be made at the other locations during normal business hours Monday-Friday. Collections will continue at least until Jan. 29 and possibly beyond that date. Cash and checks will not be accepted at any FAU location.
- The food, milk and water will be turned over to Food for the Poor for delivery to Haiti. The Weppner Center for Civic Engagment and Service will deliver the clothing items to the General Consulate of Haiti, which will handle its transfer to Haiti.
- Volunteers are needed to staff the Breezeway collection point (four per hour) and to separate the food donations from the clothing donations. To place your name on the volunteer schedule, please contact the Weppner Center at 561-297-3607.
- If you would like to make a monetary donation to the relief effort, you can do so on the Food for the Poor website: http://www.foodforthepoor.org/ Go to the “Click Here to Help” link and make a donation in any amount by checking a box. Although the lowest amount that appears on the page is $35, you can make a smaller donation in the “Enter an Amount” box.
In addition to donating funds via Food for the Poor, you can make a contribution through Haitian musician Wyclef Jean’s Yele Haiti Foundation in one of two ways:
- Use your cellphone to text “YELE” to 501501, which will result in an automatic donation of $5 to the Yele Earthquake Fund. The charge will appear on your cellphone bill.
- Visit http://www.yele.org and click on the "Donate" link at the top of the page. This website also provides an address to which you can mail a check.
Free counseling services are available to members of the University community who have been affected by this disaster in any way. Students should contact the FAU Counseling Center. Faculty and staff (including contract employees) seeking counseling support should contact the University’s Employee Assistance Program provider, Horizon Health, by calling1-800-865-3200 or logging onto http://www.horizoncarelink.com; the user ID is Florida Atlantic University and the password is EAP. Click on “My Benefits”and then on “EAP Services.”
“Reflection Banners," where members of the University community can express their feelings about the tragedy, have been set up on the second floor of the Boca Raton Student Union and in the Oasis Lounge area of the Davie Student Union.
Together, we can and will make a difference in helping the people of Haiti cope with this terrible misfortune that has befallen them.
John F. Pritchett