The Haiti Project has been working in partnership with a small rural community called Jeannette.
Location: Jeannette is located in the south-western peninsula of Haiti. It is 70 miles west of the capital, Port-au-Prince. Like many rural regions, Jeannette is more of an area than an actual town — consistenting of five zones, best described as neighborhoods. These zones are Jeannette, Tibekan, Demarot, Corrail, and The economy is primarily based on agriculture, with many families growing their own food. At one time, this region also produced excellent coffee beans, but decayed infrastructure interfered with bringing these to market. Singing Rooster Coffee has grown out of an earlier Haiti Project initiative to promote economic development and self sustainability. Visit SingingRooster.org to learn more about how this successful social enterprise organization worked with Haitian coffee cooperatives to improve growing practices, build self-sustaining businesses and produce great coffee. By selling Singing Rooster coffee, the Haiti Project supports Haitian farmers and also benefits financially, as a portion of each bag sold comes back the Project. You can also find beautiful Haitian Art at the Singing Rooster website.
St Marc’s Episcopal School grew from a shared concern for the future of the village. Haitian Priest, Octave LaFontant and Jeannette’s parents expressed the desire for quality education for their children. They invited a group of American Episcopalians who were looking for opportunities to live into their Baptismal Covenant to become partner their partners. That covenant, “to seek and serve Christ in all persons loving our neighbor as ourselves; strive for justice and peace among all people and respect the dignity of every human being” (Book of Common Prayer) continues to be the foundation of this relationship.
Religion: The congregation at St. Marc’s Episcopal Church is served by Priest in Charge The Rev. Pere Jean Lenord Quatorze. The Episcopal Bishop of Haiti, The Rt. Rev.Jean Zache Duracin, assigns the priest to serve the congregation of St. Marc’s. The priest’s salary is paid by the Diocese of Haiti, the largest diocese in the Episcopal church with over 83,700 members and more than 100 congregations. Pere Lenord also officiates ~2 Sundays per month at St. Jude’s, a “baby church” just outside the town of Miragoane.
St. Marc’s has several choirs, including adult, children’s and youth. There is an active youth group, and Sunday services are enthusiastic, with lay leaders playing an important role. The worship experience is strongly Anglican with a healthy dose of Haitian culture. Trip participants typically find these services moving and memorable regardless of their faith background.