2013 Annual Gala

2013 Annual Gala

November, 2013 (New York). At its Eighth Annual Gala at The Tent At Bryant Park Grill in New York City.  COHH presented its Hope Award to DOMUS Kids, Inc. of Stamford, Connecticut and Tim Charles of Melbourne, Australia. The Gala was held for the eighth year to raise funds for developing and operating an orphanage and school in Hinche, Haiti.

COHH Chairman, Emmanuel St. Juste provided a report wherein he advised the Gala guests, “I visited our school this summer and was pleased to find as many children attending our summer school as would soon be attending our regular school in the fall. The children and their caregivers were genuinely anxious to continue their education.  We have them attending school virtually year round and they are very happy about it.”

Commissioner William Carter (Department of Community Resources, Town of Greenburgh, NY) served as the master of ceremonies for the Program portion of the Gala. He introduced COHH Advisory Board Chairman, James L. Lipscomb, who presented a Hope Award to Tim Charles and Welkin Entertainment of Melbourne, Australia in recognition of their annual fundraising events in support of COHH. James accepted the Award on behalf of the recipients. Mr. Carter also introduced COHH Executive Director, Deborah Straughan, who presented a Hope Award to DOMUS Kids, Inc, a Stamford, Connecticut-based not-for-profit whose vision is that  “no child shall be denied hope, love, or a fair chance in life.” Since 1972, Domus Kids, Inc. has helped thousands of the region’s most vulnerable youth and their families experience success. The love, structure, and support provided in their educationalresidential, and community programs help high-risk youth who’ve experienced significant childhood trauma get on the path to a satisfying and productive adulthood.

Mark Newton, President of COHH provided a report on the orphanage and school. He reported that “while we believe we had a very good school year, we were not satisfied with all of our results.” He said, ”we were determined to provide extra help to some of the children and additional training for the teachers. We were fortunate enough to get a volunteer, Peggy Leriche, from Houston, Texas, with Teach For America experience, to visit with us in June and provide curriculum development training to our teachers.”

Mark also reported that Will Frager, a friend and Hope Award winner, returned to Haiti this summer from Paris, France, and picked up where Peggy left off. Mark said, “In addition to coordinating our summer school for first, second and now third grade, Will helped us find additional teachers and students.”  Mark also reported that COHH now has two orphans at the site, Elbison Mompremier and Stanley Gauthier. The Gala guests were then shown a short video on the activities at the orphanage and school. The video can be seen at right.

The evening was closed with acapella songs by the New Vision Choir of the French-Speaking Baptist Church of Stamford, CT.