November, 2010 (New York). At its Fifth Annual Gala at The Ballroom at The Prince George Hotel in New York City, COHH presented its Hope Award to Dustin and Jenna Wadley. Gaston Michel and Pastor Wisney Geffrard were also recognized at the Gala as 2010 recipients of the COHH Hope Award. Those awards were made in Hinche, Haiti at the Grand Opening of the Orphanage on October 20, 2010.
The Gala was held for the fifth year to raise funds for developing and operating an orphanage in Hinche, Haiti. The Hope Award, introduced at the Inaugural Gala, was given to the honorees in recognition of their contributions to the development of the orphanage leading to its opening in October, 2010.
The gala was attended by by guests from across the country and included corporate, legal and local community representation. Breaking new ground, COHH became the first charitable organization to webcast its gala event world-wide to its supporters. Mark Newton, COHH President, began the evening with a nod to the audience – “Your contributions have made the realization of the dream possible. We are deeply grateful to all of you.” Pastor Emmanuel St Juste reflected on the past year, noting the tragic loss of life on January 12, 2010 and now the onset of cholera. He note however, “Haitian people are a resilient people, but they need help.” “With the completion of our orphanage project and commencement of operations” he continued, “We need to bring the dream alive. By this time next year, with God’s blessings, we expect to have children on site, in school and beginning to experience their new family and indeed their new lives.”
The evening was a festive occasion featuring Haitian jazz music. The highlights of the evening were the performances by the Youth Choir of the French-Speaking Baptist Church of Stamford and the world-wide webcast of the program featuring a short film on life in Hinche, Haiti by Robin Fryday, a volunteer from Novato and a video presentation of the Grand Opening of the Orphanage in Hinche, Haiti on October 20, 2010. The video was prepared by Will Frager, a volunteer from Topeka, Kansas. James Lipscomb, COHH Executive Director, concluded the evening with a gift of a gold key to the audience and reminder to them and the webcast audience that they hold the key to the future of the children to be served at Center of Hope (Haiti).