Helping Haitian kids go to school

80% of Lasserre’s children do not attend school because their families cannot afford it. It’s up to us to change that statistic.

My name is Schendy Kernizan and I was born (in NJ,USA) and raised in Haiti. My parents, uncles, and aunts all lived in the area that I called home until I graduated high school. I have since been trained as an architect at Philadelphia University and am now co-Director at Self-Assembly Lab at MIT.

Although I don’t live in Haiti anymore, the opportunities and privileges afforded to me living in the United States are a daily reminder of how important it is to support my country's young people. That is why I will always stay closely involved in the place that helped shape the individual I have become today. My goal is to help my family succeed in their mission to give back to our community; a community that previously lacked educational services for the children. That is where you come in.

Public school enrollment for the children of Lasserre, Haiti typically starts with a registration fee of about $20 US dollars. Your donation to this GoFundMe can provide schooling to a child who may not otherwise have the opportunity. Schooling at Lasserre's Own Hands includes education for the students, two meals a day, school supplies, and salary and proper training for its educators.

• $50 provides schooling for 1 child for 1 month, $600 provides schooling for 1 child for 1 year
•$1,600 provides schooling for 1 classroom for 1 month, $20,000 provides schooling for 1 classroom for 1 year
•$4,000 provides an entire month of schooling for Lasserre's Own Hands, $50,000 would support Lasserre's Own Hands for an entire year.

Lasserre, like many villages in Haiti, has no hospitals, clinics or schools. Located 20 miles east of Port-au-Prince, it is home to 5,000 residents. And while most cannot afford to, parents who can afford to send their children to school are left with no choice but to send them by foot to the nearest town, 4 miles away.

Lasserre’s Own Hands was created to improve the lives of all the children in Lasserre. By providing educational opportunities, food and literacy programs in a village where there is no school, the group promotes community solidarity and engagement, centered at the children. With its growing popularity, the number of children taking part in the program continues to increase. As a result, the program needs additional support in order to grow with its community. The biggest need is finding stable financial outlets to continue feeding the children, training and paying salaries for the teachers, as well as providing classroom supplies and building maintenance.

I recently had the chance to return home to Haiti, and it’s always emotional. It reminds me how much I value the way I was brought up - to remain close to family, to respect others and to cherish my safety and security. Until my recent trip, it had been five years since my last return home to Haiti. Five years prior, I had been doing relief work following the earthquake. Being able to see the school and the children develop and play in a safe and stimulating environment was not only exciting, but also a positive and inspiring experience.

Contributing to this page will help continue to make educational growth in Lasserre possible, improving the lives of the children. Please share with your friends to spread the word. Your donation and support are greatly appreciated.

Thank you in advance,


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  • Marcus Tan 
    • $20 
    • 18 mos
  • Jillian Peracciny 
    • $20 
    • 19 mos
  • Lee S 
    • $35 
    • 19 mos
  • Padi DeGuire 
    • $50 
    • 20 mos
  • Jason Foss 
    • $50 
    • 21 mos
See all

Organizer and beneficiary

Schendy G. Kernizan 
Milton, MA
Pierre Kernizan 
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