Sister Parish Project

St. Pierre church
St. Pierre church, Baradères, Haiti


How to help

About Baradères

About the project




Project highlights

Primary schools · Secondary school
Medical aid · Cistern

Primary school support

Pope John Paul II primary school in Baradères has about 500 students in preschool through sixth grade.

Thirteen smaller schools in villages are the only educational institutions available in those outlying areas. One of the more remote, Fond Des Palmistes, is only a few miles west of Baradères. But the trip takes 5 hours by canoe and then on foot up a steep, rocky trail.

Helping the primary school children is the primary commitment of the sister-parish project.

In all, over 1,800 kids are being educated at the parish primary schools—in a country where only about half the adults can read and write.

Father Pascal and a student  at the parish school in Salière

Father Pascal and a student at the
parish school in Salière.

Salaries for 52 teachers at the primary schools total about $15,000 and are funded through the sister parish project. About $2,000 is given annually for teacher training and equipment such as textbooks and blackboards. But supplies are woefully inadequate.

Baradères has other schools, but all require tuition—even the public school.

By contrast, parish elementary schools charge no tuition yet have much higher academic standards. They are administered by Haitian sisters of the order of Ste. Therèse de l'Enfant-Jésu. Most parish schoolteachers are local lay people.

Many Pope John Paul II students walk 5 miles or more to school—without having eaten. They leave at 1:00 p.m. A noon meal is provided sporadically through Catholic Relief Services, but the CRS truck sometimes cannot make the journey over the mountains. When available, food at the school usually consists of a blend of rice and wheat.

In March 2001, the sister-parish project obtained foundation support of $15,000 to fund a feeding program. This provides fish, vegetables and rice to supplement the CRS program.

Beginning in early 2002, the parish obtained a separate annual grant so that we could also supply powdered milk to the youngest children. This grant has been renewed annually through 2005.

Parish school in Fond Des Palmistes

Parish school in Fond Des Palmistes—
a 5-hour trek from Baradères by canoe and
rocky mountain trail.