Skip to comments.Poorest of the poor
Posted on 01/14/2010 12:50:19 PM PST by WILLIALAL
In one of the world's worst slums, Cite Soleil, a school named after the daughter of Ohio Sen. Mike DeWine aspires to nourish and educate (Snip)
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti | Tucked into the western edge of this capital city is a slum so wretched and so dangerous it is strictly off-limits to U.S. government personnel.
More from this series Valley missionaries continue to return to Haiti Aid workers find themselves preparing children for a future that may never come Haitians have learned to put their trust in the hands of the Lord The name, ironically, means "City of the Sun."
"Nobody comes to Cite Soleil not the embassy people, not the press, not the politicians," said Father Tom Hagan, a Catholic priest from Philadelphia transplanted eight years ago from his role as Princeton University chaplain to Cite Soleil missionary.
Hagan comes here nearly every day every day it's deemed safe to visit the five complexes in the Becky DeWine School that educates and feeds 3,000 children each day in one of the world's worst slums.
Hagan first came to Haiti in 1985, with a group of college students, to work with 700 lepers in the northern Gonaives Diocese. That was the genesis of Hands Together, the Massachusetts-based aid agency that supports the Becky DeWine School and a medical clinic in Cite Soleil as well as humanitarian projects throughout Haiti.
Today Hagan is escorting Val Cohoon of Bellbrook on a tour of the schools. Her hostess at Emmanuel Christian Mission in Leogane, Rose Beaucejour, begged her not to go to Cite Soleil: "It isn't safe."
Cohoon decided to come anyway; she wanted to see Hagan's work firsthand. She knows it is the pet project of one of her U.S. senators, Ohio Republican Mike DeWine. The schools are named in honor of DeWine's 22-year-old daughter, who died in a 1993 car crash.
If one truly wants to see the hand of God, look at those who dedicate their lives in Haiti.
One of a few Haitian neighborhoods where nobody can be hurt by falling debris.