Poverty in Haiti is an injustice. Severe lack of access to education perpetuates the cycle of poverty between generations. The Haitian people have enormous potential but oftentimes lack the resources to fulfill. Thus, Artists for Peace and Justice was created to combat this injustice.
This year’s Artists for Peace and Justice: 2016 Festival Fair guest list was impressive, with many high-powered celebrities attending to lend their support for a cause close to their hearts: Canadian director, screenwriter, and producer Paul Haggis, Maria Bello, r&b soul superstar Maxwell, Pascal Raffy of Bovet 182, Jeremy Renner, Catherine Keener, Dean & Dan Caten (DSQUARED), artist Peter Tunney, Jeanne Beker, songstress Nelly Furtado, co-chair Natasha Koifman, and notable honoree of the event, actor Sean Penn.
Some startling facts:
- Over 75% of youth in Haiti cannot read or write. Only 50% attend primary school and from there, only 20% go on to secondary school. Only 1 out of 100 children in Haiti has the chance to attend college.
- Haiti has an unemployment rate of over 40%. Of those who do have jobs, more than 2/3 are employed “informally,” meaning they are selling their goods in the market or on the streets.
- Only 1 in 10,000 Haitians have access to a modern doctor. 70% lack access to running water and sanitary facilities. And only 11% have electricity.
Artists for Peace and Justice supports communities in Haiti through programs in education, healthcare, and dignity through the arts, by removing the barriers that poverty poses to a future of opportunity for children in Haiti.
More than $1.2 million was raised at this year’s event, for more information and support visit: www.apjnow.org
Images courtesy of bkonthescene