THE LONGEST JOURNEY STARTS WITH A SINGLE STEP
PAZAPA or STEP-BY-STEP (Haitian Creole proverb)
“The longest journey starts with a single step” is a Chinese proverb. Anyone in education knows that any task can be achieved when broken down into small attainable steps , guaranteeing success. The first Sustainable Development Goal for the U.N. is to lift the poorest people out of poverty by 2030. Who could quarrel with this aim? Apart from the humanitarian aspect there is even a utilitarian one. We are all adversely affected by the poverty of others. Poverty brings sickness, resentment, despair and is a breeding ground for violence as well as disease. In the U.N.A., which supports and monitors the U.N. we believe this goal needs addressing urgently and that there is a way to do it, which has already begun.
WHERE? In the POOREST country in the Western World. HAITI, where life expectancy is low, child mortality, unemployment and illiteracy are all sky high. The people are malnourished, but their indomitable spirit is evident in a rich culture of music, art, wisdom and folk tales.
WHAT has been done? Since the Earthquake in 2010 which killed 250,000 that is 3% of the population, a school has been rebuilt and refinanced for children with learning difficulties (sensory and mobility problems, difficulties with sight or hearing). These children and their families would have been rejected and forced to live secret lives of shame; but now are being enabled to come into the sunlight, receive education and become net contributors to their families. Through a step by step approach they have found self-worth and become a future hope for Haiti, and through Haiti’s example, hope too, for the rest of the world.