Tomorrow marks the one-year anniversary of the earthquake in Haiti. The immediate loss of life was difficult to imagine, and a year later the country is still in rubble. People live in overcrowded camps, safe water is scarce, and diseases like cholera are on the rise. When a crisis hits far away, it’s easy to feel helpless and hopeless for people we don’t know and can’t reach. Here in Grand Rapids, though, there is one way to remember and to help out in a small but significant way. Rays of Hope for Haiti is holding a one-night showing of Bagay Dwol, or “Strange Things,” at Celebration Cinema South. Tickets are $10 and all proceeds go directly to the people of Haiti. Tomorrow at Chez Olga, GVSU will announce a “Empowering Haiti Through Education” Scholarship “designed to educate and empower Haitian nationals.” The scholarship is “provided to needy Haitians with the understanding that they will return to Haiti and employ the skills learned developing sustainable programs in this impoverished nation.” We can have hope and do our part, through awareness and education.
And listen for bells. At 4:53 pm, bells will toll for 35 seconds to remember the 300,000 people lost and 1.3 million still struggling to survive.