The Community School of Simonette was founded by Webert in 2006. Webert grew up in the village of Simonette and after graduating from university with a degree in French, his eyes were opened to the children in his village who were unable to attend school because their parents could not afford the fees. In 2006, Webert built a structure out of palettes and tarp and opened the doors to 36 students. With two other staff members, they continued working with the students out of this structure for four years.
In the summer of 2010, Webert met the Grooters as they were finishing their house in Simonette. After befriending them and working together, the Grooters founded Touch of Hope with the hopes to build one sound structure for the school. In the summer of 2011, Webert attained ownership of the property in the mountaintop and that fall they built the very first school building. Around 170 students attended school in the 2011-2012 school year.
In the summer of 2012, they built the second school building and the saying, “if you build it, they will come” couldn’t have been more real as 700+ students enrolled for the 2012-2013 school year.
In the spring of 2013, the third school structure was built. The cafeteria and office building were constructed in the summer of 2014 and the high school building was finished the summer of 2016.
This school year, 2016-2017, there are over 1,000 students enrolled with grades Preschool to 11th grade. In the next two years, 12th and 13th grade will be added and we expect to have our first graduating class in 2019!
Education is such a vital part to helping people overcome poverty in Haiti. It is estimated that only 5% of students will ever graduate from high school. With such a high illiteracy rate, we believe education is equipping the future generation with tools to rise up and out of extreme poverty.
The way we keep the school running is through the School Sponsorship program. We need approximately one-third of the students sponsored to meet our monthly budgets. If you are interested in sponsoring a child, click here to go to our School Sponsorship page and learn more about becoming part of educating the future generation of Haiti.