for the past five days, just like tonight we watched footage of the devastation in Haiti. late thursday afternoon while watching the news we saw a piece from one of the major relief agencies saying that they thought you shouldn’t support YELEHaiti.
Honestly in light of the circumstances, it was both disheartening and shocking; to hear such a major organization spew negativity on Wyclef’s organization. knowing that we have made several donations to YELEHaiti, we wondered why any organization would attempt to dissuade anyone from making a donation to a known organization; with a great track record of charitable activism in this area.
for those of you who don’t know – Wyclef Jean IS Hatian. Since 2005 Wyclef has tirelessly provided for the people of Cite Soleil and Belvedere, through his charity YELEHAITI. we’ve featured his work projects and his fundraising event videos here on this blog. it’s widely known that Wyclef is more popular with the Hatian people than even their president.
So this attack on his charity totally blindsided us. it’s almost as though this charity who made this negative statement about Wyclef’s foundation, didn’t have any dirty laundry. we all remember the massive mis-use of donations following Hurricane Katrina by several leading charities – including the charity who made these disparaging statements.
just a fyi to the charitywatch folks - as proof of your stupidity, one of the US Haitian Performers / Members of YELEHaiti’s team was in Port Au Prince working on setting up a fundraising event; when he lost his life in the earthquake. he was confirmed dead by a cnn crew; along with his wife, kids and his manager. his body was found buried under rubble in a car in Port Au Prince on saturday. Our condolences go out to His Family and the YELEHaiti team. Jimmy O will be sorely missed.
Repos dans la paix Jimmy O. vous êtes mort pendant que vous viviez – pour le Haïti
The video below is Wyclef’s response to the accusations. he and his wife have just returned from Port Au Prince where they worked side by side with the people of Port au Prince collecting bodies in the streets. his humility is both touching and inspiring.
we will continue to support the efforts of YELEHAITI for as long as we can see their boots on the ground in Haiti; helping the Haitian People.
Wyclef mentioned on a CNN interview before departing to Haiti that Jimmy O, born Jean Alexandre, was missing and rumored dead:
“I urge everyone who’s listening right now that knows how great this kid is in Haiti — I need y’all to verify this information. It would be a terrible loss for us.”
CNN happened to be on the scene when Alexandre’s body was discovered in a vehicle on Friday, his identity confirmed by a passport he was carrying. Also present were Alexandre’s agent, as well as the rapper’s wife and two of his three children. All were visibly distraught at the discovery of Alexandre’s body. His agent commented that Alexandre’s death would be “be tremendous in Haiti.”
Alexandre worked in Haiti with the Yele Haiti foundation, and discovered and developed talent in the impoverished nation. Since the quake, largely because of social media efforts, Yele Haiti has raised $2m for rescue and relief efforts.
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