Not enough can be said about Haiti right now. I’m annoyed with people who have the audacity to slam charity of any kind for people who are significantly less fortunate than us. The luxury of being an American is that most of your worries (including the ones about being outraged at banks, car companies, Presidents and the like) is literally minute compared to worrying about where you will get water that day or if your child will live because of a limb infection. This lack of perspective is frightening. I do tolerate questions of infrastructure, not just from our side, but from the Haitian’s side as well. I pray this tragedy sheds light on the necessity for roads, however crudely paved, steel beams (even if you must beg another country for steel) to reinforce hospitals and other important buildings. Some of the problems of getting resources to Haiti have nothing to do with well meaning countries trying to arrive there. Bottle necking supplies are stuck because there is a wealthy of help trying to land on the size of a pin top. Haiti is not a large country. Six large sized planes fit on their runway at once. I’m annoyed with the media trying to imply that the significant help of the US is paling in comparison to say Israel. Israel is wonderful for what they do because they had one mission: get a mobile hospital up. The United States is trying to do that, clear bodies, land relief supplies and clear ports, just to name a few of the agenda items. This is not as easy as one would think. Let’s put the focus back on relief and support instead of who’s doing what better. There are tons of miracles happening daily. People from over 30 countries are aiding. There are people being found alive in rubble after over five days. There are miracles happening daily.
SistaPAC is a group I’ve worked with before (three wonderful women who’ve taken their own goals in entertainment and ran with them) on a short film I wrote called “Perpendicular” (a silent that was a few festivals with great joy). They have deep roots in Haiti and have sent the below helpful email out that I will post so that people will know how to help. Social media is changing how we better ourselves so lets make sure we remember to better ourselves in the process.
I would also like to send my love and prayers to the Toussaint family. My old Brooklyn roommate, Kiki, lost her father to the tragedy. I can only hope my dad was there to greet him on the other side (especially since my dad was fascinated with the story that Kiki and I decided to room together as strangers looking for apartments one day in Brooklyn. We lived together for over a year!).
As many of you know by now, the tiny island of Haiti was hit hard by a devastating earthquake on Tuesday, January 12, 2010. Haiti has suffered much since it gained its independence on January 1, 1804. This recent devastation is one more blow in a long history of hardship.
Two of SistaPAC’s co-founders are of Haitian decent (Maureen Aladin and Ella Turenne) and the third co-founder, Jessica Hartley, also has immediate family who are of Haitian decent. All three have family still in Haiti and have experienced what the rest of the diaspora has – family members missing, injured and some hopeful stories of rescue. We have been heartened by the outpouring of support from friends, family, the US government and the international community.
Please know that Haiti is in a dire state of emergency. It needs your prayers and help to make it through this crisis. It will need it now and for some time to come. We urge you to give – whether monetarily or in the form of medical, food or other supplies. We also implore you to keep Haiti in your thoughts not only next week, next month or next year, but as long as it will take to help rebuild the country.
For those of you looking for reputable places to give, we offer a few below. Giving can be as easy as texting on your cell phone or writing a check. It can also be as involved as bringing clothes and supplies to a drop off point.
Please find a link below to a beautiful song written and performed by Rob Murat entitled “Souls.” This song was a Lennon Award Winner. It has been dedicated to the people of Haiti and we hope that it will lift your spirits.
SistaPAC Productions was founded on the principle of giving women a voice – and today we lend our voices to send a message to all of you that the Haitian people are in need. Please do all you can and keep them in your prayers.
Ella, Maureen and Jessica
SUPPORT HAITIAN MEDIA
The Haitian Times
Google Haiti Crisis Page
Haitian Women for Haitian Refugees
Please use rear entrance on Lincoln Road between Nostrand and New York Avenue. Enter through St. Francis Church parking lot. To make a financial tax-deductible donation to Haitian Women for Haitian Refugees, Lakou New York, and MUDHA Movement of Dominican Haitian Women, so that they may take supplies to Haiti, please mail donations to:
In response to the Earthquake in Haiti Danse Xpressions dance studio is working in collaboration with the Haitian Consulate office of NY as drop off center to have people donate items that are urgently needed within the next couple of days. We will be collecting items for the next 7 days starting today. These are items that we need to get out ASAP, on the medical planes that are leaving this upcmoning week. Below you will find a list of the requested items. We thank you in advance for your generosity
Drop off hours are :
List of Items Requested by the Haitian Consulate:
The following items have been requested urgently by the Haitian Consulate office of NYC. We kindly ask that you please only donate the items on this list as these are the items that are urgently needed. Note: There will be no collection of clothing at this time. In addition to the following items, Danse Xpressions is currently in need of people to donate boxes and packaging items, as well as volunteers to help during drop off hours and to help pack the boxes with the donated items.
1. Water ( Cases of bottled water )
Dwa Fanm is a human rights organization that works to protect women and children. To give financial support, please make donations at www.dwafanm.org or Visit www.brooklyntabernacle.org to make donations directly online. Please UNBLOCK your popup blocker.
Make your checks out to ‘Brooklyn Tabernacle’ with ‘Haiti Relief’ in the memo line and mail it to Dwa Fanm P.O. Box 23505, Brooklyn, N.Y. 11201.
For donations of medical supplies, please bring your items to:
Once again, we would like to sincerely thank you for helping to make the launch of our project a success. We were happy to have the opportunity to work with you, and we look forward to building with you in the near future.
I wasn’t around consciously when I was born so I don’t have anything but my Mom’s stories about labor to compare an actual birthday to. But somebody got an idea we should celebrate that day every year and so here we are. I don’t come from a big family so I don’t have very many specific memories. My first 12 or so were just me and my mom and my dad. After that a few friends trickled over but there was never any big to-do so that’s why I have this love hate relationship with birthday events. I think my first favorite birthday memory was being in Detroit in the middle of the biggest snow storm ever (and that’s big for Detroit) and I didn’t have much to do but sit in my room and listen to the local public radio jazz station. I had my very own stereo (thanks Mom and Rent-A-Center) and I called in and dedicated a John Coltrane tune to myself. After that I remember my first date at 16 and we went to Red Lobster. If only the relationship stayed that sweet. After that, birthdays have been a bit uncomfortable for me. On one hand, I want the fanfare but on the other I don’t want it because I really don’t know how to handle it. Or how you’re supposed to be about it. I’m not really extrovert though I can talk a lot in general so there’s a lot of dual roles playing here. I think I’ll be more comfortable by just ending this with acknowledging that my dad’s birthday is in ten days and I will be warm and fuzzy on that day instead of the tear fest (I’m creative visualizing). Today I’ll also say that my heart is really full of love and light for all of those close to me and those far away (Haiti, keep your souls up! The world sends you action prayers) and that’s what I think birthdays should really be about. Love inventory.
It could be because I’m biased towards Capricorns (shout out to Imani Uzuri - my fellow “Lucy”) but I just love Capricorn singers. I do. And every since I went to Sade at Madison Square Garden by myself because it didn’t even occur to me to invite anyone else, I was hooked. It actually started earlier than that. When I was in high school my mother was ALL about getting our hair done every two weeks (it was Detroit, home of the 24 hour beauty salons) even though sometimes our phone was shut off. Anyway, Detroit beauticians epitomize classy to me. They always dressed nice even though they were on their feet burning some hair all day. There was one lady at Vantinus Hair Salon in the Riverfront Towers who used to play Sade ALL the time. The feeling from watching a classy woman (since I was an uncomfortable pimply chunky teenager) listening to classy music has inspired me from that point on. So Sade will cause me to drop what I’m doing and pay attention. Plus her business is so not in the streets like other nameless light bulbs out there.
So she’s back with “Soldier of Love” and, yes, it sounds just like Sade but that’s what I expect. She’s not out there trying to break music molds because she already did thanks. Bossip has her new video here:
Check it out BEFORE Sony swipes it.
I just realized also that I’ve been wearing my hair like Sade for the past 6 months! Coincidence? I think not.
I’ll be at the concert and this time I’ll remember to ask the BF. Heh.
“If a writer knows enough about what he is writing about, he may omit things that he knows. The dignity of movement of an iceberg is due to only one ninth of it being above water.”
- Ernest Hemingway