January 19, 2010: In the wake of the devastating earthquake that struck Haiti on January 12th, Belhaven University students are raising funds towards relief efforts on the island. One hundred percent of the donations will go to Haiti relief organizations, one of which is the Fleury Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to serving “Haiti's forgotten children and their families.” The foundation is located in Leogane, which was at the epicentre of the earthquake and lost up to 90% of its buildings. The Fleury Foundation operates a girls' orphanage, school, bakery, clinic, and church. Today, the church is the only building left standing, leaving 40 girls homeless and 500 students without an existing school.

The Belhaven Leadership Council (BLC) is spearheading the initial fundraising efforts with a view to long-term engagement with relief organizations in Haiti. Junior Jonathan Kalehoff, Community Outreach Coordinator for the BLC, says that their goal is to work with relief organizations that provide both spiritual and physical nourishment. He says, “One of our biggest goals in giving to relief organizations is to ensure that the love of Christ is given alongside the meeting of physical needs.” Kalehoff hopes that Belhaven students will find ways to get involved in helping Haiti recover in the long-term, whether it is through raising more funds or physically traveling to Haiti to help.

There will be a box for donations in The Cube, and donations will also be taken at lunch and dinner at the Dining Commons each day this week and will continue indefinitely. For more information, contact Jonathan Kalehoff, Community Outreach Coordinator for the Belhaven Leadership Council (BLC).