Community service is a core part of GOALS’ work in Haiti. It is a way for our kids to give back and learn the importance of volunteerism. To be on a team and play soccer they all commit volunteer hours on projects that will benefit their community.
Community service includes local development projects that involve players’ families and adults in the area. Service also includes activities and events organized for children younger than 10 years old, and players who don’t yet have places on local GOALS teams.
The kids submit ideas for proposed projects and with our staff they are provided the means to take charge of their own reasonable project.
Unlike other aspects of their life they may not be able to control, volunteering allows them to choose where and how to make a difference. It’s easy to get inspired with a cause they truly care about—and it’s rewarding for them to see their direct impact.
This year, the kids in Carrefour Croix painted the water faucets with bright colors to match their enthusiasm for the programs. The water faucets are a wonderful meeting place for the community members to meet and talk given there is no other water source in this community.
For the Destra kids, their priority was to fix the road leading to their isolated community. To get there, you must go on a road that runs through a sugar plantation for at least a mile. When it rains, the road is impossible for cars. At times even, taxi motorcyclists must avoid the road. It is the same road the kids must take to get their school. Their presence in school is affected by the quality of the road. We assisted them with the tools and supplies to fix part of the road themselves.
As for the kids in Bossan, they had a bigger need since their field was recently bought by a foreign businessman to build a hotel. After a meeting where we demonstrated the importance of the programs to the community we were able to convince the owner of the sugar cane field next door to allow us to use the field next door. The Bossan kids have taken on the responsibility to clear the field so they can start using it in January.
From the kids’ tree nursery that they have been tending all year we have been able to plant over 3k trees. Most recently we planted 1,300 trees in rural Léogane over two days. 100 kids participated, and trees included mango, cherry, avocado and flamboyant.
These projects are a great way for the kids to give back to their villages and serve as important learning opportunities for these bright young community leaders.