Georgia Bulletin

The Newspaper of the Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta


Catholic Schools Do Their Part To Help Haiti

By LIZZIE HOWELL, Special To The Bulletin | Published February 4, 2010

Since the devastating earthquake hit Haiti on Jan. 12, the Marist School and St. Pius X High School have been doing their part to reach out to the people of Haiti in love and support.

Both schools immediately took up school-wide collections. The schools usually ask students to donate with a promise of an “out-of-uniform day” but decided that, in this case, the usual enticement need not apply.

The results were overwhelming at both schools.

“I saw people throwing in $10 and $20 bills,” said Marist senior Emily Saunders, “and it proved to me that Marist students know what it means to come to the aid of those who need their help as well as reminding me of everything I’ve learned from attending a Catholic school.”

Marist funds were donated to “Hands Together,” an organization that assists Haitians by feeding and educating children. St. Pius raised over $7,000, which was sent to Catholic Relief Services.

St. Pius also participated in “Fast for Haiti” set up by CRS. On Wednesday, Jan. 20, St. Pius X students had the opportunity to give up one meal and donate the cost to the people of Haiti. This way students were not only offering financial support but, by fasting, were also somewhat able to be in solidarity with the people.

Both schools are far from done with their efforts. Marist is continuing to contribute by selling hot chocolate every morning before classes, with the proceeds going to Haiti.

“Originally, we were going to sell hot chocolate for a profit, but then the earthquake in Haiti happened and we got to thinking that they could use the money a lot more,” said Matt Meyers, a senior who sells hot chocolate with three of his friends.

The Student Government Association at St. Pius is looking to take part in “Shoes for Haiti,” through which the community can donate shoes to Haitians.

“At St. Pius X, our mission is to form students to be true witnesses to the Gospel. This is our opportunity to put that mission into action,” said Gayle Ohrenberger, campus ministry director.

Diana Destin, a St. Pius X junior, has a special connection to Haiti; both of her parents are from Haiti, and, in addition to living there for five years herself, she has family members living there currently. She is truly touched by the work of both schools.

“I’m simply amazed at people’s generosity and how everyone has come together to help the country I called my first home in a time of need,” said Destin. “The disaster took me by surprise, but now I truly believe Haiti can be restored thanks to all the help it has been given.”

Lizzie Howell is a junior at St. Pius X High School.