Gaelle’s Giving Heart
Interviewed by: Kathia Pierre, Lande Augustin, Catherina Davis & Bijoux A. Abellard
Written by: Bijoux Abellard
Edited by: Kency Desmangles
Photographed by: Skyphotografia
Most humans have basic fundamental needs to live their best lives, such as a good-paying job; access to education and health care; affordable housing in a good neighborhood; and emotional connection with other humans. Unfortunately, not all of us have the ability or access to these basic needs and necessities.
Gaelle Edouard-Joseph was born and raised in Haiti. She relocated to the Dominican Republic, where she is currently a student, an entrepreneur, raising a family, and doing philanthropic work.
After the devastating earthquake that hit Haiti in 2010, Gaelle embarked on several voluntary projects at the Dominican Republic border to assist Haitian families in need. Her primary target location is La Victoria, one of the most impoverished areas in the country. It is a place where many Haitians live in the most horrendous and deplorable conditions.
Gaelle, accompanied by her husband and a few friends, has made it their mission to visit these people as often as possible. During their visits, they distribute care packages, food, and whatever else the self-funded project can afford. She stated:
Many of these people are unable to work because they cannot attain their work permit. Either due to the Dominican Republic's laws which do not allow them to obtain such, or partly as a result of discrimination. Some have suggested they go back to Haiti, but many of them don’t know Haiti. They were born in the Dominican Republic. Others were given away at a young age.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, her efforts started with 50 kits but have grown to 200 - 300 kits to date. Gaelle’s passion for helping others was inspired at a young age by watching her mother help those in need. She wants to pass that onto her children, so one day they too can become pillars (Potomitan) in their communities. Her ultimate goal is to make education accessible and affordable for the children of La Victoria. She believes the more we help, the less suffering and poverty there will be.
For her kindness, her giving heart, and for going above and beyond to provide for the Haitian families in need in the Dominican republic is what makes Gaelle a true Fanm Potomitan.
If you would like to contribute and be part of Gaelle’s mission, please donate whatever your heart desires on her GoFundMe page. Your generosity will help her succeed in improving the lives of so many in need.