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Clinton Bush Haiti Fund boosts Regis College Haiti ProjectJune 27, 2012
The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund has announced a nearly half-million-dollar grant to Regis College to educate faculty at six Haitian nursing schools. The $463,000 grant was made to Regis’ Haiti Project to assist in providing 24 Haitian educators with master’s degrees in nursing. These nurses, in turn, will be able to pass that education along to 1,650 students each year. The program has a multiplier effect on Haiti by sustaining nursing jobs, promoting healthcare standards, and transforming the health sector, all while filling a need for skilled Haitian health workers.
“All of us who work with Haiti know,” said Regis College President Antoinette M. Hays, PhD, RN, “that collaboration from inside – from the Haitian Ministry of Health and Haitian universities – is the best kind of collaboration. That is what this Regis international nursing faculty partnership is all about as it educates the educators in nursing in Haiti.”
“Haiti is in dire need of indigenous health workers who are committed to their local communities. Long-term health and economic results can only be achieved by partnering with Haitians to build the health training and service programs that they own, operate in, and use,” said Clinton Bush Haiti Fund board member Senator William H. Frist. Senator Frist is also a thoracic surgeon.
“The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund’s support of our work is a dream come true,” said Nancy White Street, ScD, RN, Director of the Regis College Haiti Project. “Thinking back to 2007 when we first travelled to Haiti to complete our on-site needs assessment of nursing in Haiti, and all that we have accomplished and overcome since that time, it is quite extraordinary. I always knew we were doing something very special; although we were a small team, our spirit and conviction were mighty.”
The Haiti Project emerged last year after three years of planning and development. It has evolved with the collaboration of Partners In Health, a Boston-based nonprofit organization dedicated to providing quality health care to populations devastated by poverty and disease since 1987. Initial funding for Regis’ Haiti Project included funding from an anonymous donor to PIH and generous support from the Ansara Family Fund at the Boston Foundation.
In keeping with the theme of “Building Haiti Back Better,” the Regis College Haiti Project is an “educate the educator” model that is building constructive pathways for nursing education to help build the human infrastructure of Haiti’s health system. The Project supports a sequencing of some classes in Haiti, some online, and some during summer residencies on the Regis campus.
The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund was formed after the January 2010 earthquake in Haiti when President Obama asked former President Bill Clinton and George W. Bush to lead a fundraising effort to help Haiti build back better. The Fund, which provides grants, loans and equity to organizations promoting sustainable economic development, has also provided significant funding for Partners In Health as a way of improving overall health care. Grants like the one just made to the Regis College Haiti Project are designed to support the Haitian people's efforts to chart their own successful future.