Children at Wings of Hope, an organization BC Faculty member David Manzo has volunteered for the past four years. (Photo from http://heartswithhaiti.org)
BC Faculty Member Seeks Aid for Haiti
Pulse Instructor David Manzo is getting the word out about Hearts with Haiti, an organization he has volunteered with for the past four years
By Melissa Beecher | Chronicle Staff
A long-time Boston College faculty member who serves as the president of the Cotting School in Lexington is seeking donations for abandoned and handicapped children in Haiti, who have been devastated by the earthquake.
Pulse Instructor David Manzo, ’77, was receiving grim emails from his friends and colleagues in Port-au-Prince today, relaying the desperate situation caused by a 7.0-magnitude earthquake and its aftershocks.
Manzo read aloud the bleak and rushed text of an email, which explained the school and orphanage he had volunteered at for the past four years was gone. All the children – most severely handicapped and confined to wheelchairs – escaped, but two staffers were severely injured and could not be helped at overrun hospitals. A desperate effort was underway to bring the injured home to the US for medial treatment.
Manzo had most recently been in Haiti during Thanksgiving and was scheduled to return Jan. 29. He had run exchange programs for teachers at the Cotting School in Lexington and the Haitian sister school, Wings of Hope.
“You have to understand that we are very close – these are people I know and love,” said Manzo. “What I am hearing is that all remains is rubble. It’s all gone.”
Even before the earthquake, instructors and volunteers from Hearts with Haiti – a nonprofit that supports the St. Joseph’s Home for Boys in Port-au-Prince, Wings of Hope in Fermathe and Trinity House in Jacmel – operated with just two hours of electricity a day and no running water.
Boston College students and staff members have traveled with Manzo to Haiti regularly, and were emailing and messaging through Facebook to receive updates as to the status of the schools, Manzo said. Members of the BC Philosophy and Theology Departments have already started collections and alumni were anxious to find out what they could do to help.
“What they need most now most is donations. They need money so the people there can get the resources they need to do the work that needs to be done,” said Manzo. “It’s just terribly tragic that this has happened. We, here, are doing all we can to help.”
For more information on Hearts with Haiti or to make a donation to help the relief effort at the schools, visit http://heartswithhaiti.org