Ayiti is the Creole spelling of the authentic name of the Arawak/ Taino homeland that is today called Haiti and Dominican Republic. By using the Creole spelling of the name, we are claiming ownership of Ayiti’s history and embracing a new narrative for the country.
A financial endowment is when money or assets are contributed to a fund that is invested. The yields from the investments are used for specific needs. Endowments are used by foundations, universities, non-profit organizations to ensure long-term capacity to meet their missions and goals. ACT is building the first endowed fund as a mechanism for Haitians and friends of Ayiti across the globe to shape a legacy of long-term support to Ayiti’s development.
ACT makes grants to Haitian-led organizations domiciled in Ayiti that are leading innovation in the areas of civic education, environment, and entrepreneurship.
Ayiti’s development needs have been well documented over time. While billions of dollars have been invested in Ayiti over the last several decades by international donors such as USAID, InterAmerican Development Bank, World Bank, the European Union, there has been little visible systemic progress, especially in rural communities.
ACT believes that in order to support Ayiti’s long-term development, Haitians in and out of Ayiti will need to mobilize our human and financial resources to drive coherent responses to the country’s development needs. Close to 70% of Ayiti’s skilled labor is outside of Ayiti. This population of over 6 million first- and second-generation immigrants sends approximately $2 billion in remittances annually to Ayiti, largely in support of family livelihoods, education, and health care. Over time, these remittances will dry up as Haitians in the diaspora lose their connections to Ayiti.
There are many non-profit and charitable organizations in Ayiti that provide needed, but uncoordinated, services to the population. However, ACT is the first community foundation using an endowment model that is created by and for Haitians with the explicit goal of being a permanent and reliable partner to the country as it charts its 21st-century path to development. Haitians who are interested in the sustainable development of Ayiti can now contribute to an endowment that is “the gift that keeps giving in perpetuity.” Through its grants and activities, ACT is an active contributor to efforts to build on the country’s assets and to change the narrative on Ayiti.
The funds collected are used to support ACT's mission and build an invested endowment fund. The yield from the investments are used to provide grants to Haitian-led organizations domiciled in Ayiti; a portion of the yield is also used to support ACT operations.
As a young foundation, ACT sought the support of The Miami Foundation, an established community foundation. This support includes technical assistance and the management of ACT’s investment portfolio. This arrangement allows ACT to conduct its affairs with the greatest transparency.
Ven Pou Ven, in Haitian Creole, translates to “twenty for twenty” and represents ACT’s ongoing effort to engage young professionals and Ayiti’s future leaders in philanthropy.
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