The mission of the Haitian Education & Leadership Program (HELP) is to create, through merit- and need-based university scholarships, a community of young professionals and leaders who will promote a more just society in Haiti. With 84% of university-educated Haitians living abroad, Haiti has the highest rate of “brain drain” in the world, compounded by Haiti’s 1% university enrollment rate, the lowest in the world. HELP addresses these issues by supporting high-performing, economically disadvantaged Haitian students pursuing university degrees in a variety of fields. Having grown from a single student in 1997 to a student body of 150 for the 2013-2014 academic year, HELP is the largest university scholarship program in Haiti.
Each HELP scholarship includes tuition at an internationally accredited university in Haiti; textbooks and supplies; housing in HELP dormitories; living stipends; advising and counseling; study abroad opportunities; mandatory curricula in computer literacy, English language, and leadership and citizenship; and career services, internships, and job placement. Through this comprehensive package of both training and support, HELP gives students the tools and motivation they need to become successful professionals breaking the cycle of poverty for their families, engaged citizens leading efforts for change in their communities, and strong role models bringing hope to other young people in their country.