Located in Cite Soleil in the same vicinity where Mercy & Sharing began in 1994, Community Institute of Teaching and Education (C.I.T.E.) School is a lighthouse of the hope and opportunity shining in the slums of Port-au-Prince. Providing education every day to 222 students in grades 1-7, C.I.T.E. School is preparing children to be productive citizens. The school recently moved to a new location to provide more space and a better learning environment. New programs at C.I.T.E. School include evening adult literacy classes and children’s dance and basketball classes.
Adult Literacy Classes at C.I.T.E. School
With generous funding from Ray and Marie Ginther, Mercy & Sharing started an adult literacy program at C.I.T.E. School in Cite Soleil in July 2011. Cite Soleil is the worst slum in Port-au-Prince and adult illiteracy is a chronic barrier to employment and economic advancement.
In a country where less than 2% of the adults have graduated from high school and illiteracy rates exceed 70%, this will be a blessing. Cite Soleil is a location often shunned by other international aid organizations due to the volatile situation with local gangs and the lack of access to basic utilities. Because the school historically has only operated during the day, this is an incredible opportunity to leverage existing facilities to provide additional outreach to the community.
Mercy & Sharing’s Program Director and four teachers will provide reading and writing skills for adults in Cite Soleil. Seventy adults have registered so far and we anticipate this number growing to 100 students in the coming weeks. Students will follow the curriculum of the Secretary d’Etat a l’Alphabetisation, an organization with a special program for teaching adults to read and write.
The courses will be taught from 2-5pm Monday through Friday during the summer and from 5-8PM during the regular school year. Teaching adults to read and write increases their ability to find employment and provide for their families.