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Non-Profit Organizations: Yéle Haiti


Led by Grammy Award-winning Haitian born hip-hop musician Wyclef Jean, Yéle Haiti is a non-political organization intended to empower the people of Haiti and the Haitian diaspora to rebuild their nation. More than just another NGO, Yéle is a movement – one that combines the power of music with the tools of development in the areas of education, health, environment and humanitarian assistance and seeks to chart a new course for Haiti’s future.


Our mission is to use the potent combination of music and development to create small-scale, manageable and replicable projects to contribute to Haiti’s long-term progress. Each initiative is imbued with the unique power that only music possesses, reflecting the passion of Wyclef, Yéle’s founder. Whether utilizing local hip-hop musicians to deliver food in an isolated and forgotten neighborhood or crafting tunes for the radio to build popular support for a particular project, each program creatively integrates music as a central element in project delivery and radiates the essence of this synergy at its core.

Each of Yéle’s projects is conceived as a catalyst for the larger goal of helping to leverage resources and foster renewed hope for Haitians to rebuild their nation. Central to this mission is helping to project a new forward-thinking image that accurately reflects Haiti’s youthful population and their unique and irrepressible spirit, which is an integral part of their culture. We firmly believe that given a genuine opportunity to shape the future, Haiti’s youth will shock the world with their ability to take Haiti to the next level.

Statement from Wyclef

“Haiti is my native country, one I know as the first black nation to gain independence in 1804. Most other people seem to know Haiti only by the statistics about how bad things are there. The majority of its 8 million residents live on less than $1 per day. Unemployment is close to 80 percent. Average life expectancy is less than 50 years. Haiti is the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere.

“I have been spending a lot of time talking with people in my native country to try and understand what is behind these statistics and the recent escalation of violence, all of which brings tears to my eyes. I have had conversations with gang leaders, met with the police officers and sat down with the leaders of the militias and the army. I have had meetings with the interim government. I have talked with Haitians from all walks of life, all colors of skin, all backgrounds and beliefs. From all these people I hear only one thing in my head and feel only one thing in my heart, that there is only one Haiti. Every Haitian loves their country like a mother loves her child.

“I see old women with large bags of rice on their heads and men on street corners selling sugarcane and mangos, all just trying to survive with a strong sense of pride. Walking past a church in my village, I hear the congregation singing an appeal to God to hear their cries and grant deliverance to Haiti. Through experiences like this I sense where my mother and my father got their strength. Now the whole country needs to reach deep into the spirit and strength that is part of our heritage.”

~ Click here to donate to Yéle Haiti ~


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