June 14, 2003 - Personal Web Site: Wendy's life in Haiti !

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By Admin1 (admin) on Saturday, June 14, 2003 - 5:56 pm: Edit Post

Wendy's life in Haiti !

Wendy's life in Haiti !

Welcome to

Wendy's life in Haiti !

learn about
My Peace Corps Service 1998-2002 (click here)

look here at what I'm doing in Haiti now
(See below)

A Community Art and Cultural Center for the Advancement of Jacmel

supporting grass roots development projects in Haiti

A bit about me and some reflections on my work and Haiti

Foundation Tet Kole
A project for Street Kids in Jacmel

A note to everyone:

While I finished my Peace Corps service in June 2000. I was not finished with Haiti (nor Haiti with me for that matter).

This web site began when I joined the Peace Corps in 1998. It was intended as a way to better stay in touch with friends and family. It turned out to be more than that. When I returned, I was amazed to see how many people had visited my website, and moreover how many people seemed to appreciate it. Responsive to that and to my current activities, I've decided to revive, expand and update the site (this time staying more on top of it.) I have learned it's power and am committed to wisely using it. I plan to be adding new information regularly, especially about SKAKAJ and TET KOLE.

I'm in Haiti, living here more than half time now. Haiti holds me. My lifestyle is simple, full and meaningful for me. I continue to learn and grow, laugh and cry. I hope you will check out my current involvement in Haiti, I'm very excited about what's happening. I have kept the old site from my Peace Corps days available for you to visit as well if Peace Corps is your interest, or if you're just curious. I hope you will continue to periodically visit this site, communicate with and support us as you are so moved. Please, do sign the guestbook. Thanks for visiting.

Founder and Leader
of both
Avanse and SKAKAJ,

Who is Wendy Goodman?

What is she thinking?
I had my first overseas experience at 15, and was profoundly affected by living in another culture, a different way of life from what I had known on Long Island, NY. Since that time, as life permitted, I continued my journeys, living and exploring much of the US and touching the lands and people of Europe, the Middle East, India, Latin America and the Caribbean. My orientation has always been toward understanding and improving.....just about everything I encountered (including myself!). I've worked to define, envision and realize what this means throughout my diverse life situations, from youth counselor, through corporate quality expert, management coach and team building consultant/trainer/coach, to organization development consultant, adaptive ski instructor, Peace Corps volunteer and now director of a community arts center. I have worked with individuals, leaders, leadership teams and work teams. I am a teacher, student, developer, life and management coach, artist, musician, athlete and lover of the natural planet.

Working for 12 years at IBM, I remained forever drawn to the diversity, richness and relationship to time I experienced in other cultures. In preparation for a life change and to further my understanding and effectiveness, I earned my Masters degree in Education in Organization Development from the University of Massachussetts at Amherst. A few years later, I chose to leave the security of my job at IBM to more fully integrate and engage my passions and skills in service to what I refer to as "earth based cultures".

In 1998, I joined the Peace Corps and went to live and serve in Haiti. As I say, I was finished with Peace Corps but not with Haiti. I continue to live in Haiti part-time, applying my skills to individual and project development there as well as in the US. I am now engaged in creating and running the community arts center with a small cadre of Haitian and American friends and colleagues.

I deeply believe that every human being has the right (if not the circumstance) to pursue peace and fulfillment in life. I work to find my own, and hope to help others pursue and realize their's.


Go to Wendy's home page

Some of Wendy's musings and reflections

Feb 26th 2003 I've been so busy getting SKAKAJ off the ground, that I haven't had time to write anything, though I certainly have been reflecting.

The Journey has been a gift, as I work to straddle cultures, seeking to be balanced on the best of both , creating a vehicle that manifests the best of both. My every consideration, question and doubt seems to work itself out and/or be somehow responded to.

In these dire times in Haiti (and around the world) of economic hardship and political uncertainty I found myself (appropriately) questioning the value and timeliness of this undertaking. 'How does it make sense to be creating an arts center when so many people are hungry, and even more will likely become hungry?' But what is so exciting about this undertaking to me, is that it not only works on the social aspects: the education, the pride and communication of the culture, but also responds to the very real economic needs of the artists and community of Jacmel. By supporting and engaging the artists, by opening possibilities and opportunities for them within an organized structure and encouraging the development of tourism by articulating that visitors to Jacmel are a primary client (along with the Children of Jacmel), SKAKAJ seeks to support the pride, education and attractiveness of Jacmel

When we did our pilot classes in paper mache and Folklore drumming and dancing, I was joyfully and profoundly touched by the excitement, involvement and pride of the children who participated. They continued dancing long after the class was over, and the desire to create and use paper mache masks is outlasting carnival itself.

I returned to the US last week, after 2 1/2 months in Jacmel, solidifying the foundation of and gathering community support fpr and participation in SKAKAJ. We are currently in the process of registering and become a legally recognized entity in Jacmel.

I will return to Haiti the end of April to participate in the annual May 1st celebration (where we plan to launch SKAKAJ) and to support the next stage development of SKAKAJ. While in the US, i will work to raise the initial funds that will allow us to open our doors in July with a solid foundation and program ....my goal for these 2 months is modest, only $20,000! (I'll be back in the late summer to raise more!) That would suffice to rent our space (for the year), pay for our housing services, purchase initial supplies, start up the art supply store, provide a small stipend as encouragement to those who have been and will offer their services, and maybe even purchase a used vehicle.

Whatever you can send would be greatly appreciated. Thanks for reading this....thanks in advance for your support.

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Story Source: Personal Web Site

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Haiti; Service



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