In the wake of the devastating earthquake of January 2010, Sélébré Ayiti was formed by Haki and Myriam Halisi, two people Haitian descent who are dedicated to the notion that “the only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”After the tears and the pain had subsided from this tremendous emotional loss, an idea began to germinate about how they could help their ancestral home following such devastation to life and infrastructure. What could we do that would actually be useful and where did their expertise lie? And, of course, who specifically were they planning to help? Many organizations already existed in Haiti that were trying to help, so naturally they were not interested in “re-inventing the wheel.”
Both Haki and Myriam participated in interscholastic athletics during their formative years and have often reminisced about the significant contributions these experiences have made to their lives. Often these conversations would lead to a discourse about what current Haitian youth are missing from the lack of such activities in Haiti on a national level.
“Remember how Haiti use to be…? Remember that game at the gymnasium between St. Louis and Canado…? Or the Soccer game between Racing and Violette at the Stade Silvio Cartor. Kids today don’t know what they are missing… Why don’t they do these things anymore?
Encouraged by the need for any and all aid in the wake of the devastation of the earthquake in January 2010, they decided to turn these conversations into a plan of action and SélébréAyiti was the result.
Sélébré Ayiti was created to further their vision of helping Haitian youth to achieve a brighter future by providing them with the opportunities for expression that all youth should have throughout the global community. Leveraging their passion for sport and their understanding of Haitian society and culture,the founders have developed a network of partners and organizations willing to assist them in their efforts to provide opportunities for Haitian youth.In doing so, they seek to honor the rich history of the Republic of Haiti, and hope to inspire Haitians to new heights of achievement in whatever they aspire.Indeed, they hope to celebrate the history and culture of Haiti.