BALTIMORE, MD -- One year ago, the world came to a standstill at the horrific and shocking news of the devastating earthquake in Haiti. Today, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. announced plans to help rebuild one of the damaged elementary school buildings.
Alpha is the world's oldest collegiate fraternity of black men, and the first integrated collegiate fraternal organization in the U.S. It has scores of Haitian-born members and Haitian descendants among the nearly 200,000 men initiated into Alpha since its founding in 1906.
Upon learning of the catastrophe last January, fraternity members across the U.S. began collecting funds, and supplies. A delegation of brothers, including health and medical professionals, educators and social scientists, journeyed to Haiti on a humanitarian mission.
The delegation, led by fraternity (international) General President Herman "Skip" Mason, Jr., an Atlanta college administrator and minister, located more than 15 families of Alpha brothers in and around Port-Au-Prince. Those family members received direct contributions of cash, food, tents, toiletries, first aid supplies and fraternal love from the men of Alpha. They also had a chance to send video messages back to their relatives in the U.S., letting them know they had survived.
During the fraternity's annual convention, in Las Vegas, delegates adopted a plan to renovate one of the schools in the Croix de bouquet area of Haiti. The school is slated to be renamed the Alpha Academy.
"We've had an architect and members of the fraternity pay a visit to the site and we have schematic designs for the renovation of the school ready to go," said Mason. "We are pleased to announce that plans are underway for renovation to begin in March, with completion scheduled for midsummer."
In addition to repairs, the fraternity, through contributions to its Alpha Haiti Relief Fund, is providing furniture and supplies. Along with the national relief fund, local chapters all across the U.S., in Africa, Europe, Asia, and the Caribbean are raising funds for the project.
About Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.
Founded on December 4, 1906, at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., has continued to supply voice and vision to the struggle of African Americans and people of color around the world. The fraternity has long stood at the forefront of the African-American community's fight for civil rights through Alpha men such as Martin Luther King Jr., Adam Clayton Powell, Thurgood Marshall, Andrew Young, Edward Brooke, Cornel West, Lionel Richie, John H. Johnson, Paul Robeson and Jesse Owens among many others. The fraternity, through its college and alumni chapters, serves the community through more than 600 chapters in the United States, Europe and the Caribbean.