SMT-teaching-confirmation sMM, sK and Angela 11-20-11 230 The Sisters in Haiti visiting Cap Haiten Port-au-Prince Foyer and Kethia

About our Sisters of St. Margaret in Haiti

Life after the Earthquake

The earthquake that hit Port-au-Prince on January 12, 2010 has changed life in Haiti forever. Post-earthquake Haiti offers enormous challenges for the Haitian people, as well as unique and uncharted possibilities for ministry. Our Sisters are now renting a house owned by one of our Associates, and are still at work. They continue to run the Foyer Notre Dame and the Scholarship Program. The need has never been greater for both of these programs.

Foyer Notre Dame

The central work of the Sisters of St. Margaret in Haiti is the Foyer Notre Dame, a loving home for elderly women who are alone or whose families are not able fully to care for them. The Sisters provide spiritual and material support in a safe and loving environment, caring for residents through their final days and burial. Begun in 1962 by Sisters who in the course of their pastoral ministry saw a clear need and responded to it, the Foyer has been in continuous service through times of upheaval as well as in times of greater peace and prosperity.

 The Foyer Notre Dame is, in many ways, more like an extended, multigenerational family than a nursing home. Some of our residents are quite mobile, while others require much more personal and medical care. We also provide housing for our staff, and, in some cases, the means to begin or continue an education previously unavailable to them. Currently our Foyer Family also includes a teenaged girl whose mother has died.

 As of 2015, we have five elderly residents living with us; we expect the sixth will arrive soon.  We have begun the construction of a new building to replace the one that was destroyed in the earthquake. This will provide space not only for more residents, but also several rooms for guests. As care is provided at no cost to the residents, the work of the Foyer Notre Dame is completely funded by donations; we hope that the guest accommodations will provide some of the badly-needed funding for our operating costs.

Scholarship Program

The Sisters direct a scholarship program for children and young people who otherwise would be left out of school for lack of ability to pay even minimal fees. This program provides funds for any child in any school that is in danger of having to drop out of school because their parents cannot pay the minimum fees required. In the present economic situation, the Sisters Scholarship program has become a major pastoral and outreach work. Education is a precious privilege, the door to the future of this country and of individuals. The cost of tuition from pre-school to the end of secondary school varies from $250 to $1000 US dollars per child per year. We also welcome one time donations to the Sisters Scholarship Program.

Ministries in Changing Times

In addition to their work at the Foyer and with the Scholarship Program, the Sisters in Haiti spend much of their time on the road. They travel to a great many of the patronal festivals of parishes both in Port-au-Prince and in the countryside. They are a source of strength to these parishes and provide a ministry of presence and encouragement. They assist at Holy Trinity Cathedral when they are in Port-au-Prince, teach confirmation classes and at the Seminary, and serve on diocesan committees.

Altar Linen Project

The Altar Linen Project, which sells handmade altar linens made by women in Haiti, is currently on hiatus. We hope to resume this work in the future.

Donations For Haiti

Donations are needed to cover the expenses for the Sisters and those they serve, including those at the Foyer Notre Dame. Renting housing that is safe and adequate for the needs of the Sisters is very expensive. Other expenses include:

  • Communication needs
  • Production of vocations materials to increase the number of Sisters
  • Preparation and screening plus training and support for the next postulant
  • Transportation expenses
  • Education expenses for the Sisters
  • Legal fees for immigration issues

The Sisters of St. Margaret
50 Harden Hill Road
P. O. Box C
Duxbury, MA 02331-0605

All checks should be made out to: The Society of St. Margaret

You may also make a donation online by clicking on the Donate button to the upper right of this page.

Contacting Haiti

For more information on the work of the Sisters in Haiti, contact:

Please be patient when calling or emailing Haiti. Electricity is often shut off and cell phone service is very sporadic.