If there ever was a good moment to help build a new Haiti, now is the perfect time. We are at a unique moment in history to bring Haiti in the realm of development. Throughout the country, one can feel the pulse of the people beating to the tune of real change. Now, how we go about bringing that change is totally up to us.
Skepticism and cynicism are definitely not the way, and we should not let them deter us from getting involved. I honestly believe that each Haitian individual has a civic duty to give something back to beloved homeland. We all owe Haiti everything, even if we did not become successful in Haiti.
I’m ready to play a greater role in promoting a new era in Haitian history. The time for fear has all but evaporated. We need to engage in the debates that will form the backbone of our new Haiti. We need to move from being players on the sideline to become fully active on the field. Haiti is crying for our help, and we must come to the rescue.
There is not a single person alive today, who can carry all the burden of Haiti alone. It is only through a collective effort that we will be able to bring realistic and productive change to Haiti. In this light, I am calling you all friends and children of the beloved Haiti to join me in a movement for a better Haiti by 2015.
I am aware that 2015 is only six years away, and many of you might be asking what substantive change can really take place in such a short time in a perilous country as Haiti. You have all your right to be pessimistic about the timeframe, but do not be discouraged by the enormity of the troubles facing our country. I honestly believe that if we are working collectively toward the same end goal, we can start seeing a change in Haiti by 2015.
The procedure on how to proceed with such a movement is simple. First and foremost, this is not my movement. It is, in my reflection, what I think our country so desperately need today. We need to engage the subconscious of every citizen. We need a cultural revolution, where the average Haitian will move from being idle to being proactive. We need a shift in our mentality as a people. It is easy to point out the more pressing need of Haiti, but no actual change can take place if we don’t start by changing our mentality.
A year ago, when I wrote my first column for this newspaper about changing our mentality, it did not really resonate with me that it was indeed our biggest issue as a nation. Today, I’m convinced that the battle for turning Haiti from being the poorest nation in the Caribbean to reclaim its title as the region’s pearl, would need for us to change our mentality.
I’m proposing that we start the revolution by motivating our neighbors who might not be too interested in the future of Haiti. We have to move from talking the good talk to actually invest our time and money into actions that could benefit the country. The movement Haiti 2015 is all about turning ideas into reality. It is an apolitical movement that is aiming at engaging all the social fabric of our nation. It is not a movement only for the betterment of the poor Haitians, but also a movement to include the wealthy class. The movement for a better Haiti by 2015 is for all Haitians regardless of social, educational or economical status. The time to include all Haitians in activities that are aiming at making Haiti a better country has arrived.
I am not presenting anything new or even anything that has not been tried before, but I am approaching my involvement in this movement as a covenant with Haiti. I believe that I have nothing to lose, if I have to be the voice of those who are voiceless, the face of the faceless, the eyes of the blind, and the ears of the deaf. We are in the struggle together. We must lean on each other, as we are suffering collectively.
We can no longer wait and see what others will do for us. We must claim our nation, and elevate our dignity. It is not enough to be proud of being the first black republic of modern era, but we have a date with destiny to finish the fight of our ancestors. Haiti can be great. We can turn it into the land, where impossibility will be something of the past. We are strong enough to build our nation the way that we want.
I am extending an invitation to all of you who want to see a better Haiti to join the movement of Haiti 2015. You can read more about the movement by visiting www.haiti2015.com.
It is not only when there is money to be made that we should get involved. Our country needs all kind of help, and we are finally at a point where we can meet most of our country’s needs. All of you Haitian professionals at home or abroad, you too have a stake in a better Haiti. Together, we can make our forefathers, and the next generation proud. Our time for change has come; our moment to fundamentally take Haiti in new direction has arrived. Let put the fear of a few to bed, and reach out to the strength of our hope to build our new Haiti.
Ilio Durandis: Founder of Haiti 2015. www.haiti2015.com