BROOKLYN, NY – New York State Senator Jesse Hamilton partnered with Light the World Foundation on July 9 to for the 6th Annual Arts and Music Festival in Brooklyn.

Light the World Foundation’s annual concerts have become an integral part of Brooklyn’s summer festivities and a staple in the Haitian Community, bringing together a range of gospel music and expressive art. Proceeds from the festival will go towards the foundations’ two signature programs; the Mentorship Program that provides participants with practical life skills and tools that are usually not taught as a part of their academic curriculum; and, scholarship programs that are offered both in Haiti and in the United States. The scholarships are awarded based on merit as measured by financial need, academic performance, and extracurricular activities.

“It is my pleasure to partner with the Light the World Foundation in presenting this community event with global reach. Not only do we have an opportunity to come together and enjoy great music, great food, and a great community, we also advance education for young people in our community and in Haiti through Light the World’s outstanding scholarship program,” said Hamilton. “I look forward to what promises to be another outstanding celebration of our community’s rich heritage.”

General Body of Christ Orchestra Photo Credit: Light The World Foundation Facebook

The night’s event opened up with a performance by the General Body of Christ Orchestra led by Band Director Rosemond Charles. The festival also featured Haitian American performers, including singer /songwriter David Metayer and One Accord, gospel singer Debbie Rayme, the Berean Community Drumline of Crown Heights, Christian Cultural Center -CCC step teams Nubien Gents and Feminie Fire. A poetry piece about the Black Lives Matter was performed by artist “A Cup of Jo.”

Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke, New York State Assemblywoman Latrice Walker, joined Hamilton at the event. Recipients for Light the World Scholarship Award were also announced during the festival. The four scholarship winners were Brianna Goldstein, Kiara Ortega, Christina Charles, and Lamia Rahman.

“Receiving the Light the World Foundation Scholarship was both unexpected and rewarding,” said Rahman,  “It will enable me to pay for tuition and books when I enter as a freshman at Columbia university to pursue a degree in neuroscience and behavior. Thanks to the LTWF, when I become a doctor, I will be able to support Haitian children and children around the world who can’t afford an education.”
“I feel extremely honored and grateful to be one of this year’s scholarship recipients because with the expenses of college rising each year, I’ll have support from LTWF to pursue my educational and career goals,” said Ortega.
Photo Credit: Light the World Foundation Facebook
“I feel truly honored and blessed to be a recipient of this scholarship,” said Goldstein. “This will motivate me to keep working hard this upcoming school year and do my best in the nursing program at Hartwick College.”

The Light the World Foundation has disbursed over $90,000 to help victims of the January 2010 earthquake and educate children in several communities in Haiti, including schools both in the capital as well as in the countryside. To-date, Light the World’s efforts have impacted over 400 children and youth both in the United States and Haiti. Most recently, Light the World has funded the education of 17 students in Haiti in addition to the 15 scholarship awards already being funded.

“Being one of the selected recipients has increased my level of confidence,” said Charles. ” With this achievement, I’ve learned to not settle for the average.”

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