LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) — Respire Haiti was founded 10 years ago by Lafayette native Megan Boudreaux. After returning home from visiting Gressier, Haiti, for a mission trip, Boudreaux soon returned to Haiti to stay.
Boudreaux noticed the financial burdens placed on parents, causing their children to not be able to get a good education, food, or medical assistance.
Today, respire Haiti has more than 500 students at school each day, provides two hot meals to the students, and offers quality medical care to the students, families, and community through the love+1 medical clinic.
The organization’s physical therapy and mental health programs are the largest available in Haiti. Its sports programs include soccer and tennis, with one of its former players currently playing soccer at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette on full scholarship.
“This fundraiser that we are having is a 10-year celebration kind of celebrating how we’ve grown from a tiny little mom and pop organization to a huge school,” said Boudreaux.
Boudreaux says it’s been two years since she’s been back to Haiti due to the pandemic. She visited home back in 2020 to host the fundraiser, it was canceled and travel restrictions were implemented.
Although she’s not physically present to help students, staff, and medical professionals. Her team says all of the skills the Haitians have learned through the program is what’s keeping them afloat.
“It’s the Haitians in our community that really are the leaders. We really just watched the organization grow and thrive when the Haitians are at the head. That’s so important for us here in the U.S. to be able to share about what they’re doing and how they have become amazing leaders in their community and are changing the lives in their community.”
The fundraiser starts at 6:30 p.m. tonight. It is open to the public and will be held at the City Club in River Ranch. Tickets can be purchased online here.