Wall Service Award 2004 Winners

David Simmons ’88

David Simmons ’88 used his Wall Award to establish a community center in the Cibao region of the Dominican Republic to support Haitian agricultural workers. Levels of service development, infrastructure, government and non-government presence, and livelihood opportunities in bateys (sugarcane worker communities) were low. The community Simmons assisted, located near the Sanjan River, made up for its lack of material resources through an abundance of human resources like the youths’ search for knowledge and a high level of social organization.

It’s two active community organizations, the Organization of Haitian Workers and Valiant Women, did not have access to a suitable meeting place. Simmons acted as a facilitator in the community center project by “working with the community to help them develop solutions to the challenges with which they’re faced.” He goes on to say, “The community is more than prepared to handle the day-to-day operations and maintenance of the center.”

Simmons co-founded a community-based organization, Zanmi Batey ('Friend of the Batey' in Haitian Kreyol), to help bring continued aid to this and other batey communities in the Cibao region.

Jane Hayes ’58

Jane Hayes ’58 will use her Wall Award to fund a halfway house for Brazilian adolescent males to help them stay sober. In Brazil, drugs and alcohol can be acquired easily and cheaply since this country is on the international drug route to Europe and the United States.

While in residence, the boys will study in public schools, attend vocational courses, and participate in cultural and sports activities available in the neighborhood and city. These opportunities will  prepare them to make the transition to participating citizens with all the rights, privileges, and obligations of other youth their age.

Hayes says, “without this specific project, the chances of long-term recovery are practically nil for these youth. Without this link between treatment and a return to society, they all return to the slums from which they came and the vicious cycle continues and in most cases, ends in death. We see clearly that in order to really save these young lives, long term support must be provided throughout adolescence and until healthy options are available.”

Learn more about the Wall Service Award and see other previous winners.