Young people celebrate and document hope in post-earthquake Haiti

22 Sep 2010

Port-au-Prince— In commemoration of the International Day of Peace, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Haiti’s Ministry of Youth, Sports and Civic Action and the United Nations Population Fund celebrated the crucial role Haitian children and young people have played in the country’s reconstruction and in the reduction of violence by inviting over a thousand of them to the Sylvio Cator stadium yesterday for a day of track and field contests, football matches and cultural and musical exhibitions.

The celebration aimed to encourage a spirit of tolerance, friendship, fair play and mutual support among young people, by highlighting how non-violence and peace can lead to a better reconstruction of Haiti.

During the event, about 40 teenagers from Avenir and Petión Ville Settlement Camps who took part in a photography workshop organized by the UNDP had the chance to exhibit photos they had taken depicting hope in their lives at the camps. Through their photos they wanted to show how peace and positive actions can contribute to a better future.

“Youth is essential to ensure sustainable development and they must play an important role in the reconstruction of the country. UNDP wants to increase its support for them to achieve this goal by providing spaces for them to think, propose and get engaged within their communities”, said Maureen Mayne, project coordinator for the UNDP Community Violence Reduction project.

Many participants said the initiative was an opportunity to express their talents and creativity in a constructive way.

"This program is very rewarding because it inspires us to do good things," said one of the participants, Angelo Desravines.

See the exhibited photos and pictures from the event: