Letter: Haiti relief effort shouldn't be allowed to whither

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Following the devastating earthquake in Haiti (January 2010), many countries, organizations, and businesses pledged millions of dollars to assist in Haiti’s reconstruction. Here in Maine, a group of companies formed “Maine Line Haiti” and pledged to build 10 schools for the children of Haiti. This was a noble and praiseworthy promise. Eight months later, it was reported that Maine Line Haiti was abandoning their school project because the consultant they hired was unable to execute the plan. I would like to see this much-needed project resurrected.

I am a retired educator and building contractor. During the past 13 years, using personal funds, I have built in Haiti an eight-room school, 33 new homes, done major repairs to 120 homes, completed construction of an orphanage, and am planning to build a vocational school. The m.o. followed in carrying out these projects is simple and can easily be replicated. If Maine Line Haiti were to resurrect their school project, I would gladly volunteer my time and expertise, pro bono. I would also match all funds raised by Maine Line Haiti, dollar for dollar, up to $100,000 for this needed project.

Maine citizens are not quitters. Maybe Maine Line Haiti owes it to their employees and clients, as well as to the children of Haiti, to review their promise.

Coleman P. Gorham
South Portland

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