Kathryn Hobgood Ray
The Tulane School of Social Work will host a special “RaRa for Haiti” benefit walk and cultural celebration on Saturday, May 22 beginning at 9 a.m. in Audubon Park. Participants will receive handkerchiefs, make flags and take second line lessons until 10 a.m., when the “RaRa for Haiti” begins on the Audubon Park jogging path near Saint Charles Ave. A small registration fee will benefit Haitian-related aid programs.
“RaRa for Haiti” is a celebration of Haiti"s hope, beauty and culture and a reminder that the Haitian community still needs rebuilding assistance following the catastrophic 2010 earthquake. A “RaRa” is a Haitian street parade often conducted through villages with people walking and dancing to the festival music of a RaRa band. Similar to the New Orleans tradition of second lines, the parades typically occur during Carnival Season but can happen at any time in celebration of life"s events.
Registration is $15 for adults, $7 for kids six-twelve years old, and free for kids five and under. All proceeds will go to Haitian-related aid programs Partners in Health and HeARTS with Haiti.
Partners in Health has been working in Haiti for more than 20 years. The organization has three goals -- to care for its patients, to alleviate the root causes of disease in communities, and to share lessons learned around the world. HeARTS with Haiti is a therapeutic arts-based program for children in Haiti. The program, which is being developed by faculty, staff, and students at the Tulane School of Social Work along with Haitian artists, was created in response to the Port-au-Prince earthquake. It is a collaborative effort among mental health professionals and artists in both Haiti and New Orleans to provide children a safe space to begin their healing process.
For more information and to register in advance, visit http://tulane.edu/socialwork/