Original works of art, handcrafts and accessories by Haitian artists and artisans will be featured at an annual art sale and auction this weekend at Vassar College.
The Vassar Haiti Project’s annual event will be held Friday thrugh Sunday on the second floor of the Main Building. Proceeds from the event support a number of programs in Chermaitre — a mountain village in Haiti unreachable by road.
Handcrafts start at $5, and paintings at $50. All sales are 50-percent tax deductible.
Founded by Andrew Meade, director of International Services at Vassar College, and his wife, Lila, the Vassar Haiti Project has raised more than $1.5 million since 2001, according to a statement from organizers. The organization engages college students in a global citizenship curriculum and its fundraising sales directly support the livelihood of hundreds of Haitian artists and artisans.
“VHP taught me the most useful skill of all, which is always to give of yourself to others,” Vassar alumna Anna Brashear said in the statement. “By giving my time, energy and passion to VHP, I became part of a family and dedicated community which strives to work together with a village in Haiti to make a positive difference.”
The organization counts on the success of its art sales to fund numerous life-sustaining projects, including a three-room medical clinic, a 75-member cooperative formed by village women looking to further support their families and the village, Chermaitre’s primary school that serves 300 children in kindergarten through sixth grade, reforestation, and water access and purification efforts.
The group makes trips twice a year to Haiti, taking with them Vassar students and other volunteers from the Hudson Valley.
“Going to Haiti with VHP during spring break of my sophomore year was unlike anything I had ever experienced,” said Jenna Amlani, a 2016 Vassar graduate. “I came out of that trip knowing that I wanted to devote my career to building a more just and equitable world.”
If you go
What: 17th annual Vassar Haiti Project benefit art sale and auction
When: Noon-7 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (live auction starts at 2 p.m.) Saturday; 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday
Where: Main Building, second floor, Vassar College, 124 Raymond Ave., Poughkeepsie
“For Your Eyes Only,” by Gabriel Coutard, an example of the artwork that will be for sale during the annual Vassar Haiti Project art sale and auction this weekend at Vassar .