Infante, S.J. (left) speaks with Fr. Marat (right), pastor of the destroyed
Santa Rosa of Lima’s Church (background) in Leogane, Haiti. Photo by Kenneth J.
Gavin, S.J. for Jesuit Refugee Service/USA.
When University of San Francisco sophomores Kalie Patterson and Annie Tull returned to
campus after the Christmas holiday break, one of the first things they did was brainstorm
how they could help Haiti after a devastating earthquake there Jan. 12.
support from University Ministry Resident Minister Intern Stephen Gotfredson,
MA ’09, and Barbara St. Marie, assistant director of USF’s St. Ignatius
Institute, the idea of a Haiti relief bingo fundraiser, with dinner, raffle,
and auction was born.
Law Students Assist Haitians University of San Francisco School of Law students spent spring break
in Miami helping Haitians apply for temporary protected status (TPS) in
Students participated in cases involving immigration
intake, submission, and U.S. citizenship application. Before finalizing
applications, they spent three days in Miami’s Little Haiti handing out
knocking on doors, and conducting client interviews, said law student
"Volunteering in Miami helping Haitian nationals apply
for temporary protected status has been an incredibly educational and
experience," Start said.
The program, designed by the University of Miami School of
Law's Health and Elder Law Clinic, offered practical experience for USF
students while serving Haitians affected by January's earthquake.
inspiration for the fundraiser first come to Patterson and Tull when Patterson’s
father, a Presbyterian minister, called on his parishioners on the Sunday following
the temblor to give something up to help those in Haiti. “I'm Catholic but whenever I go to visit the Pattersons
we all go to church and Mr. Patterson's sermons are always moving,” Tull said.
fundraiser was a raging success, surpassing its goal of raising $10,000. More
than 350 people attended the Feb. 26 bingo event, buying more than 1,000 raffle
tickets. All told, the relief fundraiser brought in more than $18,000, which was
donated to Jesuit Refuge Service/USA. Among the dozens of bingo
prizes were a $100 gift card to Sports Basement, and raffle and auction prizes including
two Golden Gate Warriors tickets and a sailboat cruise on the San Francisco Bay
for six people.
the more than 35 businesses that donated to the cause was surprisingly easy. ”Once
we said Haiti, they were all about whatever it was we were doing,” Gotfredson
said. “The response we received from the San Francisco community was something
In the immediate wake of the earthquake, JRS has used
funds, such as those donated by the USF community, to provide emergency food
relief to about 50,000 Haitians and pay affiliated medical personnel to treat
about 4,500 Haitians injured in the quake and its aftermath. In the coming
weeks and months, JRS plans to provide trauma counseling and improve the
infrastructure of at least 12 educational centers by building new classrooms or
repairing school buildings damaged in the quake, according to its Web site.