Imagine you’ve lost your home and all your possessions, and you & your family have nowhere to go. You find yourself in a camp where all your neighbors and friends and everyone there have also lost EVERYTHING. And when the sun sets, there are no lights… night after night.
Globally, 1.9 billion people (yes, with a ‘b’) are without light or electricity. And 3.8 million kids a YEAR die due to the resulting use of kerosene.
In 2010, a massive earthquake devastated Haiti, the catastrophic effects of which still influence Haitians’ daily lives seven years later. A resulting cholera epidemic killed more than 9000 people and sickened more than 700,000. And, as if to add insult to injury, Hurricane Matthew just killed more than 900, destroyed more than 200,000 homes & dozens of cholera treatment centers, and left 1.4 million Haitians in dire need of clean water, food, and medicine. Complicating matters, a crippled infrastructure and frequent black outs throw thousands into darkness and stall recovery efforts.
The mission in Haiti is critical & urgent.
And we’re going to help! Insanely talented singer-songwriters Ruby Stewart and Alyssa Bonagurra, as the band, The Sisterhood, will lead our collaboration and help us write an anthem to send light to Haiti!
And Ruby’s dad – wait for it – yes, Sir Rod Stewart will join the duo in NYC on May 15th to perform our song at a star-studded fundraiser at the glorious and very socially responsible InterContinental New York Barclay Hotel!
Rod, Ruby & Alyssa will also record the song with some very special guests (think a modern day “We Are The World”!) and the proceeds will send SoLight Design lights to Haiti and other places lacking light.
Alice Min Soo Chun is the inventor of the SolarPuff, a tiny collapsible solar light with some serious power – 8 hours of sunlight generates 12 hours of very bright light that literally empowers people living off the grid. You can order these awesome little lights and send them to the area of your choice — and buy a couple for yourself at the same time! Solight-design.com
Dr. Alison Thompson is Ambassador to the Haitian Ministry of Environment and a full time global humanitarian volunteer. She is the Executive Director of Studio Unite and the founder of Third Wave Volunteers, where she leads the delivery of SoLight Design lights to off the grid places. Her work began during the Sept 11th, 2001 attacks in New York, and, for the last 16 years, she has run refugee and internally displaced persons camps and field hospitals in Sri Lanka, Haiti, Philippines, Greece (Syrian and Iraq refugees), Turkey, Nepal, Superstorm Sandy in NY and other disasters around the world.
Donna Karan called Alison “an inspiration” and Bono said, “Whatever you do, I hope your Third Wave Volunteers don’t start a band, otherwise I’ll be in deep trouble!”
The InterContinental New York Barclay’s Responsible Business plan follows the guidance of our parent company, IHG, and focuses on the Triple Bottom Line of Economic Prosperity, Social Responsibility and Environmental Protection. We aim for our sustainability strategy – which aligns with the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development – to become the benchmark of the hospitalityindustry.
Danielle Healy led this important collaboration at the InterContinental New York Barclay as part of the hotel’s initiatives for SDG #17, Partnerships for the Goals. To successfully achieve this SDG, the hotel aims to support Haiti through events, fundraising, and community partnerships.
Rachel Bandarenko was one of Hookist’s earliest supporters, introduced us to Danielle & Max Bandarenko at IHG (yes, it’s a family affair!), and her company, Fourth Wall Events, is producing the magnificent gala on May 15th.
Hookist is proud and honored to partner with all these incredible people who are truly making a difference in our world.