Marymount University senior Chardelle Moore
(back row center, with sash) and fellow Marymount students
at Haitian Embassy after delivering six carloards of supplies. Full-size photo.
Bags of critical supplies collected and donated
by Marymount students to the Embassy of Haiti. Full-size photo.
The entire world is responding to the human suffering in Haiti,
but for many in our area including Marymount University senior Chardelle
Moore, the tragedy struck close to home.
Chardelle, a Communication major, is a native of the Commonwealth
of Dominica, an island nation in the Caribbean, but her family immigrated
to the United States and now resides in Springfield, Virginia. She
is also the current Miss Caribbean Metro USA. Until last week's
devastating earthquake, she saw her public role as promoting and
bringing knowledge of Caribbean culture to the DC metropolitan area.
But, once the magnitude of the disaster in Haiti became evident,
Chardelle says: "I had to use my title and the public forum
it gives me to make a difference in some way."
As a member of the Caribbean Professional Network, Chardelle helped
to organize a drive for survival items, which were collected at
the Haitian Embassy on Sunday, January 17. Tapping into her Marymount
network, Chardelle enlisted the aid of fellow students and the Marymount
administration, all of whom worked together to collect six carloads
of supplies in a few short days.
"It was amazing!" she exclaims. "I worked with Marymount's
Residence Life, the Admissions office, the African Caribbean Student
Association, the Black Student Alliance, local chapters of Delta
Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., and lots of Marymount students to collect
and deliver all kinds of baby items, formula, toiletries, bandages,
Responsible for organizing the clothing donations, she found that
her beauty pageant sash drew lots of interest. "But, what really
overwhelmed and moved me," she explains, "was that people
just came together, regardless of race, creed, or whatever. Underneath
it all, we are all united in helping the earthquake victims."
The Young Caribbean Professional Network is currently working with
the Embassy of Haiti to get these supplies sent as soon as it's
logistically possible. Chardelle is realistic and notes that the
needs of the Haitian people will continue long after the most pressing
rescue and health issues are addressed.
Chardelle and others in the Marymount community are continuing
to identify additional opportunities to help the Haitian people.
At Sunday Masses on January 17, Campus Ministry collected over $1,700
for Catholic Relief Services, and the following day at home basketball
games, the Saints collected more than $1,000 for the American Red
Cross. Marymount held an interfaith prayer service this week, and
another collection for Catholic Relief Services will take place
on January 22 at the University's annual celebration of the life
of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.