Dupreen Scholarship Fund
The Duprenn Scholarship Fund is an initiative of SOJI that was established by board member Pastor Stan Doll. Dupreen is a young man from Haiti who needs the financial support to attend college in the U.S.A. He has been accepted into Shasta College in Redding California and plans on majoring in Computer science. His ultimate goal is to pour into Haiti, his home country, and into the neighborhood where he grew up. For more information, please click here and visit the GoFundMe page.
Dupreen has recently started a program in his neighborhood for the street children, who are often known as the “Vouzon kids.” In Creole, “Vouzon” means “Go away.” These children have nothing, and are extremely poor. For mere survival, they often beg from people on the street for food and basic necessities. They are considered nuisances and the affluent that they beg from will often yell at them using the words, “Vouzon! Vouzon!” Translated as “Go away! Go away!”
When hungry and desperate simply for a morsel of food or a drink of clean water, and receiving little to no compassion and a biting rebuke, the children begin to believe that they are worthless, and sadly, this becomes their identity - the “Vouzon Kids” or, the “Go away Kids.”
Growing up, Duprenne was one of those children, and although he has had many accomplishments to be proud of, including graduating from high school, he still battles with that label and struggles with the emotional scars those words left behind. He wants to break that curse from over himself and the children that live in his neighborhood.
Each week, he invites the boys and girls from his neighborhood, Delmas 75 in Port Au Prince, to meet with him and a few other volunteers to learn Bible stories, play games, be encouraged to go to school, and to have some cookies and juice, which is a rare treat for them. They show them love and acceptance, which sadly is rare for them as well.
Duprenne and the adult volunteers empower the children to realize they are NOT “go away” children, rather, they have tremendous value and purpose. Each week they mentor over 30 children ages 5 to 16,
so they can dream and cast vision for their futures. It is a powerful program, and grows each week.