Sabrina-Landy Cyprien

Agronomy – Class of 2014

Sabrina shared a crowded apartment with almost a dozen people in Port-au-Prince before joining HELP. While her mother, a street vendor selling phone cards, provided what funds she could, it was barely enough to cover Sabrina’s transportation to school let alone tuition or books.

Sabrina was awaiting her first day of university when the earthquake ravaged the Haitian capital, destroying the Quisqueya campus along with it. While waiting for school to reopen, HELP placed Sabrina and several of her classmates in volunteer positions with the United Nations Office of the Special Envoy for Haiti, led by former President Bill Clinton, conducting focus groups on the reconstruction priorities of refugee camp residents. The Special Envoy presented the study’s findings at an international donors’ conference, where the UN noted Sabrina and her fellow HELP students’ clear and concise reporting, strong work as facilitators, and “motivation and reliability in completing this important work.”

Today Sabrina is thrilled to be back in school and back on track to completing her agronomy program. She now lives in HELP student housing, which she describes as a quiet, safe place to study. On a personal level, her experiences at HELP have allowed her to gain a sense of responsibility for her own future, and taught her how to function as part of a tight-knit community. Looking to the future, she is intent on pursuing a career in reforestation, combating one of Haiti’s chief problems. “Since many people can’t afford gas, they chop down trees for firewood instead,” she explains. Her dream for the country is for “all Haitians to live in a healthy environment.”