Digital Library of the Caribbean (dLOC)
Protecting Haitian Patrimony Initiative (PHPI)
Update December 2010
The Digital Library of the Caribbean (www.dloc.com) Protecting Haitian Patrimony Initiative (PHPI),
organized by the Florida International University (FIU) Libraries and Latin American and Caribbean
Center, continues to provide much needed assistance to the damaged libraries and archives in Haiti. The
dLOC partner libraries and archives in Haiti have made significant progress and continue to work to
repair their facilities, restore their collections, and work to reopen to the public.
The libraries and archives still need your support so that they can re-open their doors and begin serving
the public. As the country faces the challenges of rebuilding, the Haitian heritage libraries and archives
hold many answers for today's leaders. And, when the young people of Haitian descent who grow up
through this rebuilding begin to look for answers, they will need these heritage collections to be available.
As you consider where to make your holiday donations, please consider supporting these important
libraries and archives. You can make online donations here: http://dloc.com/dlocl/haitianlibdonate.
PHPI Support for the Libraries/Archives
When established just after the earthquake, the PHP
Initiative established three goals: to encourage
collaboration, coordinate technical and in-kind assistance
and raise money to support recovery and preservation
projects in Haiti. PHPI has provided support for the
libraries as they worked to protect their collections and we
will continue to provide support moving forward into the
preservation phase. To date, PHPI has raised over $12,000
in donations and delivered computers and archival boxes
valued at $30,000. Donations, from a few dollars to a few
thousand dollars, have come from individuals and libraries
across the United States and the Caribbean. Below are three
examples of how institutions are organizing to fundraise for
the Haitian libraries and archives.
Elizabeth Chin, a Katherine Dunham specialist
from Occidental College, and University of Florida
students performed traditional Haitian dance at the
UF Hand in Hand Benefit Concert.
The University of Florida Center for Latin American Studies organized a benefit concert on
October 22, 2010, featuring music and dance performances celebrating the African diaspora in
Latin America and the Caribbean. In addition to a wonderful public performance and Haitian
dance workshops in the local schools, the concert raised over $2,000 to support PHPI. Several
groups in Gainesville, Florida also supported the event, including: the Brazilian Cultural Arts
Exchange (BCAE), the African American Studies Program, the Center for African Studies, UF's
George A. Smathers Libraries, the UF School of Theatre and Dance, and Studio Percussion.
The CARICOM Secretariat in Guyana, a dLOC partner, has organized local libraries to sell
PHPI bookmarks for $5 each. To date, CARICOM has raised $240 and continues to sell
bookmarks to support the Haitian libraries and archives.
Florida International University and the University of Miami plan to host a joint benefit for
the libraries/archives at the Little Haiti Cultural Center on February 17, 2011. Please mark your
Fundraising efforts continue to develop. Please consider organizing a local fundraiser to support the
libraries/archives. Contact the dLOC coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to plan a local event.
PHPI Shipment and Checks Arrive to Haiti
The first round of money disbursed to the Haitian libraries totaled
$3,830 and covered emergency supplies, compensation for food for
volunteers helping to recover documents immediately after the
earthquake, repairs to shelving for the National Library, National
Archives and the Saint Louis de Gonzague Library respectively.
PHPI sent its first shipment of in-kind donations, valued at
The donations, which included 35
computers from the FIU College of
Business, over 1,500 archival boxes
donated from the Society of Florida Sobe Export employees preparing
Archivists and Hollinger Metal Edge, and a the shipment for Haiti. August 2010
generator and books provided by the Haitian Heritage Museum, were delivered
to the National Library of Haiti on October 21, 2010. In addition to the
archival boxes from Hollinger, Florida State University, The Jim Moran
Foundation, the University of Florida and the University of Miami contributed
surplus archival supplies to send to Haiti. Donations of $3,500 covered the
Society of Florida Archivists shipping costs to deliver in-kind donations that valued $30,000.
and Hollinger Metal Edge
donated archival supplies. PHPI anticipates sending a second shipment of supplies to Haiti in early 2011,
October 2010 so contact email@example.com if you would like to discuss a possible contribution.
Preservation Supplies and Training
Preservation of the archival collections continues to be an important objective of dLOC and PHPI. In
July, a three person preservation team from the University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona, Jamaica,
provided a five day preservation workshop for the libraries and archives in Haiti. UWI, dLOC and
interested conservators are working together with the Haitian counterparts to extend this training. In
addition, through collaboration with Bradley Coleman, Command Historian, US Southern Command, the
University of the West Indies, the National Archives in Haiti and dLOC, the National Archives has
received $8,000 of support from the Pan-American Institute of Geography and History for equipment to
continue document preservation and digital preservation efforts. dLOC and PHPI continue to seek
funding and volunteers to support library and archival preservation work in Haiti.
Promoting Awareness of the Needs
PHPI presented the situation of the heritage libraries at several conferences this fall:
Latin American Studies Association Section on Scholarly Research and Resources
October 6-9, 2010 Holly Ackerman, Duke University, Gayle Williams, Florida International University,
Brooke Wooldridge, dLOC, led a discussion on the role of LASA in disaster assistance to libraries.
Haiti and the Americas Conference, Florida Atlantic University
October 21-23, 2010 Gayle Williams, Florida International University, presented the case of the Haitian
The Haitian Studies Association Conference
November 11-13, 2010 Haitian Libraries Today and their Role in Creating a Stronger Future was moderated
by Dominique Coulombe, Brown University, included Elizabeth Pierre-Louis, FOKAL, Ted Widmer, John
Carter Brown University and Brooke Wooldridge, dLOC. Francoise Thybulle, Director of the National Library
of Haiti, was scheduled to participate could not attend.
Updates of other Library/Archive Collaboration Efforts
The Smithsonian / US Blue Shield project is fully functional with assistance to art/museum
The International Blue Shield has secured a donation of books/shelving from Swiss
libraries. Agreement in place for a rescue center to be developed.
The American Library Association has able to successfully fundraise for the
Petit Goave municipal library, Pyepoudre community library and the Saint Martial Library.
FOKAL has funded repairs at the Saint Louis de Gonzague library.
Libraries without Borders should finish building a computer lab for access to international
databases for university students.
The French Foreign Ministry has promised to fund the construction of a 100 square meter library
from Saint Martial.
dLOC has raised monetary support ($12,000) and secured donations of computers and archival
boxes to the libraries/archives ($30,000).
OAS Pan American Institute for Geography and History to provide $8,000 in equipment to the
US National Archives and Records Administration will provide $5,000 in materials/equipment
support to the National Archives.
The National Library and Archives of the Dominican Republic have provided donations of
needed materials and supplies.
The John Carter Brown raised funding for the Saint Martial collection.
Haiti Union Library catalog Funding in development
The University of the West Indies, Mona, has provided training in Haiti and Jamaica for the
Other Caribbean Libraries have provided training to Haitian library staff as well.
Haiti, An Island Luminous Exhibit
dLOC is working not only to preserve the history in Haiti, but
also to promote an understanding of the complexity of Haitian
history through increased access to research resources. A new
online exhibit of 500 years of history in Haiti is in
development. The exhibit, entitled Haiti, An Island Luminous, 1\ -,
is currently under development and will launch in the Fall of-
2011. With contributions from current scholars and students, O/ i/c~(-l/Lw wik ou'
as well as excerpts from past publications, and direct links
providing free access to books, manuscripts and newspapers, this "guided tour" will pair expert
commentary and original documents to introduce users to five hundred years of Haitian history!
The Digital Library of the Caribbean (dLOC) is a cooperative of partners within the Caribbean and circum-
Caribbean that will provide users with access to Caribbean cultural, historical and research materials held in
archives, libraries, and private collections. dLOC comprises collections that speak to the similarities and
differences in histories, cultures, languages and governmental systems.