...We are telling the story, using art: photography, music, and theater.
Border of Lights is a collective coming together to commemorate, collaborate and continue the legacy of hope and justice in the Dominican Republic and Haiti. We invite you to join us, and to think about the question:
What did they tell you about the massacre?
In 1937, Dictator Rafael Leonidas Trujillo ordered the genocide of 10,000 - 20,000 ethnic Haitians along but not limited to border towns on the Dominican side of Hispañiola. The US Ambassador in Santo Domingo, R. Henry Norweb, described this moment in history as “a systematic campaign of extermination."
October 2012 marked the 75th anniversary of the 1937 Haitian Massacre. Border of Lights (BOL) brought to light this horrific tragedy with the help of generous donors and support from local partner organizations such as Solidaridad Fronteriza, Centro Bono, Mariposa Foundation, and the Dream Project. Collaborating within the U.S., Dominican Republic, Haiti and England, the team was able to commemorate the anniversary of the massacre through a weeklong series of events in Hispañiola.
The series of events were supported by a global community of students, educators, activists and humanitarians; along with acclaimed authors Julia Alvarez, Michele Wucker, Edwidge Danticat, and Junot Diaz. The commemorative activities were featured on the BBC, Deutsche Welle, NPR’s The Two Way, NPR Latino, Christian Science Monitor, Miami Herald, Caribbean Journal, International Business Times, Miami Times, Alaska Dispatch and Semana. Border of Lights brought together a committed collective that created a tangible yearlong advocacy campaign to commemorate the massacre.
Below are the fully funded 2012 projects:
• Art Installation (Dajabón, Dominican Republic)
• Borders of Light Monologues (New York, NY)
• Cross-country Vigils (Dajabón, Dominican Republic and Ouanaminthe, Haiti)
• Curriculum incorporation of toolkit at University of Redlands
• Park Beautification (Ouanaminthe, Haiti)
• Youth Education Forum (Dajabón, Dominican Republic)
• 2 Murals (Dajabón, Dominican Republic and Ouanaminthe, Haiti)
• 70 boys attending schools - ages 7-14 (Ouanaminthe, Haiti)
• 1,000 Seedling Planting (Ouanaminthe, Haiti)
Our work is not done! From October 4–6, 2013 Border of Lights will commemorate the Haitian Massacre once again, expanding the project’s scope and objective for the 76th Anniversary. The team and its partners will execute a series of cultural and educational events--including the beautification of a park, virtual vigil (stay tuned for more information on this grassroots vigil that allows for any and everyone to commemorate the massacre along with us), several art installations, BOL monologues, and a daylong comprehensive Youth Leadership Conference.
The Youth Leadership Conference will develop knowledge and skills related to self awareness, racial justice and inclusive leadership. This will be an intense, real-world civics program, designed for 150 students between the ages of 13 through 22. The objective of the workshop/break-out-sessions is to create budding advocates of tolerance and understanding through meaningful dialogue and hands-on exercises.
We look forward to having you join us in this transformational journey and creating a NEW CHAPTER of hope and justice in the Dominican Republic, Haiti and abroad. Exito y Prosperidad!
Risks and challenges
Borders of Lights seeks to bring awareness to the issue of discrimination and border solidarity and in doing so has the potential to be dangerous as many in the community are challenged by our call to action. This is one of the reasons why we work with other community groups - on the ground in both the Dominican Republic and Haiti. We move forward with our work and onto year two with the support of many who are depending on us to elevate their story.
If challenges are raised we are confident that together with community involvement we will find solutions. Last year we were asked if we were afraid of opening old wounds. Our response to this question was: Those who forget the past are doomed to repeat it. The DR-Haiti relationship is at a tipping point and we believe activities like Border of Lights bring us closer to solidarity and feeling less like two separate countries, and more like one island.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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