The IQAir family still mourns the loss of one of their own, Matt Vecere.
On March 10, 2019, Matt was on his way to Nairobi, Kenya from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to attend the United Nations’ annual Environmental Assembly Conference. Shortly after takeoff, Ethiopian Airlines flight 302 inexplicably lost altitude and crashed, killing all 157 people on board.
Matt had many gifts, especially as a writer and a surfer. But his greatest gift was giving of himself, especially to those in the direst of needs, as he did on his voyage to Haiti to pitch in and help after a devastating earthquake in 2010 took nearly half a million lives and left millions more impoverished, homeless, and hopeless.
His second home
Matt was fond of Haiti and its people, particularly the children at L’Orphelinat Notre Dame du Perpetuel Secours (Our Lady of Perpetual Help), an orphanage in Croix des Bouquets. Many who were housed at the orphanage had lost parents in the earthquake.
Like most of Haiti in the disaster’s aftermath, the orphanage struggled to find basic necessities. Matt and a coalition of others in the United States and Haiti worked with the non-profit Sustainable Orphanage for Haitian Youth to help provide the children with food, clothing, and bedding, and the orphanage with essential infrastructure like plumbing and electricity.
Matt continued to make voyages to Haiti and L’Orphelinat Notre Dame du Perpetuel Secour, which were privileged to have a visit from him in the month before his death.
Always looking for ways to help
As the co-founder of several non-profits helping communities gain access to resources and education, Matt was truly a humanitarian.
During his time as a writer for IQAir, Matt never hesitated to drop everything to assist others in need. When deadly wildfires ripped through Northern California in late 2018, Matt immediately made the 6-hour drive north from his home in Long Beach, California, to help distribute much-needed supplies to those left homeless.
And on that final voyage in 2019, he gladly volunteered to help bring the IQAir mission to the United Nations because it meant bringing hope for cleaner air to people around the world who needed it most.
In Matt's memory, help to continue his good works
Donations in honor of Matt from friends and family allowed for many improvements at the orphanage. In 2021, construction at the new L’Orphelinat Notre Dame du Perpetuel Secours was finally completed.
But the needs of the children are not. A new Go Fund Me campaign has been set up to help provide scholarships to the older children who want to expand their education at a secondary school, trade school or university – a vital next step in the full development of a stronger, more prosperous Haiti.
If you would like to donate to help these children, and keep Matt’s memory and his generous works flourishing, visit here.
Pictured: L’Orphelinat Notre Dame du Perpetuel Secours orphanage with a newly constructed building and vehicle for transportation.
Pictured: Staff and children from L’Orphelinat Notre Dame du Perpetuel Secours orphanage standing in the entryway to the new orphanage building.
Pictured: A teacher and children with brand-new uniforms and textbooks in a newly constructed classroom at the orphanage.
Pictured: Many of the orphanage’s children celebrating a meal in their new kitchen and dining area.
Pictured: Children at the orphanage sitting down for a feast during the Christmas holiday season.
Pictured: Staff and children at the orphanage with Christmas gifts.
Pictured: Staff at the orphanage taking inventory of bundles of clothing received thanks to generous donations to the orphanage.
Again, we humbly ask you to help us keep Matt’s dreams alive by supporting the children he loved. Click the link below to learn more about the orphanage, see what your donations have done for the orphanage so far, and give today:
To learn more about the orphanage and see what your donations have done so far, go to http://www.sustainableorphanagesforhaiti.com