Local Church continues 30-year tradition of help for Haiti after earthquake

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PITTSFORD, N.Y. (WHEC) — For 51 years in a row, Powers Farm Market in Pittsford has teamed up with Saint Louis Church to raise money for people in need. For 30 of those years the money has gone directly to Haiti.

This year the situation is especially dire as the country is experiencing devastating aftermath from a 7.2 magnitude earthquake that hit earlier this month taking 2,200 lives.

Powers Farm Market grows and harvests corn then donates the corn free of charge to Saint Louis Church. A church committee sells it for a suggested donation of $5 per bag containing 6 ears of corn.

Marcia Mendola has been the chair of the Saint Louis Church fundraising committee for 40 years.

"The corn sale is a marvelous fundraiser of Saint Louis Church,” said Mendola. “Corn is planted and harvested and brought to church by the Powers Family Farm."

From Mendola’s team in Pittsford, the money goes to Saint Damien Pediatric Hospital in Haiti, where Phadoul Amisial is a Staff Manager. At Saint Damien, finances are never a barrier to care.

"The hospital, the Saint Damien Hospital, I would say that is a place where the poorest of the poor can come, and they receive treatment free-of-charge," said Amisial.

Saint Damien is located in Port-au-Prince, about 80 miles from the area of Haiti hardest hit by the recent earthquake. It’s the only pediatric hospital in the country, and it serves about 90,000 patients every year. Amisial and his team are expecting to receive patients injured by the earthquake soon.

"We will have a lot of children with pneumonia, we will have a lot of children with gastroenteritis, and furthermore we will have a lot of children with malnutrition," said Amisial. Many of the conditions his team treats are a result of poor living conditions in the poverty-stricken country.

The Saint Louis Corn Sale typically raises about $5,000 for Haiti every year. That’s enough to cover the cost of about 500 emergency room visits. The sale also has an anonymous donor who promises to match all proceeds raised.

"It’s your donation, the donation of Saint Louis, help us to continue to give care to the children," said Amisial. "The donation also is the lung of the hospital who help us to breathe every single day."

This year’s corn sale will take place at Saint Louis Church located at 64 South Main Street in Pittsford the weekend of September 11 and 12.

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Below is a bulletin entry from the church about the event:

St. Louis 51st Annual Corn Sale


EAT delicious CORN so sick kids at ST. DAMIEN PEDIATRIC HOSPITAL can survive!

After all Masses here on September 11 and 12, the Powers Farm Family on Marsh Rd. will for the 51st year bring their freshly harvested corn to church for us to sell to raise money for St. Damien Pediatric Hospital in Port-Au-Prince. (a 501c3 entity)

The corn will be bagged with 6 ears each.
Suggested donation: 1 bag of 6 ears = $5.
If donating by check—please make it payable: St. Louis and write Haiti in the memo line

We promise it will be the best tasting corn of the season:
because it was planted months ago, nurtured, and harvested before each mass with love;
and then generously donated pro bono to St. Louis in support of Haiti’s only children’s hospital
free to the indigent and one of only 4 Neo-natal units in all of Haiti.

If you cannot join us at church that weekend, please pray for our parish friend, Passionist priest and physician Fr. Rick Frechette as he does as much humanly possible to lessen the suffering of those affected by the recent horrific earthquake only 78 miles from St. Damien Hospital.

More info, call Marcia Mendola cell 585-309-7263