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Second Congregational Church to Host Haitian Art & Handcraft Sale – Greenwich Free Press

Greenwich Free Press (https://greenwichfreepress.com/around-town/arts/second-congregational-church-to-host-haitian-art-handcraft-sale-193617/)
The Second Congregational Church will warm our senses over the weekend of February 10 to 12 by bringing over 200 original Haitian paintings and unique handcrafts to Greenwich.
Second Congregational Church is partnering with the Vassar Haiti Project to present a weekend sale that will celebrate Haitian art and culture and raise funds to support art, education, health, and sustainable development in villages in rural Haiti.
Over the past 21 years, the Vassar Haiti Project, based at Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, NY, has engaged college students in a global citizenship curriculum and has funded projects in Chermaitre, a remote mountain village in Northwest Haiti.  Funds are raised through the sale of Haitian art and donations. Vassar Haiti Project Co-Founder Dr. Andrew Meade explained, “We have provided a way for the artists to help the people of a village: It is Haitians helping Haitians. We serve as facilitators of this grand dance.”
The Haitian art sale is a collaborative effort between Vassar Haiti Project, the Second Congregational Church, and the Greenwich community.
This year, the Vassar Haiti Project will honor Sheri Chin and Gordon Ng who have lived in Greenwich for over 25 years and have two children, Alexandra, a Vassar Haiti Project Alum (Class of 2019), and Marcus, a junior at Colgate University. Sheri is the Head of Marketing for Galileo, a financial technology company. Gordon is a recently retired international finance executive who previously worked at Mastercard and American Express and currently serves as the Head of Finance for Second Congregational Church. They celebrate Vassar Haiti Project’s mission for a long-lasting and sustainable partnership with the village of Chermaitre and are so excited to bring Haitian art to the Greenwich community at Second Congregational Church. 
“Being a part of Vassar Haiti Project and working closely with our partners in Haiti has been a life-changing experience, and I’m so grateful to still be involved as an alumnus,” said Alexandra Ng. “My parents have been incredibly inspired by the student leaders and mission of Vassar Haiti Project since the moment they walked into their first art sale. They continue to be impressed by the significant progress Vassar Haiti Project is making today in enabling access to healthcare, clean water, food, and women’s empowerment efforts in Chermaitre. I’m excited to share the vibrant and magical culture of Haiti with Greenwich again and to celebrate my parents’ support of the project.”
“Second Congregational Church is thrilled to be welcoming the Vassar Haiti Project back to campus,” said Senior Minister Maxwell Grant.
“These students from Vassar College are passionate in their support for the people of Haiti, and eager to teach us about the incredible resilience and creativity that they encounter in their work there. They bring beautiful art for us to see, but the beauty of their relationships and commitment to service are just as inspiring,” Grantadded.
Sharing the beauty and talent of Haitian art with the Greenwich community will not only inspire you but shall spark your curiosity about why we care so much about Haiti!” echoes Laury Senecal, a VHP president, Class of 2023.
The art sale is free and open to the public, and all art and handcraft sales are 50% tax deductible. Opening hours of the sale are listed below. For more information, please call 845.797.2123 or visit www.thehaitiproject.org.
Hours are as follows:
Friday,     Feb. 10            6:30pm – 8:30pm (Opening Reception)
Saturday, Feb. 11         10:00am – 5:00pm
Sunday,   Feb. 12           9:00am – 2:00pm
Second Congregational Church
139 East Putnam Avenue
Greenwich, CT 06830
www.2cc.org
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Board director Larry Simon noted that the funds may not take the place of the Town’s regular appropriation and will be under the control of the Board of Directors.
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“An HO allows additional uses, but it also allows for an increase in square footage in the building, up to 28,800 sq ft….Now there is 12,000 sq ft. …You’re having a Historic Overlay to save the building in perpetuity, but in 20 years the church could add an awful lot and redevelop to 28,000 sq ft.” – P&Z Commissioner Nick Macri
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