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Strong women come in many types, and at the Academy for Peace and Justice, that includes powerful Athletes. With a year of hard work behind them, a group of basketballers is taking their talent all the way to the Haiti Olympic Stadium!

Over the last year, the Academy has been ramping up its sports department because we believe that human security also means physical health, confidence, and a knowledge of one’s own strength. With the hire of a new basketball coach and former pro athlete, Coach Gethro, our students are jumping at the opportunity to show their skills and their teamwork.

Coach Gethro says: “Practicing a sport is very important it gives you a sense of responsibility and leadership and along the way your teammates become your family, you gain lasting friendships and a support system.”

Developing these skills is a huge asset benefits for the Academy. Many of our students live in dangerous neighborhoods in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, often with challenging family circumstances.

Over 61 young women between the ages of 11 and 17 have been training since September of 2018, and their hard work is paying off. The Academy’s Senior Team has already played 7 games against other highly competitive teams, winning 5 of the 7 matches, and scoring 72 points in just one game.

The Academy team is even attracting national attention! All eyes will be on Thesly Cadesca Jean, a local star and the MVP of the team, who was able to score 36 points in a single match. Sport fans are anticipating a great match as Thesly and her teammates travel to compete in the Haiti Olympic Stadium.

But our team is not based on any individual, but on teamwork, showing that each of our skills is stronger when we work together. For Coach Gethro, it is not just about teaching the students how to play basketball. The Academy for Peace and Justice sports program also gives them a space where they can have fun!

And the high number of participants attests to his success…

As Coach Gethro says: “I want to give everyone a chance to play, the realities of life of these young women are so difficult that to be on the basketball court is one of the moments that they enjoy the most.”

On the court, we are allowing our girls a chance to be themselves and carry that freedom with them into their daily lives.

Hello New York! APJ is looking for talented interns for Summer 2018. An internship with us is a great way to gain experience in the non-profit sector and learn more about our programs. APJ’s commitment to social good makes up an integral part of our work serving the poorest communities in Haiti with programs in education and training in creative industries, while expanding our reach globally, partnering with effective local organizations to give young women access to quality education. At APJ we are united by a passion for the arts, a belief in the transformative power of education, and creative minds.

If you are motivated, passionate, detail-oriented, and interested in our work please click here and apply today!

Thank you, Los Angeles!

The energy at our second annual Songs from the Cinema event was electric and reminded us how incredible and important our community is. None of the work we do would be possible without the continuous support of Bovet 1822 and the generosity of everyone who attended and continues to support APJ. This year’s benefit was hosted by Susan Sarandon, Olivia Wilde, Garcelle Beauvais, Jimmy Jean Louis, Josie Maran, and David Belle and we are so thankful for their dedication. We were fortunate to have 2011 Graduate from the Artists Institute Keziah Jean and out Country Director Erlantz Hyppolite join us from Haiti.

Our friend and music legend Jackson Browne created and curated performances of iconic songs from the history of cinema in celebration of Oscar week. The spectacular performances by Jackson Browne, Adam Sandler, Rufus Wainwright, Simone Baker, Paul Beaubrun, Khamal Iwuanyanwu of Get Lit, Molly Lewis, Petra Haden, Bill Frisell, Z Berg, Blake Mills, Leslie Mendelson, Val McCallum as Beau Shit, Deborah Rennard, Alethea Mills, Sharlotte Gibson, Chavonne Stewart with The Hot Club of LA and surprise guest T Bone Burnett blew us all away. The night was the perfect kick-off benefit before the Academy Awards.

We are incredibly thankful for all those who came together for this intimate night of music and philanthropy to facilitate APJs mission of encouraging peace and social justice, working to alleviate poverty around the world.

Thank you again, LA. Join us next year!

To see exclusive APJ photos from the evening, which we encourage you to post and tag with @artistsforpeace @bovet1822 #songsfromthecinema click here.