*Wyclef Jean appeared at a gathering in Harlem Wednesday to discuss his group’s relief efforts in Haiti following a catastrophic 7.0 earthquake and to call on the White House for continued action.
With the Rev. Al Sharpton and prominent New York black clergy in attendance, Jean said he is working with his Yele Haiti foundation to deliver cooked meals, water and medical assistance to survivors. He also urged President Barack Obama to make a “sustainable commitment” to rebuild the island nation during his State of the Union address tonight.
The artist said any aid to the country needs to include not only the tools but the knowledge for Haitians to be able to rebuild their country for the 21st Century.
“I need you all to bring the rod. I need you all to bring the boat. I need you all to bring the people that’s going to teach them how to get on that boat, how to take that boat out to sea, how to fish and how to bring that fish back for their family,” said the 37-year-old Grammy-award winner.
The black clergy announced their support of Jean’s efforts beyond the immediate crisis, and Sharpton called him “the cultural and social personification” of Haitian resilience and strength.
“Our concern is that, first and foremost, as a lot of the cameras leave Haiti, that the attention of the world not leave it,” the civil rights leader said.