We believe all people should have the opportunity to create a life they deserve.
Cite Soleil is known to be one of the poorest and most dangerous cities in the entire world. Everyday, thousands of kids living in the region wake up unaware of when or where their next meal will come from, and unfortunately some of these same kids won’t have a place to call home. This type of poverty often prohibits children, teens and young adults from what is important such as family, community, school, athletics, arts and just simply being a kid. With nowhere else to turn, many kids and young adults join gangs. By providing kids a positive path and give them an optimistic outlook of the future, we can promote the important aspects in life. Sprint to Cite Soleil was founded in 2016 by two high school sophomores, Sam Shapiro and Jack Moe. In 2013, Sam’s family adopted a 15 year old boy from Cite Soleil Haiti, sparking his interest to learn more about the region. In June of 2015, Curious to learn more about where his brother grew up, Sam went to Cite Soleil for his first time. Prior to going, he started a temporary fundraiser called “Sprint to Cite Soleil” to help support an organization that sponsors kids in the area for both school and soccer. While visiting and walking through Cite Soleil, he saw so many young children wandering the streets in desperate need of change. One day, as he walked through the neighborhood where his brother had grown up, Sam spotted a run down basketball court. He imagined what it would be like for kids to be able to play basketball on that court, and how athletics could be used to positively inspire kids and steer them away from gangs and violence. This abandoned court is what ultimately sparked the idea of what Sprint to Cite Soleil is today. Upon returning to America and sharing his story and idea with friends and family, Sam’s friend Jack Moe became intrigued and asked to learn more. Together they pondered the possibilities of how to work with the community of Cite Soleil to improve lives. After numerous emails and Skype calls with a local haitian peace leader and the president of Cite Soleil basketball, Sam and Jack made the decision to turn these ideas into reality. In June of 2016, they made their first trip together down to Cite Soleil together, where they connected with a range of people and helped organize what the Sprint to Cite Soleil basketball program is today. In July of 2016, Sprint to Cite Soleil became an official 501c3 recognized organization. Today Sprint to Cite Soleil is a basketball program that works alongside the community of Cite Soleil, Haiti to inspire, empower, and create peace. Joseph Sadrack, a Cite Soleil peace prize winner and basketball president, is our in country director and makes sure the program is running smoothly in Haiti. The kids enrolled into the Sprint to Cite Soleil basketball program practice multiple times a week (depending on if school is in session) in a school courtyard and are trained by 10 fabulous coaches. The kids enrolled in the program receive clean water every practice and once a week are served a homemade meal prepared by the 4 outstanding cooks we have hired. Along with the actual Sprint to Cite Soleil program, the Sprint to Cite Soleil team was able to fix up the initial abandoned basketball that inspired the whole organization. This basketball court is open to everyone and is a great place for kids young adults to improve their skills and just have fun.
Sam Shapiro - President
Sam is a 18 year old high school student who enjoys spending his time on the soccer field, being with his family, and hanging out with his friends. Sam first came up with the idea of creating a non-profit organization in Haiti after connecting with his adopted brother, and visiting where he grew up in Haiti for the first time. He is very excited to visit Haiti again, and is looks forward to developing his first organization.
Jack Moe - President
Jack is a 17 year old high school student who loves to spend time playing basketball, and spending time with family and friends. Jack was told about idea of helping out Sam and his family to make change in Haiti, and became involved this year. He is extremely excited to visit Haiti for the first time and looking forward to the change that can be made.
Stephanie Shapiro - Acting CEO
Stephanie is a parent of 4 boys who along with her husband David, got involved in Haiti after meeting some children who came to Minnesota to play in a soccer tournament. In an effort to help the children in Haiti, they met and adopted a 15 year old child from Cite Soleil, Haiti. They continue to stay involved and are excited to see their son Sam take action after he visited in June of 2015.
Excited to support my son’s vision and support the community of Cite Soleil, Haiti!
I have been passionate about the Haitian community and made many impact trips over the years. I’m excited to connect Sam and Jack to a beautiful community and people of Cite Soleil.
Excited to support my son’s vision and support the community of Cite Soleil.
After meeting the children of Cite Soleil, I’m excited to help Jack and Sam build a meaningful program to help these amazing people.
I founded the Cite Soleil Basketball Team at a time when Cite Soleil was divided in a major territory battle. I have a passion for bringing young men from across Cite Soleil together and work to challenge the negative stigma of Cite Soleil.
5215 Morgan Avenue South Minneapolis, MN 55419