Helping children in Haiti

What she thought might just be another office job turned out to be a way to help Haitian orphans and make a real difference in the world for JCCC alumna Julie Glowacki.

Glowacki graduated from Johnson County Community College’s business office technology program with an administrative assistant associate’s degree. She now works with the non-profit organization Danita’s Children based in Orlando, Fla.

The goal of Danita’s Children is to improve the lives and living conditions of Haitian children, especially the 8 percent of all children in Haiti without parents.

“Through my network, I learned of a position within Danita’s Children. No one seemed to know what the position was, only that it was in an office and they were looking for someone with ‘office skills,’” she said.

Due in large part to the skills she learned while at JCCC, she got the job. But not all her work has been in the office. She recently traveled to Haiti with Danita’s Children founder and CEO Danita Estrella-Watts to learn first-hand what the organization is doing to help Haiti.

According to the non-profit’s website, Danita’s Children

  • Provides homes for 110 orphans. More homes are being built so that number can increase.
  • Funds a school for 350 Haitian students.
  • Runs a food program that provides 18,000 meals a month.
  • Operates a Christian church serving 500 people.
  • Finds medical care for Haitian children. A dental clinic is up and running, a medical clinic is being built and a children’s hospital is planned when funds are available.

Glowacki is project coordinator for the Won by One sponsorship program for Danita’s Children. Donors agree to give $29 a month to sponsor a specific child in Haiti, and that money is used to feed, clothe and medically treat that child.

“I oversee the sponsorship program and am heavily involved in project management,” Glowacki said. “I could not be happier here and am daily using the skills the whole [business office technology] department at JCCC taught me. Really, there is no class that I took at JCCC that is not playing into my success today.”

Glowacki said she uses Excel and Microsoft Word daily, and she learned to use both of those programs at JCCC. “I have friends who have graduated with their bachelors’ degrees in business who are working in things like telemarketing because instead of learning practical skills, they learned business theories so they don’t know how to do anything and can’t get a job.

“The first two weeks on my job, Danita emailed me to tell me how great I was doing and that she had been told I was possibly the best hire they’d ever done,” she said. “I attribute what they are seeing to my education at JCCC.”

For more information on business office technology, consult the website or contact Mary Hedberg, department chair, at 913-469-8500 ext. 3109.