SHAKIRA TO BUILD SCHOOL IN HAITI

PORT-AU-PRINCE - Colombian pop star Shakira met child survivors of Haiti's earthquake as her charity prepared to build a school in the disaster-stricken Caribbean country.

PORT-AU-PRINCE - Colombian pop star Shakira met child survivors of Haiti's earthquake as her charity prepared to build a school in the disaster-stricken Caribbean country.

The singer, who has already joined Hollywood actors and other global celebrities to raise funds for the victims of the January 12 earthquake, flew into the wrecked Haitian capital Port-au-Prince aboard a private jet.

At the planned site of her Barefoot Haiti school, Shakira met about 100 children, some of whom danced to her songs. She then toured a camp housing 50000 people on a golf course. There, she met US actor Sean Penn, whose own charity is also helping victims.

"We've come to make all the preparations to be able to start building a Barefoot school here in Haiti," she said.

She said the school would be modelled on similar establishments created by her Pies Descalzos (Barefoot) Foundation, a charity that provides education, nutrition and psychological support to over 6000 Colombian children displaced by violence.

"We think we can employ what we've learned (in Colombia) here, apply it in this country which needs it so much at the moment."

The school would be built and run with other non-governmental organisations.

The Haiti quake, the deadliest natural disaster in modern history, may have killed more than 300000 people, the Haitian government says. It also left more than a million people homeless, many of them young orphans.

"We need to think about this country's future of this country and how Haiti's children can be useful to their societies tomorrow . Education is one of the fundamental tools," she said. - Reuters

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