"This is a real charity helping real people."
The Founders of The Selie Foundation
Ti Maille (pronounced “TEE-my”) and
Mark Moore are the co-founders of The Selie Foundation. The two met in
Petion-ville, Haiti, a suburb of Port-au-Prince, in 2001 and were married in
North Topsail Beach, North Carolina in 2004. They have a son John, daughter
Christina, and lost another daughter Sara on the day she was born in 2009. Mark
also has two daughters from his previous marriage and Ti Maille loves them like
they were her own. Theresa and Jessica are a big part of Moore family life and
are their little siblings' heroes. The Moore’s live in Jacksonville, North
Carolina, but miss their family and friends in Haiti terribly.
Ti Maille was born in Gros Morne, Haiti outside of Gonaives. Her mother,
L’umenne, died when she was very young and Ti Maille hates that she has no
memory of her. Ti Maille says that, “One of my deepest regrets is that I have no
photographs of my mother.” Her father, Luke, still lives in Gros Morne. Ti Maille was raised primarily by her maternal
Grandmother Selie. She has family in the Haitian cities
and towns of Port-au-Prince, Petion-ville, La Plaine, Carrefour, Gonaives,
L’Akil, and Gros Morne.
Mark says of Ti Maille, “It is incredible that she has endured all of the
hardships she has been through and still has the kind, gentle, loving heart she
does. Many people facing far fewer and less challenging obstacles become
hardened, bitter, and cynical. Thank God she has not.”
Mark was born in Evanston, Illinois. His mother, Sue, lives in Gainesville,
Georgia and is a tireless supporter of the family. His father, Malcolm, died in
1989 and Mark says he still misses him every day. He has family all over the
country, but primarily in the Southeastern US.
Mark first went to Haiti in 2000 and always wanted to find a positive way to help
the Haitian people. He has traveled to more than fifty countries and has often
described Haitians as, “the most hopeful people in the most hopeless situation”
he’s ever seen. He was extremely motivated to learn Kreyol after meeting Ti
Maille and they still speak her native language at home. There are, however,
times when he gets tongue-tied and his Kreyol is so bad that Ti Maille laughs
and asks, “All this time with me and you STILL can’t speak good Kreyol?”
The Moore’s volunteer their time, effort, and
energies to The Selie Foundation.