Loune Viaud

Activist Type
Human Rights

Loune Viaud is a Haitian human rights advocate who has significantly contributed to public health and children’s welfare in Haiti. In 2010, during a meeting to discuss the country’s recovery from devastating hurricanes, a powerful earthquake struck, and Loune rushed to Haiti’s General Hospital to find 38 orphaned children among the rubble. She immediately took them in and founded Zanmi Beni, a home for disadvantaged children just outside of Port-au-Prince. Loune’s dedication to helping Haiti has earned her the 2002 Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award.

Despite the ongoing challenges faced by Haiti, Loune’s advocacy and determination provide hope for the country’s future. In addition to her work at Zanmi Beni, Loune continues to work with Zanmi Lasante and Partners in Health, where she helped launch one of the world’s most effective AIDS treatment programs. Loune’s story highlights the resilience of the human spirit, showing that in times of crisis, there are always individuals willing to step up and make a difference, even when the odds are against them. 

Artwork by
Fran Matos

This portrait is inspired by the colorful vibrancy often seen in Haitian art. I’ve used the tropical Haitian landscape as the backdrop to my illustration of Loune Viaud since she was crucial to natural disaster recovery efforts in Haiti. As she is someone who has selflessly taken in countless children in the aftermath of a devastating earthquake, I’ve chosen to illustrate her holding a child as a representation of how she continues to guide, protect and nurture the future of Haiti.


Haiti Flag
January 1, 1804
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