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Staff Spotlight: Dafney Lavache

We are delighted to introduce our new Director of Community Engagement, Dafney Lavache. Dafney is originally from Haiti and has worked among resettled Indianapolis communities for over a decade. Her reputation is even bigger than her smile. We are excited about her work and all she will be bringing to the many different communities that now call Indianapolis home. 

In addition to her duties as Director of Community Engagement at Patchwork, Dafney serves on two school boards and assists immigrants and refugees as an Immigrant Welcome Center Natural Helper.  

Her dedication to community service began in 2013 when she worked as a Haitian cultural dance instructor at the Haitian-American Institute. She has become a primary voice and community worker within the Haitian community. 


Dafney has been involved in community service with the Haitian-American Institute for over ten years. While working full-time in childcare, Dafney completed her Early Childhood Associate's degree from Ivy Tech. As an Immigrant Welcome Center Natural Helper, she also spread vaccination awareness among the Haitian community during the COVID-19 pandemic. 


Dafney's unwavering commitment to service, her advocacy for women's empowerment, her expertise in promoting neurodiversity, and her efforts in bridging gaps in medical interpretation have not gone unnoticed. Her outstanding contributions have earned her the prestigious 2022 Mayor's Community Service Award from the city of Indianapolis and the Certificate of Community Service of Haitians in Indiana from the Consulate General of Haiti in Chicago


At the core of Dafney's values and virtues is her unwavering belief in community service. To her, community service is her way of "paying rent for living on the earth."

Dafney's favorite quote reflects her deep commitment to serving others and positively impacting her community:


"It is our duty to fight for our freedom. It is our duty to win. We must love each other and support each other. We have nothing to lose but our chains." - Assata Shakur


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