livelihoods

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Recreating the Haitian Army: Here We Go Again

  • Posted on: 15 July 2017
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Linked and copied below is a BBC article about yet another effort by the Haitian government to re-create a military force. The reasons given are job creation, disaster response, and border patrol.  Costa Rica also does not have a military and is able to patrol its borders and respond to disasters through civilian institutions.  In addition, Costa Rica creates jobs by encouraging investment.  Given the sordid history of the Haitian military, donors would much prefer that Haiti continues to focus on strengthening the national police force.  Recreating the military could very well result in more instability and uncertainty - as was the case in the past. 

Nearly Seven Years After Quake, 50,000 Remain in Camps

  • Posted on: 13 December 2016
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Below is an article by David McFadden (AP) concerning the 50,000 people who remain in camps seven years after the earthquake. Not everyone in the camps was/is is a victim of the earthquake.  Some were victims of abject poverty and the camps were better places to be than the slums where they were living.  Ninety six percent of those living in the camps left - either on their own or with assistance from a range of organizations.  Solutions remain elusive for those who remain. 

This American Entrepreneur is Changing Haitian Women's Lives One Ice-cream At A Time

  • Posted on: 29 September 2016
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Below is a an article by Forbes writer Jo Piazza about Haitian-American entrepeneur Alexis Gallivan. With the management skills she acquired selling ice cream in Brooklyn, Gallivan decided to replicate her business in Haiti.  Being an entrepeneur in Haiti is tough - it ranks 182nd out of 189 countries in the latest Worrd Bank "Ease of Doing Business" Report. To put that into perspective, Afghanistan is 177th. However, the Haitian diaspora is full of individuals with skills, resources, and the potential to create small businesses that provide training and livelihoods.  Learn more at the Bel Rev website. 

New Initiative to Support Plastic Collectors in Haiti

  • Posted on: 23 September 2016
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

In conjunction with Timberland, HP Inc, and the Clinton Global Initiative, Pittsburgh-based company Thread International PBC LTD has launched a three year pilot project in Haiti to street-level plastic bottle collectors by providing education, health care, and job training. The collectors perform a valuable service as plastic,  n addition to being an eyesore, can leech into the soil and clogs drainage canals that are meant to divert water during major storms. More information from Plastics News follows:

Carnival Cruise Lines Plans to Build Cruise Port at Ile de la Tortue

  • Posted on: 6 August 2014
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Below is an article by David McFadden (Associated Press) concerning the planned development of a port on the Ile de la Tortue north of Port de Paix.  The island, poorer than most other parts of Haiti, would certainly benefit from the jobs that could potentially come with the port.  The main livelihood opportunities at present involve drug smuggling and construction of boats for fishing and/or smuggling.  This, along with international flights, opens up new possibilities for tourism in northern Haiti.

Supporting Solutions to Urban Displacement in Haiti

  • Posted on: 7 February 2014
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

The Brookings Institution and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) recently released a report analyzing solutions for those who remain displaced in Port-au-Prince.  A key message is that solutions involve more than just closing camps.  Solutions happen over the long-term and require the participation of governments, humanitarians,  development agencies and the displaced.  The executive summary is below and you can read the full report here.  

Give Haitian Coffee (and Farmers) a Chance

  • Posted on: 6 October 2011
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Like Haitians themselves, coffee has African roots.  Throughout much of its colonial and post-colonial history, coffee was a major export and source of livelihoods.  However, mismanagement, deforestation, natural disasters, political instability, and embargos have resulted in a dramatic decrease Haitian coffee exports. Yet, Haitian coffee is good - unusually good.  Can Haiti revive and expand its coffee industry?  Just Haiti and Singing Rooster are two organizations that believe it can.  Buying from either of these organizations is a great way to support both your coffee habit and Haitian farmers.

Haiti Education and Leadership Program (HELP) Update

  • Posted on: 29 January 2011
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Since 1988, the Haitian Education and Leadership Program (HELP) has provided scholarships to high performing students throughout Haiti based solely on merit.  HELP is still going strong and recently upgraded its website with support from the Mastercard Foundation.  It may well be that the only activity that counts as "sustainable development" is education.  Knowledge and skills can’t be taken away.  In a country where over 40% of the population is under the age of fourteen, education empowers individuals to improve themselves, their communities, and their country.  More information about HELP follows.  

Beyond Emergency Relief in Haiti (Groupe URD)

  • Posted on: 28 January 2011
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Below is a stock-taking document by Groupe URD which highlights common themes from the many evaluations that have been carried out concerning the humanitarian response to the earthquake.  Chief among them are the importance of urban planning in cities, agricultural revitalization in the countryside, disaster preparedness throughout the country, and the need to focus on communities and institutions rather than individuals.  You can also learn more about URD's activities in Haiti here

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