Haiti's Lambi Fund Awarded Grant from Major Marketing Firm

  • Posted on: 2 August 2008
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Last week, there was an announcement on Corbett's List that Lambi Fund had been awarded a grant by the Blue Print Creative Group.  This grant will help them to cultivate brand awareness, increase volunteerism, and stimulate corporate and private donations.  Americans are a generous people who make possible the work of scores of local and international organizations in Haiti.  However, support is often more forthcoming for natural disasters than the heavy lifting (capacity building, civil society strengthening, livelihoods) that is needed to help people feed themselves, manage their own emergencies, and become active leaders, instead of just aid recipients, who can address social problems. We hope that this grant will help them get the word about what they do and why it is important.

XVII International AIDS Conference in Mexico City (August 3-8, 2008)

  • Posted on: 2 August 2008
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

The XVII International International AIDS Conference will take place in Mexico City from August 3-8.  This promises to be interesting given that the The President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), already the largest initiative ever devoted to a single disease, was reauthorized and expanded to $48 billion over the next five years. The Kaiser Family Foundation will be webcasting many portions of the conference. You will also be able to read summaries of each day's events here.

Thugs, Drugs, and Guns: Haitian Ex-Military Re-Emerge in the North

  • Posted on: 30 July 2008
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Like the United States, Haiti has a military tradition.  Both countries won freedom through warcraft.  Sadly, the Haitian military went on to kill far more Haitians than all attacking forces combined.  The Haitian military degraded into an engine for corruption, human rights abuses, and coup after coup. Jean Bertrand Aristide disbanded the military in 1995 but they remain a threat as Jonathan Katz reminds us in the Miami Herald.  

USAID Announces Three Year Effort to Promote Literacy and Fight HIV/AIDS

  • Posted on: 29 July 2008
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

USAID has just announced that literacy and fighting HIV/AIDS will be the focus of a new three year stabilization effort.  HIV/AIDS will be built into curricula and training will be provided for for teachers, school administrators, and inspectors.  If you've had any exposure to the Haitan education system(s), you know how important this is.  Food may be the key to the present, but education is the key to the future.  For more information, take a look at the main USAID website or the USAID/Haiti website.

Give a Hand to Haiti Through the American Express Top 25

  • Posted on: 29 July 2008
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

American Express is hosting a competition on its website where users (you don't have to be a member) submit ideas that could have a positive social impact if given a little bit of funding.  $2.5 million will be divided among the top 25 projects.  Let's face it - this is mostly advertising for American Express but a little seed money can go a long way.  There is one worthwhile Haitian project concerning reforestation in Les Cayes but you could always submit an idea of your own.  The deadline is August 18th.

S.O.D.A. Volunteers Making a Difference in Port au Prince

  • Posted on: 28 July 2008
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Though I haven't interacted directly with S.O.D.A (Sosyete Djòl Ansanm pou Demokrasi Patisipatif), I am intrigued.  SODA is a local organization, not an international NGO, that describes itself as "...a decentralized network of grassroots groups based in poor communities in that are dedicated to promoting voluntary and cooperative ways of organizing in the pursuit of social justice, economic self-sufficiency and universal education."  Their programs are ambitious and the website well done.  This organization is definitely worth a look.

Bourik in Sodo

  • Posted on: 20 July 2008
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Goats, chickens, cows, and bulls, are very much the sacrificial animals (not Bourik BOS) of Haiti and voodooists. Like turkeys in the United States near Thanksgiving these animals in Haiti get the shakes sometime near July 16th, when Festival Saut d’Eau takes place. Sodo, in Kreyòl, is the site of one of Haiti’s largest religious pilgrimages. Lore has it that the Virgin Mary appeared here long before the death of many the sacrificial fauna.

Haiti Food Security Update (7/19/2008)

  • Posted on: 19 July 2008
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

Is the third time the charm? Prime Ministerial Candidate number three Michèle Duvivier Pierre-Louis was approved in a 61-1 vote in Haiti’s lower legislative chamber.  Sexism, homophobia, and power politics could yet derail this nomination. Haiti needs a Prime Minister in order to have a functional government that can tackle developmental challenges, chief among them food insecurity.

USAID Programs and Priorities in Haiti

  • Posted on: 13 July 2008
  • By: Bryan Schaaf

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is the development agency of the American government and a major bilateral donor to Haiti.  USG support to Haiti is considerable - In Fiscal Year (FY) 2007, USAID provided 245 million dollars in foreign assistance to Haiti, 279 million in FY 2008 and is scheduled to provide 245 million in FY 2009.  The goal of this support can be summarized in one word - stability. The point of this blog is not to evaluate these programs but to point out what USAID is doing, where, and to highlight some useful resources on the USAID/Haiti website.

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