Rome Foundation is a Tampa based non profit organization that is involved in building health care infrastructure and in promoting livelihoods in Haiti. Its staff are active in the southern portion of the country and recently secured thirty acress of land in the Petit Goave Area. They are currently raising funds for the establishment of a Jatropha nursery - an innovative way to both fight erosion and create jobs at the same time.
Haitian leaders tend to get bogged down in ever-unstable Port au Prince. It is a matter of political survival. However, most of Haiti is rural and certainly most of what is good about Haiti is to be found outside of its largest city. Recently President Preval made a public tour of the Central Plateau. We were happy to see that public health was a recurring theme of his trip. Regardless of one's political beliefs, we can all agree increased attention to public health is essential. When a person has health, a person has hope. Where there is hope, there is also the possibility of development and a better future.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged the world on Thursday to take action against water shortages. Whether we are talking about global health, economic growth, or global peace, how water is managed, used, and shared must be taken into account. As a developmental and humanitarian issue alike, water shortages will need to be addressed nationally, regionally, and globally.
Student activism. During my years at the University of Miami, I became a part of the large community of students who were frustrated that we lived our daily lives through textbooks as our global community continued to struggle. As students we used this frustration, coupled with our idealistic visions, to give us a passionate drive to "make a difference". But how long will this spark last and why should we invest in these young leaders?
It's been said that a person's first language is the language of the heart and the second is the language only of the head. Is it possible to really understand a country without knowing the predominate language? I don't think it is. Haiti is often called a Francophone country, and while the politicians and wealthy speak it, they are a minority. The country is Kreyolphone! Below is some information on Haiti's only widely spoken language and some resources for learning it.
According to the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), Climate change is making it harder for many people to access clean water and food, and widening the spread of infectious diseases, which include malaria and its dangerous cousin dengue fever. If the past few years have become the new normal, we need to do a better job of adapting. This means preventing, rather than just responding to disasters.
Tequila Minsky is one of the newest members of the Haiti Innovation community. She is a long time Haiti hand who is both a photographer and a frequent commentator on Haitian issues. You can view her photographs by clicking here. Below are some blogs that she has written lately. Enjoy!
Haiti's roads are awful. When I was a volunteer, a peacekeeper told me that the only worse roads he had ever seen were in Nepal. The lack of infrastucture has affected people's ability to do business, seek health care, visit relatives, and to travel in general. But there is good news - For the first time in a long while progress is being made on Haiti's road system.
So I've been thinking about joining Rotary Club. Rotary is a worldwide organization of business and professional leaders interested in humanitarian service, encouraging high ethical standards, and promoting peace and goodwill around the world. There are about 1.2 million Rotarians belonging to more than 31,000 Rotary clubs in 166 countries. There are plenty of programs financed by Rotary International, but are there Haitian Rotary Clubs? Turns out that there are.