Haiti is currently 98% deforested, robbed of its once rich rainforest to supply Europe with fine furniture. The trees which remain are under constant threat from locals who need wood to make charcoal, the predominant cooking fuel in the country. Without trees to hold the soil in place, seasonal rains cause a cascading crisis by pushing fertile top soil into the ocean. What remains is soil unable to support traditional agriculture, the backbone of Haiti’s survival.
In 1994 the Quixote Center teamed up with local activists and farmers to begin the work of reforestation. Along the way the Haiti Reborn program has grown to include a comprehensive program of small farmer training and education, research into effective methods of land management, and empowerment of rural people to become food sovereign by producing what they need.
The Game Changer
We are looking ahead with our partners in Haiti to the coming age of climate change, where weather patterns are expected to shift dramatically. In this new era of uncertainty, we are developing local resources for farmers struggling to adapt, in the form of training facilities, a library of information for local people, and regular access to our now-massive supply of young trees. Taken together this plan will create an oasis of possibilities for the people of Gros-Morne and, in the future, the people of Haiti.
This program is about more than technical assistance. We are building a movement of people who want to see policies and practices change here in the United States as well. Sign up to receive our e-mails and stay up to date on our progress in Haiti.