The Quixote Center has been working in solidarity with the people of Haiti since 1991, building grassroots activism in support of more just policies. We also provide support for organizations in Haiti, with an emphasis on local, democratic control.
Since 1998 our primary partnership has been with the Jean Marie Vincent Formation Center in Gros Morne, Haiti, developing reforestation and sustainable agricultural programs. Three core facets of the program are:
Model forest on Tet Mon – this was the original phase of the project. In 1998 a community association was formed to address land erosion along the highway that passes through Gros Morne. The solution was to begin a reforestation effort on Tet Mon, a mountain near the highway, runoff from the mountain was a major source of erosion on the highway. The program in Tet Mon took off and now it is home to a forest of 200,000+ trees. The forest is a space for community meetings, trainings, and is itself a space for exploring different planting techniques, including drip irrigation, a vital technology for agriculture in Haiti.
Tree Nursery and Outreach Project – At the nearby Jean Marie Vincent Formation Center, a tree nursery was established to nurture saplings for planting on Tet Mon. The nursery now produces anywhere from 50-100,000 trees depending on the weather. The saplings make their way throughout the parish of Gros Morne thanks to the work of community organizers who travel through a network of 30 churches in the parish to do trainings with community groups. As part of the outreach and training is the securing of water sources with protective planting of specialized grasses and small trees.
The Garden and Training Project – Also located at the Jean Marie Vincent Formation Center is a garden in which agricultural technicians explore different varieties of fruit and vegetables, and techniques to protect the produce from pests. The garden is also the focal point for a training program with local farmers who attend trainings at the Center and learn about integration of plant types to facilitate cross fertilization, protect against insects, and irrigation systems that make the most of the limited access to water that is the reality for many farmers.
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