In Fiscal Year 2023 Quixote Center’s agro-forestry work in Haiti directly impacted over 800 families, over 1000 elementary school children, and hundreds more small-scale farmers and cooperative members. Indirectly our reforestation work impacts all 11,000 members of the population of Gros Morne and surrounding areas.
Quixote Center partners with organizations In Haiti to address the root causes of Haiti’s three interrelated crises: extreme violence, migration, and hunger. We dream of the day when every Haitian family and community is thriving, in dignity and security.
Our primary partner in the Gros Morne area is the Jean Marie Vincent agriculture and formation center, located in Grepen. This year the JMV Center nurtured and distributed a variety of tree seedlings, including avocado, coffee, citrus, key lime, and coconut. Local families planted more than 16,000 trees in their yards. They expanded to create new tree nurseries and implemented a new project to increase plantain production, which will improve food security as well as increase income. They maintain a model garden plot which serves as a training ground for local farmers and also provides produce to local needy families. They teach local schoolchildren about the importance of maintaining their tree cover, and provide training on how to do it. They provide organizing assistance for smallholder farmer cooperatives. They provide financial and organizing training for MUSO’s, small savings and lending groups which provide a means for the very poor to save money and take out small loans.
And they sustain the Tet Mon Forest. The forest is the only one of its kind in the region. It offers an illustration and model of successful reforestation and provides training and an example to local leaders as well as agronomy students. The forest diminishes soil runoff during storms, protecting peoples’ houses. The JMV Center team has also established experimental gardens within the forest to produce a variety of food crops among the trees. They either sell the produce to sustain the work of the center, or give it away to needy families.
Our full Fiscal Year report for the JMV Center is Here.
Most of the news coming out of Haiti is distressing, and it would be easy to throw up our hands. But we know that our work is part of the solution and that together with our partners and with all of you, we are helping to make possible a peaceful and secure future in Haiti.
Across the globe, people are likely to join armed groups for economic reasons, for religious reasons, or as a result of poor governance. In Haiti’s case, extreme poverty, poor governance, and a weak national police force have led to today’s gang takeover of large parts of the country. Illegal arms transfers, much of it from the United States, have made the gangs more lethal.
The same issues are also causing Haitians to migrate in unprecedented numbers; in the first nine months of 2023 US Border patrol encountered 163,781 Haitians at our borders, up from 57,000 in all of 2022. This does not include Haitians interdicted at sea (4600 this year through June), or the legal arrivals through humanitarian parole (about 50,000 through June). There were nearly 600,000 Haitian cases pending processing for the parole program as of May. People will do what they have to do to survive and take care of their families.
Haiti will exist in a perpetual state of crisis until people can earn enough money to meet their needs and to create thriving communities. This is our work in Haiti. This is what you are supporting. Thank you.