Caribbean

FRB's Haiti-Northwest program faces many local challenges

Please pray for the people of Haiti as they struggle with the effects of multiple droughts and resultant severe food shortages.  This article from the BBC covers another aspect of desperation from lack of prospects: risking their lives on crowded boats as they seek work elsewhere. It mentions the area of Haiti where FRB's Haiti-Northwest program is working to help farmer cooperatives achieve food security in the face of natural disaster.

Every year thousands of Haitians risk their lives trying to make the perilous sea voyage from their country to one of its wealthier Caribbean neighbours in a bid for a better life.

They cram themselves into small boats which are often far from seaworthy. They run the risk of capsizing or being picked up by coastguard patrols.

Many feel this is their only option in a country which is not only the poorest in the western hemisphere but which was further destroyed by a devastating earthquake in 2010.

People from all over Haiti head to the north-west of the island to get onto these boats to leave their homeland, but most are from this impoverished region itself.

06/03/2014 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Local cooperatives fill many important roles in Haitian Communities

Because there is little government presence where FRB’s Haiti-Northwest program is working, local people understand the need to organize for the protection, development and growth of their communities. The twelve program communities have created cooperatives which address the varied needs and concerns of its members.

Training Co-ops provide training on many topics, among them appropriate agricultural techniques like intercropping as a way to take the best advantage of available land and ensure that, if one crop fails, the others might survive. More farmers are planting peanuts, congo beans (pigeon peas), and root crops like manioc (cassava) and sweet potato because of their excellent survival rates.

04/16/2014 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

In the Dominican Republic, greater food security for marginalized poor

The goal of FRB’s Dominican Republic-Bateyes program is to reduce malnutrition and increase family incomes and the overall quality of life of Haitian immigrants and Dominicans of Haitian descent. These marginalized communities live in bateyes [ba TAY yace] — former sugar plantation work camps — and, recently ruled as “in transit” (though families may have lived in the country for four generations), are not generally eligible for government services.

Their situation is improving through the program: participants are learning new skills in crop management, soil preparation, community seed banks, nutrition, vegetable and small animal production, and efficient marketing of excess produce. Pass-on-the-gift projects with small animals afford participants a source of protein and income. Organizing committees help communities access basics such as water and education for their children.

03/24/2014 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More

Grossnickle Church of the Brethren to bless seeds, raise funds for food program

Members of Myersville's Grossnickle Church of the Brethren is undertaken its Growing Project to raise funds for the Christian organization Foods Resource Bank. On May 19 Grossnickle will partner with eight other churches to hold it's Blessing of the Seeds event at the farm of Grossnickle members Jeff and Patty Hurwitz.

05/13/2013 | Comments: 0 | Add Comment | Read More
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