Heifer's Work in Haiti
In the early 17th century, the French established a presence on Hispaniola, and in 1697, Spain ceded the western third of the island to the French, which later became Haiti. The French colony, based on forestry and sugar-related industries, became one of the wealthiest in the Caribbean, but only through the heavy importation of African slaves and considerable environmental degradation. In the late 18th century, Haiti’s nearly half million slaves revolted under Toussaint Louverture. After a prolonged struggle, Haiti became the first black republic to declare its independence in 1804.
Haiti is now the least-developed country in the Western Hemisphere and one of the poorest in the world ranking 146th of 177 countries in the UN’s Human Development Index.
Inappropriate economic policies, political instability, a shortage of good arable land and environmental deterioration are factors attributed to the economic stagnation of the country. Severe deforestation makes the country extremely vulnerable to hurricanes, droughts, floods and other disasters that often times paralyze the entire population.
Haiti is now the least-developed country in the Western Hemisphere and one of the poorest in the world.
Established in 1999, Heifer International Haiti partners with communities by providing livestock, seeds and training to improve living conditions to break the never-ending cycle of poverty and despair.
The program’s approach is characterized by strengthening small farmer organizations through agroecology and literacy training. Livestock, seeds and training are the main resources present in all of Heifer Haiti’s projects.
Current project work takes place in six departments in the country located in the following regions: north/northeast, Artibonite, west and south/southeast.