January – June 2017 Base Update
2017 has proved to be one of the busiest years yet at Haiti Communitere. As the team here worked to get the base cleaned up and increased capacity through new, upgraded systems and procedures, the community projects and programs continued to grow and expand. Here’s a round-up of all the great things that have been happening on base so far this year!
Anacaona-Surge-Rajepre-Ravagep WASH Program in Cite Soleil
In December 2016, HC was approached by community organization Rajepre about a WASH program and STD education and prevention training they wanted to start in Cite Soleil. This scale of project was out of scope for HC to implement, so we waited until February when Surge for Water came to HC and introduced the two to discuss a possible partnership. Surge provides financial support and because they are not based in country, they reached out to the new locally based soap recycling social enterprise Anacaona to handle hygiene programming. For better insight to the community, local organization RAVAGEP has been brought on board as well. The project has created jobs and now employs three trained Hygiene Ambassadors and is in the early phase of implementation; doing door-to-door home visits throughout Cite Soleil, collecting base data and educating on proper hygiene. The next phase is slated to target school education, and another round of home visits to measure retention and impact of the program.
HC Intern Program
Thanks to recent Agronomy graduates Aniel & Jean Roudly, our base received the benefits of their practical Agronomic Internship at Haiti Communitere. After meetings with our Agriculture and Sustainability Director, Ruth Portnoff, the interns crafted a vision to employ agronomic techniques at the HC base. Our base now showcases a medicinal herb and tea garden, composting keyhole gardens, raised beds, and other methods meant to educate and inspire base visitors.
New Accommodations Booking System
Welcome to Our New Tenants
Long time HC friend Kids Connection Haiti have just established their new in-country offices with recently renovated shipping containers at the HC base. Kids Connection Haiti is non-profit organization providing integrated services to orphans in Haiti who seek support for their transition from orphanages to independent lives. KCH provides these young men and women with training, education and mentoring to attain self-sufficiency. They offer a unique, innovative program that helps young Haitians close the gap between childhood and independent, adult life.
Haiti Deaf Academy moved into two shipping container spaces in April. One space will act as the HDA home office, and the other as a conference space as this organization aids in the mission of developing Haitian sign language.
Computer Lab Improvements
HC’s computer lab was bolstered in January when we purchased four new desktop computers from World Computer Exchange. The HC computer lab is open to guests and community members and hosts several community led projects and workshops every year. E-mail [email protected] if you are interested in organizing or leading a computer skills training class.
Our Community Roundtable is a collection of local community and organization leaders that meets once a month to discuss community projects and events, share ideas, and exchange best practices. Each month HC makes $100 available for the Roundtable to award to a community initiative to help them take their project over the finish line. Since the beginning of the year, three initiatives have received funds. They include:
• SAKALA received $150 for a tree planting initiative throughout Cite Soleil.
• iLab received $60 to start a weekend club, “English for Everyone,” designed for people looking to learn English in a relaxed environment.
• RAVAGEP received $150 for the purchase of soil to start a tree nursery in the neighborhood of Bwa 9, Cite Soleil.
Furcy Tree Planting
HC facilitated a day of tree planting in the mountains near Furcy for a group of young people from Cite Soleil. Watch this short video to learn more!
Visits By Former HC Volunteers Steve, Jeannie and Aaron, Lindsay, Delphine and Ton
HC is a family – and if you’re reading this right now, you already know that. A number of old HC crew came to visit early this year and spent time helping out both on base and in the community. A hearty “thank you” for the blood, sweat, tears, and laughter goes out to Steve Marsh, Jeanne and Aaron Sangster, Lindsay Leigh, Delphine Bedu and Ton Rutten. And check out this fun birthday video the HC crew made for former Ops Director Laura Puts!
Post-Hurricane Matthew Efforts
Map of Partners’ Work That Was Facilitated in Response to Hurricane Matthew
Check out this nifty map that shows the type of work and impacts HC facilitated in the aftermath of Matthew.
Trees That Feed Foundation’s “Tree Drops”
HC collaborated with Trees That Feed Foundation to transport over 1,400 trees to Jeremie after Hurricane Matthew. In this effort to reforest one of the hardest hit regions of Haiti, HC outfitted the Konbit Bus with a shelving system and TTFF provided the trees and identified recipients. Enjoy this pic of Creighton, hanging out with a jungle of trees on the bus !
Konbit Soley Leve, Rajepre, Ravagep, Sakala, Haiti Communitere and other local organizations came together to improve irrigation systems destroyed by Hurricane Matthew. The Konbit cleaned up banana farms and lifted community spirits as a result. Haiti Communitere provided a solar charging station, food, water, tools, Barbancourt and transport.