Lambi Fund of Haiti

The Lambi Fund's mission is to assist the popular democratic movement in Haiti. The Lambi Fund provides financial resources, training and technical assistance to peasant-led community organizations that promote the social and economic empowerment of the Haitian people.
Sep 16, 2014

Hope for Food Security and Food Sovereignty

Today's cry is for food security and sovereignty in Haiti. With the level of poverty and the climactic events that engender greater risk to the resilience of the population, it is a critical element in the growth of the population yet often spoken about studied yet not a high priority for the administrations.  They do little to address the urgency and speak of development as an isolated series of numbers in indices and scales.  Although we understand the systemic approach necessary to address Haiti’s "essentially agriculture based economy", we have yet to realize as a people a partnership to structure change among the sectors controlling the economy including the international community whose role over the years has magnified with the installation of the MINUSTAH, the United Nations Forces of Peace, in a country without war.

It is essential that with 80% of the labor force unemployed, maintaining rural farmers in productive work to grow food and expand their production remains a priority.  The Lambi Fund has partnered with MOPDAD, the Peasant Movement for the Development of Delann, whose new integrated project has three components to enhance food production:

  1. The irrigation component uses pumps to alternate watering 30 acres of land belonging to local farmers using the riverbed to pump uphill to maintain the productivity of the soil until the harvest.  
  2. Second, there is availability for small loans to expand the acreage for the planters ($920,000.00 HTG) and a separate small loan fund for women members ($700,000.00 Haitian gourdes-HTG) who have established their small enterprises selling basic necessity items based on the season.
  3. A mill was built to avail transformation of corn and millet and is available to members and non- members.

The food production of MOPDAD has supported 350 rural farmers in the Delann area. There were 175 loans for men and 175 loans for women enterprises approved by the organization’s management team ranging from $5,000 to $15,000 (HTG) and thus far reimbursed at 80%.  The 2% interest grows the fund and supports the organization in its expenses.  During the last month the mill generated the transformation of 36,696 pounds of cornmeal and 10,332 pounds of millet for cereal and local consumption. 

The increase in acreage, the relative income and revenue for individual farmers and enterprise builders are great motivators keeping farmers from migrating to cities where life is even tougher with high unemployment and an increasing cost of living.

These projects supported initially through the generosity of many donors, like yourself, are sustainable and within the coming year will be developing greater numbers of small enterprises and increase acreage of local production in spite of a long term national plan touching every farmer in Haiti.

Thanks for your support and keeping abreast of the progress rural peasants in Haiti are making in the face of grave challenges.

Waiting to have their grains milled
Waiting to have their grains milled
MOPDAD
MOPDAD's irrigation pump

Links:

Sep 15, 2014

Community Credit Fund Makes a Difference in Rural Haiti

Mirlande is a young woman in her early thirties living in the Gonaives area. When I visited AFAGM, she was one of the members who received training on running a small business and she is a beneficiary of the credit project of AFAGM.  Mirlande said she would not miss any of her meetings because it is a life source where her hopes are being realized, one step at the time. She had a small revenue producing activity selling used clothing, but she could not invest in a bale of clothing.  She only had a few pieces at the time.  With her new loan, she has purchased a bale of clothing that has her business advance multifold.

Mirlande is only one of 301 women who are now growing their businesses.  AFAGM is in its sixth lending cycle with 92% on-time reimbursement from the first cycle that benefited from a $5,000.00 Gourdes (HTG) loan repaid at a 2% interest.  The current cycle has 48 beneficiaries.  Their small enterprises are broad and diversified in portfolio.  The small businesses range from agricultural products or cooked food to cosmetic and energy products - like gas for cooking or oil for engines. The 48 beneficiaries of this cycle have reported the following types of revenue producing activities:

Type of activity                     %

Food consumption                 62
Clothing                                  25
Beauty products                       8
Energy related                          4
Animal feed                               1

Lambi Fund has 10 partners in rural Haiti managing small loans to planters and rural women helpting to create revenue to sustain themselves while providing a needed service and other basic necessities through their small businesses.  These ten organizations are now managing $4,857,508.00 (HTG) and has assisted 1,538 small businesses in flourishing and enriching the families and communities where they are located.

AFAGM, Association of Women in Action of Gros Morne, is well deserving of its name for these women who are taking charge everyday and redefining their position in the community and in the scale of security and safety.  They are active participants in the economy and olay an immense role in reducing poverty among their communities.

Links:

Sep 15, 2014

Work and Income Producing Activities

September is a time of contemplation that starts with the last harvest.  For farmers in Haiti, their revenue comes with the harvest divided in parts:  One part is seed for the planting season coming; one part for the general functioning of the home; one part for the education and health; if anything yes saving may be buy a goat or a cow that is the banking for the future.  Any part of the goal for sustainable agriculture and alternative economies which are two of the priorities of the Lambi Fund in partnership with rural farmers, strategies to increase income or revenue, and create employment are critical to our long term sustainability goals.

The partnerships create income and revenue in two ways:  Microloans and employment generated through the organizations’ projects. 

Since January 2014,  5 new organizations  have provided loans ranging from HTG (gourdes) 5,000 to 15,000 to 564 members to reinforce their small enterprises.  They include a very diversified businesses:  small local restaurants, selling basic necessities like toothpaste, body and hair care, stocking beans for marketing as supply and demand fluctuate. Products sale fluctuate with the season for now, it is school supplies that fills the tables of the small merchant.  The loans are repaid at a 2% interest, re-invested in the organizations and maitaining the revolving aspect of the small credit.

The projects create opportunities for employment.  The 26 active projects hire 52 nursery hands who are trained to assist the organization in its goal to plant 20,000 trees.  As members of the organization, they will continue to plant and focus on the environment after the project.  MOPDAD in its project to irrigate 30 acres of land hires 4 pump operators to provide the service upon request.  The center for plantain propagation not only hire agronomist but also garden helpers to assure the well-being of over 6000 plantain trees harvested this year. In all  79 trained individuals and  professionals have secured work permanently due to the sustainability of the projects.

In all, the partnership of the Lambi Fund with peasant rural farmers have provided employment to 643 persons and provide long lasting training in the various field they represent.

For these families, September has been easier to bear in a nation where  the price of education has skyrocketed since the eathquake and the destruction of some many educational institutions and the lost of so many teachers.

The continued development of employment and alternative enterprises is supported by the donors who through their generosity has made the projects of the Lambi fund in partnership with rural peasants possible. 

Links:

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