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.
Nov 6, 2014

STRIVING FORWARD IN FEEDING HAITI

An initial infection of Sigatoka
An initial infection of Sigatoka

If I were to note major changes as I walked through Haiti and met with rural farmers, it would have been the number of topping bags of rice in the market place with a foreign language written on them and the local rice of L'estere the heart of the rice production  in Haiti, where the open bins of rice are laid in the sun and the farmers complain of how it is difficult to move their products. Yet, the discussion rages on about the insecurity of the food production. We are doing our utmost in our capacity to keep the local food production going strong.  Sustainable projects like the Center for Plaintain Propagation (CPP) have nearly eliminated Sigatoka, a chronic disease destroying a major staple in the Haitian diet mainly grown in the Artibonite Region.

The Center for Plantain Propagation (CPP) was created by the Lambi Fund of Haiti in 2008 as a direct response to the spread of sigatoka in the Gwomon region of Latibonit Department in northern Haiti. A leaf spot disease of bananas, sigatoka interferes with plant photosynthesis, reducing yields by 50% or more. Because plantains are a staple product for many Haitians, sigatoka represents a very real threat to food security for a population whose median income is less than $2 per day. With the recognition that solutions to the challenges of food security and basic human development must arise from within, and be owned by, local populations, the Lambi Fund of Haiti has always pursued a strategy of local control wherein grassroots organizations approach Lambi with their projects to which the Lambi Fund brings the necessary resources including financing and training. Because the spread of Black Sigatoka represents a threat to food security for all Haitians, the Lambi Fund of Haiti was forced to adopt a very different approach.

. The goals were as follows:

1: Propagate dissemination of sigatoka-resistant plantains throughout the Gwomon region of Haiti by growing and selling FHIA 21 plantain seedlings and through training of area farmers in the plantain decortication process.

At the end of 2013, the Lambi Fund of Haiti hired InfoDev, a well-established evaluation firm located in Port au Prince, to conduct a comprehensive review of the impact of the first five years of the CPP, and to make recommendations regarding its future direction. In the areas directly impacted by the CPP, the study determined that the land under cultivation with FHIA 21, sigatoka resistant strains of plantains, had increased from 200 hectares to more than 900 hectares. Furthermore, whereas only 25% of the plantains grown in the Gwomon region in 2007, when the CPP was first being considered, were sigatoka-resistant, by 2013, the percentage of FHIA-21 variety plantains had grown to more than 60%.

In addition to the conferred advantage of being sigatoka resistant, the FHIA-21 variety of plantain typically produces up to two additional clusters per plant, significantly increasing the productivity of the average plantain “tree.” A side benefit, then, of the introduce of the FHIA-21 variety of plantain has been to increase overall plantain production and profits to area farmers, while creating new commercial opportunities for area farmers.

With training and technical assistance from the CPP, area farmers have established a facility to produce plantain chips for sale to area orphanages and schools. This has not only provided additional revenue to area farmers, but has improved the diet of area school children who had, heretofore, relied on simple, sugar-based snacks/candies to sustain them during the long school day.

2: Provide training to area farmers on the use of natural, organic pesticides to control pests and plant disease.

While sigatoka represents a more prominent threat to the food security of Haitians, ordinary pests can significantly reduce yields of not only plantains but other crops as well. The CPP has trained area farmers in the use of local products, including hot peppers and sour orange, as well as other local products that may serve as natural pesticides and to help to eliminate other vermin. In 2013, the CPP provided six different types of trainings to some 543 individuals on both decortication as well as organic pesticide treatment. They were also taught how to reduce transmission of plant diseases and pests by, for example, cleaning shoes before entering into their fields. Trainings were also offered in the areas of forestry, nursery prep and management, and the preparation and formation of cooperatives for development. 

The following organizations and their membership received training in 2013.

Organization                                                                                 Membership           Women            Men           

AGPGM: Asosyasyon Gwoupman Plantè Gwomon                                 200                        60                 140

APS: Asosyasyon Peyizan Sel                                                             180                         69                111    

APMA: Asosyasyon Plantè Mannyok Akil                                              163                         77                 56     

Total                                                                                                   543                        217               296

 CPP undergirds local food production and continues to support the food production making available 6000 new plantain trees thus far in 2014, with a potential of doubling this production by end of December. 

Our donors have together supported this effort and we are forever grateful!

Developing healthy resistant strain plantain trees
Developing healthy resistant strain plantain trees
Healthy and robust plantains
Healthy and robust plantains
Transferring the new shoots to grow in the field
Transferring the new shoots to grow in the field
Sep 25, 2014

An Encouraging Response For a New Beginning

Easy access to water frees up time to go to school
Easy access to water frees up time to go to school

In July, Global Giving gave the Lambi Fund and its partners a unique opportunity to launch a campaign to "Give water, Give life" to a drought ridden area of northwest Haiti.  We worked in earnest to share the challenge with you and our network of support.  You responded and today we are on our way to build the cisterns in Dityet, Lakoma and Mawotye.  I am going to keep you abreast every step of the way.

The excitement in Didyet is overwhelming such that the women have met twice and have begun to define their roles and contribution in the construction of the cisterns. They have set the criteria for identification of the site with careful consultation with the engineers.   Volunteers are gathering to collect all the rocks needed for the foundation and volunteers are on standby to begin working with the engineers.  The Lambi Fund has retained ProConsult for the development of the cisterns.  

The collective response to partake in this campaign is our impetus to meet the challenge ahead.  4 foundations added $10,000.00 each to our one-day funding and individual gifts have helped us reach over 60%  of our current goal of $88,060.00.

The contribution from the localities are volunteers in time, talents, rocks and sand, transportation of materials, wood, cement and water.  The transportation of materials is important  since the localities are difficult to reach.  They are not at proximity to main roads and are often destroyed during the torrential rainfall during hurricane season.

The participation is led by initial training that will preceed the actual construction.  Training in cleaning and maintaining the water is a critical element and there is a broad selection of organizational members who will be trained to maintain the cisterns.  

Ground breaking is expected to be set for October 2014!

Because you have responded and shared with us in a special gift, we are on the way to giving water and life to our partners and their families.  We are ever so grateful.

Clean water equals peace of mind
Clean water equals peace of mind
Model of cistern to be built
Model of cistern to be built
Clean water equals healthier living!
Clean water equals healthier living!

Links:

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:

donate now:

Make a monthly recurring donation on your credit card. You can cancel at any time.
Make a donation in honor or memory of:
What kind of card would you like to send?
How much would you like to donate?
  • $10
    give
  • $15
    give
  • $20
    give
  • $40
    give
  • $100
    give
  • $10
    each month
    give
  • $15
    each month
    give
  • $20
    each month
    give
  • $40
    each month
    give
  • $100
    each month
    give
  • $
    give
gift Make this donation a gift, in honor of, or in memory of someone?

Reviews of Lambi Fund of Haiti

Great Nonprofits
Read and write reviews about Lambi Fund of Haiti on GreatNonProfits.org.