I've just returned from Haiti and am excited to report that the Feeding Families Project is making progress! Partners and Makouti have used project funds collected to date and teamed up with Caritas and Friends of Haiti to provide chickens, goats, rabbits and seedlings to families throughout the project area (Grand Boulage). So far:
CHICKENS: 12 families have received 10 chickens each and are starting to raise them.
GOATS: 170 families have received a female goat (and 4 have received male breeding goats). Families have also received assistance in building goat pens and in providing forage/food. 10 families already have baby goats. When the goats breed, families give 1 female goat back to the program (so it can be given to another new family)
RABBITS: 258 families now have rabbits in family production units. Several gallons of mineral oil have also been provided to the community to help control mange in rabbits.
NURSERY: 70 families have been given 10 Benzolive tree seedlings each. Rabbits and goats eat these leaves, and they can be made into tea and eaten by people as well.
We are excited about the progress (and the assistance and collaboration of Caritas and FOH) but there is still much more to do. More families need assistance and families that received animals or trees need continued training. We hope we can count on your continued support!
With your generous giving, the Feeding Families project has passed the $1,000 mark in donations! Thank you to all of our supporters.
In June, we announced the trip of a volunteer specialist, funded by the Partners Farmer to Farmer Program, to train rabbit producers in some of the target communities of the Feeding Families Project, with focuses on small animals, vegetables plots and nurseries. In the following quote from her recent trip, veterinarian and small animal specialist Myriam Kaplan-Pasternak highlights the on-the-ground impacts of rising food costs in the rural communities:
“The increase in the cost of food has made is very difficult for everyone. Many areas are receiving food aid, but it is just a scratch on the surface. It is having an impact on our microcredit program, so we are also providing an alternative which is repayment [with] 6 female rabbits (offspring). This of course will take some time to give us a return, but will in the long run supply us with more breeding stock which we sorely need. Always a challenge. We are also looking at setting up meat processing facilities as we will need them soon enough in some areas.”
This statement points to the great need for a project like “Feeding Families”, which goes beyond food handouts to train promising community participants in food and animal production. Over the months our field staff and volunteers have been identifying the producers who have shown the most success in production and responsiveness to trainings. Your donations will provide the “breeding stock which we sorely need” in addition to other inputs such as seeds, trees, and further training. Stay tuned for future project updates!
Thanks to those who already donated. The Haiti Feeding Families project is underway! In collaboration with the Partners Farmer to Farmer Program, a rabbit specialist will be traveling to Haiti in July to train new and existing rabbit producers. More details soon!
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Director, Farmer to Farmer Program