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Simon, 66, is one of Habitat for Humanity Haiti’s beneficiaries in Pestel, a community in the South of Haiti in the Grande Anse department. Simon tells us “I like that they didn’t just give us money or a house, we contributed to building our home, which made me feel proud. I was proud to be able to show my kids and grandkids the value of hard work and that I can contribute to my own well being. For that, I am grateful.” Simon’s house is one of the many that was greatly affected by Hurricane Matthew, and was part of our disaster relief efforts. Your donations help beneficiaries like Simon get back on their feet in a home that will now withstand future hurricanes and environmental catastrophes.

 

 

Habitat for Humanity Haiti has recently completed a successful training of a team of 19 people from the community of Canaan, located north of the capital of Port-au-Prince, in the repair and maintenance of solar powered streetlights. Studies have shown that the addition of streetlights can reduce crime by up to 36%. Prior to this initiative, the streetlamps that were installed by Habitat for Humanity and its partners would fall in disrepair due to a lack of qualified workers bale to service these areas. As such, the installed streetlamps, put in place to ensure that these streets did not remain in the dark after sunset were not properly maintained.

The training was done by Habitat for Humanity in conjunction with a local partner. After learning from similar projects in other areas of Haiti, Habitat for Humanity decided to empower a group of individuals by giving them the knowledge they would need in the maintenance of these solar powered streetlamps. The goal is to help create a pool of qualified workers in every community where solar streetlamps are installed.

At the end, each participant received a toolkit containing everything they would need to maintain and upkeep the solar powered streetlamps. Participants ranged in age from 20 years old, to more senior members of the community. One young woman from the community who took part in the program, Ruthiana, shared her thoughts with us. Ruthiana, who is studying to become a civil engineer said, “It’s important for me to understand how these solar streetlamps work because they help my entire neighborhood; now, if one of them breaks down, I will be able to help my community by fixing it.”

Through this solar streetlamp project, Habitat Haiti has partnered with the community to continue promoting a safe environment for the community of Canaan. We intend to continue with this model, training members of the community in the maintenance of solar powered streetlamps, in other areas throughout Haiti.

 

 

We have been hard at work helping to prevent the spread of COVID-19. In our partner communities, many families rely on daily income and lack access to decent housing and clean water making it difficult to social distance. At Habitat Haiti, we remain committed to employing local masons, increasing access to clean water, and providing families with safe homes. This month, our families have been equipped with hand washing stations and water storage materials. In Saint Louis du Nord, a community in the north of Haiti, we continue to build homes with the help of women builders, breaking stereotypes and empowering women to provide for themselves and their families.

     

For just $12, we can provide a hand washing station to help communities in need fight COVID-19!

Habitat for Humanity Haiti beneficiary Amerose makes the most of her parcel of land in Corail, a rural community several houses from Port-au-Prince. There, she grows corn, which she eats, and also uses to feed her chickens. Any excess she sells at the market. During a recent visit, she also showed us her pineapples, which were slowly growing on their bushes. During the summer seasons, she tells us the plentiful pineapples give off the most pleasant smell as they come in 3 to 4 in a bunch.

Amerose also makes cassava, a Haitian flatbread, which can take up to 5 days to prepare. First, she explains, you cultivate the grains, then you grind them and let them dry. Finally, you cook it. Cassava is often eaten in the morning with peanut butter or avocado. Our very own local version of avocado toast!

Amerose and her family moved into their new Habitat home last year as part of our Hurricane Matthew recovery program. When the hurricane destroyed their home, Amerose and her family sought refugee in a nearby church. Today, they are one of over 300 families in their community who have partnered with Habitat to build back stronger.

 

Tell us a bit about yourself?

My name is Taina Camy, I’m 33 years old, married with two children, a boy and a girl.

How long have you been with Habitat?

Since December 2013.

Where are you from?

I was born and raised in Haiti. I have a degree in sociology which I received from the Université de l’Etat d’Haïti.

What motivation drives you?

I have a long background in the nonprofit sector in Haiti where I have worked mostly in gender equality. I’m lucky enough to have found a job where I can fuse my passion and my livelihood. With Habitat for Humanity, I’ve been able to work on various gender related projects, which ensured that women were not left out of the conversation with home ownership and construction.

What is one of your fondest memories at Habitat for Humanity?

During one of our projects, we sent people from the community of Simon Pele to vocational school to learn construction. My goal was to make sure that everyone who enrolled stuck with the program and obtained their certificates. One young man in particular explained that a life of crime was all he knew, because he was born into it. I kept an open door policy with everyone in the program, and one day, this young man asked to see me, he brought me $1; he explained that he knew this dollar wasn’t much, and would make no difference in my life, but it was the first dollar that he had earned honestly. I was incredibly moved by that moment.

What are three words that best describe you?

Joyful, friendly, determined.

What are some of your hobbies and interests?

As I mentioned earlier, I’m very passionate about women’s rights, as such, I’m involved in several organizations that fight for the rights of women and girls in Haiti. Aside from that, I’m someone who loves life, and believe that things should bring you joy. If it doesn’t bring you joy, what’s the point of having it in your life? I love to dance, play with my children, laugh with friends, try to always spread joy.

What are some of your plans for the future?

I plan on getting a Master’s Degree and continue the work I do to empower women and girls in Haiti, especially those who are often marginalized by society and don’t have access to the tools that would help them advance in life and empower themselves.

 

Everyone deserves a decent place to live.