Development and Peace has collected close to $20 million from Canadian donors to go towards emergency and reconstruction programs in Haiti after the Caribbean nation was hit by a devastating earthquake on January 12th, 2010.
The organization, which specializes in sustainable development and long-term reconstruction, forecasts being in Haiti over the next five years to support grassroots organizations as they rebuild their communities.
The organization has already disbursed $2.5 million for emergency aid, such as the distribution of blankets, food kits, tents, water containers and the construction of latrines. As part of the Caritas Internationalis network, Development and Peace participated in a large emergency operation led by Caritas Haiti and Catholic Relief Services that reached an estimated 200,000 people in and around Port-au-Prince.
Part of this sum has also gone towards addressing new issues that are beginning to arise in the aftermath of the quake, such as the threat of food insecurity. The Mouvement Paysan Papaye received funding for the distribution of seeds to ensure that crops are planted and to help re-launch agricultural production. Other activities include security patrols in camps help protect women and children, community radio programs to pass on vital information to the population and the integration of displaced children into schools. Part of the funding has gone towards helping these organizations to get back on their feet as many were not even left with the walls of their offices.
The organization has also just committed $6 million towards a post-emergency program that marks the first phase of its reconstruction initiative. The focus of this program will be on food security, the re-launch of economic activities and initial efforts to rebuild houses. It will be carried out by over a dozen local organizations, which Development and Peace has identified as key stakeholders in their communities and who can best reach the most vulnerable. These partners include peasant associations, women’s associations, community radio stations, religious communities, youth groups and human rights organizations. Discussions are also underway to provide a second phase of support to Caritas Haïti and the Caritas network.
In order to best carry out this long-term reconstruction process, Development and Peace has opened a local office in Haiti, where a full-time Development and Peace staff member will be based to offer technical support to these partners as they begin the critical process of rebuilding their homes, their communities and their country.
Visit our Haiti Emergency page for regular updates and stories from Haiti.