Boston-based fund grants nearly $500k to Haiti orgs

The Haiti Fund at the Boston Foundation today announced $491,000 in grants to organizations involved in the reconstruction of post-earthquake Haiti. This is the fourth round of grants issued by the Boston-based philanthropy, which began after the Jan. 10, 2010 disaster. A total of 30 organizations were awarded the funding last month, according to a press statement issued today.

The fund says it leveraged support from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and the Haitian Fund for Innovation at Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors to assist in the awards.

“The last two years have seen some measured progress in Haiti, but clearly there is much more work to be done," stated Herby Duverné, the Grants Committee Co-Chair who facilitated this year’s grants decision meeting. "The key to rebuilding Haiti is to strengthen communities through coordinated efforts from an empowered government, a vibrant private sector, and non-governmental organizations. Thanks to the generosity of the Ansara family and many of our contributors, I am particularly proud of our commitment to support Haitian-led grassroots organizations, which is clearly reflected in our grantmaking this year.”

According to the Haiti Fund, here are the 2012 grant winners:

Haiti Grantees 2012
(in Partnership with the WK Kellogg Foundation)

Association des Amis des Produits Locaux (AAPL) Arcahaie $20,000

The Association of Friends of Local Products (AAPL) was founded in 1993 and has since grown into a national network of more than 125 peasant organizations. AAPL is an avid promoter of local and organic agricultural products and encourages their consumption and marketing both nationally and internationally. This grant will support the establishment of a composting center in Arcahaie, develop partnerships among local peasant groups, and provide training to local farmers.

Action Contre La Misère (ACLAM) Cayes & Torbeck $25,000

Action Contre la Misère is a Haitian-led microenterprise development program whose mission is to strengthen the financial stability of low-income entrepreneurs in urban and rural areas across Haiti. This grant will support the expansion of microfinance services in South Haiti from 500 to 700 clients. Access to credit and other financial services will allow those living in this region to have the means to generate income. They will therefore be able to stay in this region and avoid the need to migrate to urban areas for employment opportunities.

Association Professeurs Parents de l’Ecole Nationale de L’Ile-a-Vache (APPENIV) $25,000

Established in 2007, the mission of The Association of Teachers and Parents of the National School of Ile-a-Vache is to improve the quality of education on Ile-a-Vache, an island with population of 30,000, by supporting access to technology and improved infrastructure in the commune. This grant will aid in the establishment of a 24-computer lab/cyber café, which will be the first on Ile-a-Vache to provide computer training to both students and the population at large.

Combite des Citoyens pour le Développement de St. Louis du Sud (COCIDES)

St Louis du Sud, Aquin & Cavaillon $10,000

Founded in 2007, COCIDES is a platform of 158 community-based organizations that has a total of 2,500 members. COCIDES works with its member organizations to find lasting solutions to poverty and suffering through technical supervision and environmental protection. This grant will help local residents develop agricultural infrastructure through soil conservation and watershed protection, improve the conditions of production, and provide technical assistance to members of the community.

FAMILY, Inc. La Chapelle $25,000

Working to build the capacity of youth groups, teachers, women, and peasant associations, FAMILY, Inc. has partnered with Ecole Normale de Liancourt to establish a Teacher Training Academy that serves the Lower Artibonite. Through year-round cohort training to teachers and principals, the Academy provides instruction in methodology, administration, and supervision techniques to improve the quality of education in the region and to act as a model for educational reform in Haiti. This grant will build upon prior Haiti Fund support and expand teacher training services to La Chapelle.

Groupe D’Accord Solidarité Action (GASA) La Chapelle $25,000

Founded in 2005, GASA’s mission is to promote youth gender equality through education, democracy, and development. GASA aims to combat poverty and the lack of opportunities in the region, which is causing a rural exodus of young people to Port-au-Prince. To alter this trend, they founded the Vocational School of Desarmes (EPD) in 2008. This grant will support training for 20 male and female youth in La Chapelle in civic participation, leadership and local governance, new farming and breeding techniques, and the creation of small and medium social enterprises. The project will include training and accompaniment for peasant groups who will work in collaboration with students and faculty at the Vocational School of Desarmes.

Organisation des Jeunes pour l’Avancement de St. Ard (OJAS) $25,000

Founded in 2008, the mission of Youth Organization for the Advancement of St-Ard (OJAS) is to support youth, elected officials, and nonprofit organizations in St-Ard (a locality in historic Arcahaie) through development projects focused on education, health, sports, agriculture, and rural livelihoods. This grant will support a project to install 20 solar-powered street lamps that will both provide light and access to power, allowing students to study in the evenings and acting as a deterrent to crime.

The Grameen Creative Lab Mirebalais $25,000

The Grameen Creative Lab Haiti seeks to implement the “Yunus & You Haiti” (YY Haiti) Initiative, which incubates and finances small and medium social businesses, with the ultimate goal of strengthening the private sector in Haiti while tackling the social needs of the country. This grant will fund a portion of the start-up costs for the creation of a non-dividend social enterprise of local poultry and cattle production and a grinding mill. This business will also create local distribution centers throughout the region in order to fully engage local supply chain transporters and market vendors. Profits will be reinvested in other community social businesses.

In Partnership with the Haitian Fund for Innovation at Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors

ActionAid USA National $20,000

Founded in 1972 to fight poverty throughout the developing world, ActionAid has been working in Haiti since 1996. Through the Rights to Land and Housing for the Haitian People project, ActionAid Haiti has been establishing a Land and Housing Rights Advocacy Network by strengthening grassroots leaders and civil society groups to exercise and secure their right to a transparent and inclusive national housing strategy. The 2012 Haiti Fund grant will continue support for the Rights to Land and Housing for the Haitian People project through the “Je Nan Je Platform” comprised of 10 Haitian grassroots networks that represent over 800,000 people across the country. The “Je Nan Je Platform” increases the participation of civil society in Haiti’s reconstruction and facilitates stronger communication, information sharing, and decision-making processes between key actors.

Beyond Borders / Fondasyon Limyè Lavi $15,000

Jacmel, Bainet & Marigot

Since 1993, Beyond Borders, through its Haitian counterpart Fondasyon Limyé Lavi, has been working for justice and peace by promoting education in Haiti. With a strong commitment to local partnerships with Haitian grassroots groups, they have helped support networks of individuals and communities who are addressing the educational needs and human rights issues of traditionally marginalized groups and those without access to basic services. To improve access to quality education for children in underserved communities in Southeast Haiti, this grant will support school networks that provide parent and teacher trainings as well as community-building work centered on children’s rights.

Bureau des Avocats Internationaux (BAI) National $20,000

The Bureau des Avocats Internationaux (BAI) is Haiti’s largest and most successful public interest law firm. The BAI deploys a combination of legal, organizing, media, and political strategies to enforce the human rights of vulnerable communities in Haiti. This grant will support BAI’s work in six principal project areas: Rape Accountability & Prevention Project, Housing Rights Advocacy Project, Universal Periodic Review, Health and Human Rights in Prisons Project, and the Cholera Case Project through legal advocacy in Haitian tribunals as well as in international human rights courts.

Collectif de Lutte contre l'Exclusion Social (CLES) Fort Liberté $15,000

Founded in 2002, Collectif de Lutte contre l’Exclusion Sociale (CLES) fights poverty and exclusion by creating synergies between social, economic, cultural, and environmental organizations. This grant will support the development of agricultural infrastructure in the Maribahoux valley, improving the performance of the rice sector and resulting in increased investment, employment generation, and better access for producers. This project will include the construction of two drying pastures, a 100-square-foot storage facility, and the rehabilitation of a hangar that will act as a designated marketplace.

Ecole Normale de Papaye Hinche $15,000

Since 1983, the Ecole Normale de Papaye in Hinche has run a three-year teacher certification program. In addition, the school also provides professional development seminars to local teachers to improve the quality of elementary education provided by uncertified teachers in the region. This grant will support the school’s efforts to complete construction of the female dormitory and repair the roof of the male dormitory (both damaged in the 2010 earthquake) so that the school can resume the full schedule of its professional development teacher trainings.

Economic Stimulus Projects for Work and Action, Inc. (ESPWA) National $15,000

ESPWA’s mission is to help low-income Haitian individuals, families, and communities help themselves so that they can attain and maintain self-sufficiency and dignity. The organization supports Haiti’s reconstruction efforts through capacity-building of Haitian organizations and by acting as an intermediary focused on strengthening and developing the infrastructure of Haitian civil society. This grant from the Haiti Fund will support the strategic planning process for the establishment of a Haiti community foundation, an institution that does not currently exist.

Fair Trade USA National $15,000

Fair Trade USA is the leading nonprofit, third-party certifier and promoter of Fair Trade Certified™ products in the US. Fair Trade USA enables sustainable development and community empowerment by cultivating a more equitable global trade model that benefits farmers, workers, consumers, industry, and the environment. This grant will support a targeted capacity building program for the Haitian mango cooperative FENAPCOM, affiliated organizations, and producer groups, allowing them to increase their potential for certification and to improve access to international markets.

Fondasyon Zanmi Timoun Gressier, Delmas, Las Cahobas & Savanette $15,000

Created in 2001, Foundation Zanmi Timoun is an alternative education and reunification program focused on displaced and vulnerable youth. Their Education is Necessary for Development program supports four community schools that have successfully piloted an accelerated education program designed by the Ministry of Education that enables over-aged and out-of-school children to complete the primary school cycle in three years. This 2012 grant will continue to support this program in the four schools.

Global Health Action Leogane $10,000

Global Health Action’s mission is to create healthier communities around the globe through education and training in leadership, management, and health promotion. Their three main objectives are to build community leadership and train future leaders, to build the capacity of community leaders and managers to develop effective and efficient rural development programs, and to ensure sustainability of programs. This grant will support the establishment of a network of community-based animal health workers in Leogane commune through training, community capacity-building support, and initial seed capital for veterinary kits.

Groupe d’Action pour l’Habilitation Economique et Sociale de la Famille Haïtienne (GRAFHES) Torbeck & Chantal $10,000

GRAPHES’ mission is to build capacity in communities through training and technical assistance aimed at reinforcing local potential and discovering local competencies. GRAFHES also promotes agricultural production thereby improving living conditions and strengthening civil society. Since 2007, they have been working in the South Department providing nearly 13,000 students with a snack and hot meal throughout the year. This grant will support the establishment and improvement of 10 processing units to raise the capacity of women’s groups to produce peanut butter and cassava for sale to the school meal program. This will promote female entrepreneurship, build local production, and diversify student diets.

Groundswell International / Partenariat Pour le Développement Locale $15,000 St Michel, Bahon, St. Raphael, Pignon & Monbin Crochu

Focusing on building the capacity of rural communities, Groundswell International’s Haitian partner organization Partenariat pour le Développement Local (Partnership for Local Development or PDL) has used support from the Haiti Fund to strengthen the capacity of three peasant organizations working in 125 rural communities. Using volunteer trainers and farmer-to-farmer exchanges, PDL’s focus is on expanding food production, health care resources, and income-generating activities. This grant will support PLD’s efforts to provide support and training to rural peasant organizations, strengthen local leadership, and increase the sustainability of these rural communities.

Haiti Grassroots Watch National $15,000

Haiti Grassroots Watch (HGW) is a grassroots media “reconstruction watchdog” project that works in partnership with and builds the capacity of two Haitian media organizations and two networks of radio broadcasters. HGW equips journalists working in print, radio, and visual media to report on the humanitarian aid industry within a historical and political context and with an analysis of the structural causes of Haiti’s problems. This grant will support training in investigative journalism and the production, coordination, training, and distribution of media in partnership with alternative media outlet groups Alterpresse, SAKS, REFRAKA, and AMEKA.

Haiti Partners Leogane $15,000

Haiti Partners is a network of educators, community leaders, and development professionals with decades of in-country experience that are committed to the mission of “Helping Haitians change Haiti through education for students, teachers, leaders, and disciples.” They seek to help Haiti realize a future with thriving schools for children, faithful churches, stronger institutions, and democratic and economic growth for the nation. This grant will help to establish a chicken hatchery social enterprise (with managerial support from the Grameen Creative Lab) that will support the long-term growth and sustainability of 4 partner schools in Leogane.

Haiti Projects Fond des Blancs $12,000

Since 1994, Haiti Projects has been empowering women in rural Haiti to lift themselves out of poverty, become self-sufficient, and build stronger families and communities. True to its commitment, Haiti Projects established the Artisanat Cooperative, which has enabled many women of the Fond des Blancs region to develop their skills as artisans. Through the creation and sale of heirloom quality textile goods, the women of this cooperative have been able to provide for their families while also supporting community services such as a family planning clinic, a library, a micro-lending fund, and an educational scholarship. This grant will support the training of members of the cooperative in English, computer literacy, and management, thus increasing the women’s engagement in the project.

Initiative pour le Développement Durable d’Haïti Terrier Rouge $12,000

Initiative for the Sustainable Development of Haiti (IDDH) works to promote agricultural development and environmental protection in Haiti’s Northeast department. This grant will support a pilot project (in collaboration with six other grassroots organizations) of community goat farming in enclosed pens that will sustain and support IDDH’s successful school gardening program in Terrier-Rouge. This project will also incorporate agricultural education into the curriculum and improve the nutritional content of student meals.

Matenwa Community Learning Center La Gonave $15,000

Matenwa Community Learning Center (MCLC) is a 15-year-old community-based initiative on the island of La Gonave that focuses on social change and sustainable development. This grant will offer continued support to the Joint Education and Agriculture project to promote child-centered learning, encourage Creole instruction, and introduce vegetable gardens and improved agricultural practices in 10 La Gonave community schools.

Mouvement Paysan de la 3eme Section Camp-Perrin (MP3K) $15,000

MP3K is a non-profit grassroots organization that brings together about 2,900 member farmers and peasants. This group has been active since 1990 and focuses on organizing the peasant community around agriculture, training, health, and education. This grant will support the planting of 10 hectares of manioc (cassava) using new agricultural techniques, the creation of two processing mills, and the planting of 20,000 tree seedlings in deforested areas to help improve soil quality.

Organisation des Leaders Evangeliques pour le Développement des Sections Communales de l’Artibonite (OLEDSCA) $15,000

The Organization of Evangelical Leaders for the Development of the Communal Sections in the Artibonite (OLEDSCA) and its affiliate, Lawyers Association for Legal Aid (AAAL), together seek to create in every commune and rural section a frame of reference for all interested in sustainable, integrated development in Haiti. Founded in 1998, OLEDSCA has worked in human rights, education, justice, health, rural development, and the environment. This grant will support the development of a Legal Aid office/clinic to provide representation to indigent clients and inmates throughout the Artibonite region.

One Village Planet – Women’s Development Initiative $12,000


One Village Planet-Women’s Development Initiative (OVP-WDI) is committed to improving the health, safety, and economy of impoverished rural communities in the developing world. OVP-WDI created a farming cooperative in Derac, Fort Liberté involving 213 women as active agents in solving problems of food poverty in their homes and communities. This grant will empower these women to grow and sell their own food through the establishment of an irrigation system and the installation of solar panels that will run submersible pumps on two wells.

Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Church (OLQP) $15,000

Petite Rivière de L’Artibonite

Our Lady Queen of Peace Church in Arlington, VA has had a parish “twinning” relationship with St. Joseph’s parish in Medor, Haiti since 1997. The partnership aims to improve the education, health, environment, and livelihoods of the people living in remote rural mountainous communities throughout the 74-square mile parish. These grant funds will support the expansion of a community-led agroforestry project (in partnership with Trees for the Future/Haiti) that will build nurseries, train residents as para-foresters, and transplant 60,000 trees in the mountainous area of Medor, Petite Rivière de L’Artibonite.

PeaceQuilts Port-au-Prince & Milot $10,000

PeaceQuilts’ mission is to relieve poverty in Haiti by establishing and supporting independent, self-managed, and self-sustaining women’s sewing cooperatives. They provide each cooperative member with a living wage through the marketing and promotion of their work as well as the facilitation of sales in the US and beyond. This grant will offer general support to the sewing cooperatives in order to establish a marketing plan, and expand and further develop the administrative and operational support necessary to improve productivity and access new markets.

Rasambleman Fanm Nip (RAFANIP) Petite Rivière de Nippes $10,000

RAFANIP is a women’s organization in Petite Rivière de Nippes that helps women farmers improve their lives economically, socially, and culturally. RAFANIP also works to eliminate all forms of gender-related discrimination and violence against women. This grant will fund a cow breeding project that will distribute cows to women beneficiaries as well as provide the necessary training to these women and the community at large, thereby increasing the economic power of women.