Rebuilding Haiti must start from the ground up, with agricultural education
Haiti Reconstruction International: Dedicated to fòmasyon of Haitians to run sustainable businesses that conserve resources, improve food security and health.
Priorities for our main program:
We need to create income in these fields.
Need facilities for
1] Haiti’s problems reach much farther than earthquakes and hurricanes. The greatest problem in Haiti is Soil Erosion. Experts from Vetiver International are working with HRI and we have the solution; mixing high technology with practical natural methods. Vetiver hedgerows stop erosion, but every mountainside in the entire country needs to be planted. These hedgerows make there own terraces while making its own compost saving uncountable hours of labor. As terraces form they start holding moisture and nutrients for farmers to grow more food that is protected from washing out by vetiver’s 3-meter roots.
The original cause of erosion is from cutting trees for charcoal to cook with.
HRI’s immediate plan is to cut the need for charcoal and bring business opportunities for Haitians to build and sell improved TLUD cook stoves burn vetiver grass leaves which will be the most abundant fuel available.
There will also be business opportunities for making biomass fuels for the stoves Pyrolitic gasification process burns cleanly and leaves biochar. Supplementing biochar into the soil works like a sponge that holds water, nutrients and microorganisms that are needed by plants and animals.
The WINNER program which will have planted 4.6 billion vetiver slips in the next few years will be a great place to start cutting grass to make into pellets. This biomass will produce fuel that can be used in TLUD stoves.
Haiti Reconstruction International is a non-profit charitable organization dedicated to agriculture, conservation and food security. We educate and provide Haitians with the tools they need to start their own businesses to become self-sufficient. We also maintain Haiti Reconstruction web site to connect all non-profit organizations to keep them informed on our training facility for their Haitian communities and for expert advice on conservation, clean water, sanitation, and safe cooking stoves and increasing a healthy food supply.
We also maintain Haiti Reconstruction (website), which is a social networking organization whose members are of NGO’s, sister parish groups, aid workers, and volunteers who are trying to improve the conditions throughout Haiti. The web sites are designed to connect all our efforts into a powerful force to empower the people of Haiti to become self-sufficient through agriculture and conservation education. Our website also directs them to Haiti Reconstruction Intl whose Haitian teams on the ground can train and give loans so they can buy their own tools and materials for ownership in their sustainable businesses as they become self-sufficient.
Our members have worked and studied Haiti’s most desperate problems and believe we have come up with the best possible solutions. Haiti’s root cause of food deficiency comes from erosion and loss of good soil coming from lack of trees and ground cover on Haiti’s mountainous terrain.
Everyone knows the trees are all gone from continual cutting for charcoal.
Not everyone knows the extent of the damage the erosion has made.
When there is no soil, there is nothing to hold back the water, ground water can even dry up, wells and water sources go dry.
When there is no soil, there are no nutrients'. Plants continue to shrink and goats fight for food.
When there is no soil, trees will not even grow where they once flourished.
When there is no soil, plants dry up so much faster, without plants and trees breathing moisture in the air the clouds aren't seeded to rain and draughts last longer.
When hurricanes come, there is no resistance in air or land to stop washing away what little there is.
When there is no soil, there are no microorganisms to break down particles for plants to absorb. With poor sanitation and no good bacteria in the soil, worms and disease like cholera run rampant. Poor sanitation and with to floods anthrax outbreaks come often as land is unearthed. Houses and villages are flooded then covered with silt and more lives are lost.
Solution to the problem:
We have to stop the erosion and bring back the soil. Reforesting the hillsides will not stop the erosion.
We need another prescription, something else with deep roots and something to replace the need for cutting trees.
Vetiver grass roots grow 3 meters deep! It withstands hurricanes; floods fire and droughts will not kill it.
Vetiver grass hedgerows stops erosion as it captures leaves and debris, when planted correctly it makes its own terraces! It is stronger than steel for holding back landslides.
Vetiver grass holds moisture, its roots brings water down to replenish aquifers. It also cleans polluted water of nitrogen, phosphorus and pathogens
Vetiver grass is great forage for ruminant animals and fodder for ground rich in NPK. Plants grown between the rows grow better from nutrients they provide and insects they keep away.
When everyone starts growing vetiver it will be the largest biomass crop available since the leaves should be trimmed 2 to 3 times per year making the largest energy source available in Haiti.
Vetiver grass can be burned in TLUD improved cook stoves all over Haiti making biochar.
This can stop the use of charcoal and trees will grow again. Atmosphere will improve making better weather patterns. Fruit trees can be planted on mountainsides.
Biochar holds moisture and is the best hotel good microorganisms can find. It enhances fertilizers from all composted materials, which turn into terra preta.
Terra preta will make plants healthy and resist disease, growing an abundance of healthy plant food.
Healthy food will make healthy animals and also people who eat them.
Healthy people take care of themselves and their families becoming self-sufficient as they conserve their land.
Haiti Reconstruction International (HRI) Business Plan
This facility will be a self-sustaining business run and trained by Haitians under the guidance and rules set up by Haiti Reconstruction International so that both those who work can make a living and product costs are low enough to make a successful business.
Greatest needs for improving Haiti with business potential:
Vetiver Hedgerows and 3-step mountainside gardening program; stops erosion and holds back earth slides, makes it's own compost and terraces, holds nutrition and moisture, brings up ground water levels. makes possible to grow more food on mountainsides.
Improved Cook Stoves; eliminated need for charcoal, health with clean air, cost factors, makes biochar for fertilizer enhancement & soil supplement to hold moisture and microorganisms, use of vetiver pellets, lowers CO2 levels.
Composting toilets; sanitary disposal, best fertilizer available, healthy, works well with biochar
BioSand water filters; clean water for remote homes
Biomass for energy; electricity for remote villages, cook stoves and small engines
Our 1st project will be the Improved Cook Stoves because it is the most likely to succeed quickly and leads to our other projects.
1: Develop a market for TLUD stoves to change fuel to save trees and keep economy in Haiti. This would create new businesses for those who now cut trees to make charcoal and alternatives fuel to sell for those who currently sell charcoal.
2: Instruct the Trainees new concepts of the stoves, which benefit the consumer by saving money, conserving resources and producing bio-char to produce more food, using permaculture solutions that work smarter and not harder.
3: Introduce new conservation methods of soil enhancement with vetiver hedgerows that also provides biomass for cooking fuel
4: Instruct them how to develop and prepare biomass fuel sources for stoves.
5: Show them how to build TLUD stoves and enclosures for practical use
6: Instruct them how to run a business, which may require a loan to develop their business.
7: Provide opportune projects that will make a profitable business
We will start with making fòmasyon (Creole meaning formation & training) centers where we provide business opportunities for Haitians.
1. Train fòmasyon center leaders
2. Train apprentices how to build new improved TLUD cook stoves.
3. Train apprentices how to make biofuel for new stoves.
4. Provide tools and materials to loan they need for stove and fuel making.
Plans for starting projects in Haiti
1: Find Fòmasyon Recho location in Haiti; work out details with owner and rent needed for center.
2: Find a leader for Fòmasyon center that will be in charge of trainers, speaks English, has Internet skills to administer website, add pictures and updates of activities of Formation Center. He also must be willing to communicate with us daily if necessary. This will be an important position since our program hinges on their competency.
3: Find people who live nearby willing to learn to be trainers. Their training will be free but they will not get income until they start training apprentices.
4: Find materials and tools needed for stoves, whether from the US or Haiti. Set up a contract price that can be renegotiated yearly.
5: We will have trainers in different fields;
Funding a sustainable program that can grow large enough to help the entire country
1: We must buy materials needed at the lowest possible costs to make businesses profitable and our program self-sustaining. If costs are even we buy in Haiti to stimulate their economy
2: Instructing trainer costs are covered under Plans #3, for their training they are responsible for own housing costs
3: Nonprofit groups helping communities throughout Haiti will send 5 members of their community to be apprentices. The non-profit groups will provide for the trainers fees paid to our Loan Officer and email HRI to record payment.
4: Apprentices get a loan for the materials and tools, which they do not have to pay back until they sell their stoves and need more material. Starting with the 2nd order they must pay for new material. In addition they must pay a percentage (not yet determined) on their outstanding loan.