Hello, I'm new to Haiti Reconstruction so I haven't followed your page on "Bank&Infrastructure Needs". My question is has anyone here heard of the Banque Haitienne De Développement" (BHD)?
This was a cooperative bank, 51% owned by cooperatives beginning back in 1999. This was an innovation in a time when microcredit-caisses populaires had alrady been set in motion. The idea of the BHD was what I've caught here briefly and in the NYT's article Can Microlending Save Haiti? Doesn't Haiti's poor need more than microlending?
The BHD was shuttered illegally in 2002 with some skullduggery on the part of a couple of members and the central Haitian bank. The apparent motivation beside individual crime is that the power structure of for-profit banks wouldn't want any such coop owned full service bank.
My organization is working to strengthen the cooperative movement in Haiti which has never really been able to rise above small development and microcredit. I've set up a new website: http://kowopsayiti.org
There you can see --not a "Ning" fancy masterpiece--what we're up to. And the reopening of the BHD is part of the solution. A strong national network of full-fledged coops is the other piece.
Thank you all for all this amazing work I see on the site.
Tom Luce, http://hurah.org
, Berkeley, Ca. PAP