Wednesday, January 12th marks the one-year anniversary of the devastating 2010 Haiti earthquake. When the earthquake struck, CHF International had been working in Haiti implementing a major USAID-funded jobs and infrastructure program and was immediately able to respond by removing rubble, building transitional shelters, and providing cash-for-work opportunities to provide livelihoods to displaced Haitians. Recovery progress has been made, but much remains to be done.
Many other disasters have struck Haiti. Since the earthquake, cholera and election violence have complicated the delivery of humanitarian aid and thrown the logistical challenges into relief. However, these challenges—and many others—are being overcome through a committed partnership with the Haitian people and their institutions. CHF’s innovative and community-oriented solutions have been successful because they engage the people and ensure that the progress made is sustainable even after the NGOs leave.
Since the earthquake, funded by USAID, corporate partners, and your donations, CHF has:
Removed 265,404 cubic meters of rubble, employing 14,970 Haitian workers. We are also undertaking the only large-scale rubble recycling project on the island. To date we have recycled almost 3000 cubic meters of rubble, transforming ruin into usable building material for essential infrastructure like roads and clinics.
Constructed over 4,600 shelters, capable of housing more than 28,470 people. CHF has focused on building shelters directly in people’s home neighborhoods- not camps. By sheltering people in their home communities, we reduce violence, social disorder and keep people close to their essential social networks and employment.
Partnered with the private sector to complete two major training centers; one with Caterpillar to train Haitians in heavy machinery operation, all of whom are now employed by our rubble removal program. Our Haiti Apparel Center trains tailors, engineers, managers and executives in best business practices. Since its launch in August almost 400 people have graduated, giving much needed highly trained staff to a key Haitian industry.
Achievements like these are living proof that by working with the communities, identifying their needs and priorities, engaging the Haitian people’s energy and drive and working towards sustainable, market-oriented solutions, Haiti can recover and move to a better future. But we need your help to keep going.
While CHF may be building the physical structure, it takes the Haitians themselves to turn their shelters into homes. CHF's role is as a catalyst for the communities themselves to rebuild their lives and their country.
Our Haitian Innovations flickr stream showcases shelters that Haitians have customized to make their own. CHF gives families a shelter—but they make it their home. Check it out here.