The factory floor of Le Jourdain Atelier located in the city of Cap-Haïtian in Haiti’s northern coast was the perfect setting to host a high-level delegation from Haiti and the U.S. to showcase the impact that a small and medium business investment project funded by USAID and implemented by PADF
Partnerships are invaluable to development. In fact, in Belize they are at the center of a new initiative that will help at-risk youth from marginal areas have a chance to learn new job skills and train to become small business entrepreneurs.
When growing up in Brazil, I enjoyed tossing small stones into a pond near my grandparents’ backyard. At times the stones would strike a rock, scare a fish, or cause a big splash. However, what I loved most of all was seeing the ripples move outward from the point where the stones entered the water.
The merchants of Simmonds-Pelé, a neighborhood located in the Port-au-Prince metropolitan area, are beginning the year with a new market where they can sell their goods. It’s an exciting moment, because for many it is the first time in more than 15 years that they can feel good about the place where they do business.
Think for a moment about this number: 21 million people around the world are victims of forced labor. They are often coerced and later trapped in jobs from which they cannot escape. Of that number, more than 1.8 million are in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Human displacement remains a continued challenge around the world. According to UNHCR Global Trends 2012 report, an estimated 35.8 million people were displaced last year, of whom approximately half—some 17.7 million people—were forced to move within their own countries.
This year’s Interaction Forum in Washington D.C., included a significant number of workshops and conversations on disaster mitigation and risk reduction. I attended one that I really knew very little about, entitled Serious Fun: Promoting Disaster Risk Reduction through Participatory Games. How can talking about disaster risk reduction be fun? I wondered.
It took me a while to even get the word right, and even harder was when I had to say it in Portuguese: Meliponicultura. The management of stingless bees or meliponiculture is a literally sweet and less risky business than the more known beekeeping of African bees (with stings).
Last week, the In-Kind Donations program team allowed me to be part of one of its regular working days. An early start took us to the soon to be demolished Walter Reed Hospital in Washington D.C. to finish a long journey that this PADF team began last summer.
Last February 5, I participated as the opening keynote speaker at the Inter-American Defense College (IADC) Seminar on Large Scale Disasters and Complex Emergencies. The seminar was held at Fort McNair Washington, DC and examined the various phases of disaster management
Our work with the Government of Colombia continues to grow and expand. Yesterday, PADF signed a new agreement at the Organization of American States (OAS) in Washington D.C. that will help us support even further Colombia’s priority to prevent at-risk children and youth from being recruited by illegal armed groups.
I remember the conversation with my colleagues about looking for someone to be PADF’s Ambassador for children’s rights, and I remember suggesting to them Jimmy Jean-Louis, a fellow Haitian who had gained popularity on a television show I had been following, named “Heroes”.
For the first time ever, the Haitian government is able to properly supervise the border at the Belladere-Elias Pina border crossing. Up until 2009, the Haitian police, migration, and customs were in offices 2km from the border. They had no means of supervising the border or of controlling what entered the country.
Two years after awarding Amarylis Castillo the title of Hero of the Hemisphere, she has continued her fight to raise living standards of the poor farmers in the Dominican-Haitian borderlands. PADF met Amarylis at the site of her newly completed avocado processing facility.