Today, on International Women’s Day, we are celebrating the women of Haiti, who make an incredible contribution to society there every day.
Our projects like Chache Lavi – which supports women to set up their own businesses – empower women in Haiti to lift themselves out of poverty and build a bright future for their families.
Here, we meet two of the women we work with, and hear their amazing stories.
Jascinthe Laguerre is a participant in our Chache Lavi programme on Île à Vache, and recently launched her own new business.
Coming from the community of Grand Sable, Jascinthe is a timarchant [small trader] with a market stall in the village of Madame Bernard every Monday and Thursday. She buys and resells food products, including rice, beans, and more.
Jascinthe’s personal goal is to finish and modernise her house: on Île à Vache, that means installing solar electricity, running water and an indoor toilet. She wants to move out of credit, grow her own business and reinvest what she earns through that by opening a store by her house.
Here, she explains the impact that Chache Lavi is making in her life.
“ Since starting the programme, I have received a lot of training, and I learned a lot about subjects I didn’t know – self-esteem, autonomy, human rights, nutrition, entrepreneurship, and budgeting.”
“I am married and have one child… I live with my husband; he is happy that I am part of the Chache Lavi programme.”
Before the programme, my life was getting on little by little. Now, my life is more as I wish it to be. I am very, very happy with the programme.
Jascinthe spoke these words while undertaking the Orientation Phase of the programme and, at the time, her business plan was being finalised. Since then, her business was approved for financing and she launched it on 21 July 2016!
Osette Vantile is a participant in the agricultural training course as part of our Income Generation Programme.
“My name is Osette Vantile. I am married and have six children. I live in La Fortune on Île à Vache.”
“I have received training in Haven’s agricultural programme. During the training, I was taught how to prepare the land and grow plants. I learnt about two crops during my training: before the training, I did not know how to plant these crops. Before, I would have planted pistache [pistachios] and corn only.”
“I have not planted all the crops yet, but I will do so. For example, I will plant pepper and poivron [bell pepper] now too because of the training. I have learnt many techniques from the training, like that pistache should be planted above ground and I should separate different crops.”
“I have found the training very good and my garden is now beautiful with crops. The crops I produce will help me feed my children and I can sell excess crops at the market in Madame Bernard to help send my children to school.”