I’ve been trying to read more news online about what’s going on in Haiti. It’s easy to live here and have no idea what’s going on outside of who’s chickens are in the yard and the local gossip. It is kind of strange that we have to read about life in Haiti online, just so we know what’s going on though.
I’ve been reading about Haiti being re-inducted into CARICOM, a move that would make trade within Caribbean countries much more possible, hopefully opening up more economic possibilities for Haiti. Haiti used to be a country that exported a lot of goods abroad. We have a friend that used to be the biggest softball manufacturer in the world. We also have an English friend who moved here 37 years ago and owned a GAP jeans company. Crazy! Now none of that exists.
I was also reading this article that talks about a large grant from the World Bank, part of which will go towards water resources (read: giving people access to water that won’t kill them when they drink it) and teaching good sanitation and hygiene practices. While the news that $5 million of the $28 million will go specifically to these projects, the fact that it will be done through SNEP is discouraging because we know that much of that will get tied up in things like air conditioning offices and buying new Land Rover’s for their staff to drive around in. The even sadder part is that we know, after doing some quick calculations, that in order to put a water filter in every home in Haiti with a population of about 9,000,000 people, the total cost would be about $10 million.
I am starting to feel encouraged though. The MINUSTAH is taking action and starting to get more active in Haiti because the hold has been lifted on what they were able to do. They are not going anywhere as we saw from the amount of building that they’re doing all over Port au Prince. They are building more cargo holds and buildings by their airstrip at the airport. Accross from the UN offices on Kanz Octobe (the road heading up to Petionville) they are busy at work building a HUGE base. There are definitely things happening. I’m interested to see what the rest of the year is going to bring. Or maybe the next few.