In response to this threat of deforestation, VHP supports a unique and exciting community-based reforestation model. Over 15,000 fruit and lumber trees were planted this past year on the private farm plots of about 150 families. Each family receives seeds for short term food security plants such as yams and beans, and in return agrees to maintain the trees planted on their plots. Over 100,000 seeds were distributed.
In order to ensure sustainable reforestation practices tree species have been selected which provide fruit for both the families consumption and sale.
5,000 seedlings were planted in Chermaitre during 2011 and 15,000 from 2015 – 2016 as part of our efforts to repopulate the Haitian mountsides with trees and provide greater food security and financial sustainability to families.
In the second phase of the project, VHP has received grant funding from American Forests. Currently The Fondasyon Konesans Ak Libète (Foundation for Knowledge and Liberty, FOKAL), organization has awarded us a $20,000 grant.
These funds support continuing efforts focused on planting indigenous tree species and spreading awareness of the environmental importance of reforestation. This will re-establish some of Haiti’s original biodiversity and ultimately lead to the improvement of the natural systems and decrease the prevalence of erosion, flooding and crop failure. This project will continue into 2018.
To better incorporate the community, reforestation efforts have sought to incorporate VHP’s Education and Women’s initiatives. Schoolchildren and adults in the community assist with the planting processes, increasing their understanding of the importance of trees in a healthy ecosystem. The next step for reforestation is to work alongside the Women’s initiative to develop a sustainable Haitian coffee program which will provide funds for continued reforestation and more opportunities for the Women of Chermaite.
Community Fruit Garden
The Reforestation Initiative hopes to set up a community fruit garden for the primary school. The garden would allow the children to learn the basics of growing your own food.
Plant 100,000 trees
The long term goal of the reforestation initiative is to plant 100,000 trees.