Five Years After the Haiti Earthquake:
Reflecting on Impact
Written by Plant With Purpose on January 15, 2015 in General
Significant events that impact Plant With Purpose’s field programs are always on our radar. Monday, January 12 marked the fifth anniversary of Haiti’s devastating earthquake that killed as many as 300,000 people and left more than a million homeless. Despite significant challenges, Haiti is making progress in rebuilding. To help Haiti create a brighter future, Plant With Purpose continues to partner with rural communities to increase food security and community resiliency, reverse erosion and land degradation, and empower farming families to build a more stable future.
In the immediate aftermath of the earthquake, Plant With Purpose’s local Haitian team initiated a short-term employment program which employed over 2,500 rural Haitians by planting 600,000 trees and constructing over 360 miles of soil conservation barriers to halt erosion and restore fertility to damaged farms. Plant With Purpose also distributed over 90 tons of seeds, which equipped farmers to begin to feed themselves again.
Executive Director Scott Sabin shares, “Plant With Purpose’s local staff has partnered with Haitian farmers for over 15 years. When the earthquake struck, we were ready to respond to the emergency. Our long-term relationships enabled us to integrate our emergency relief efforts with our long-term agricultural development programs, which is what we remain focused on today.”
Plant With Purpose is committed to help Haitians sustainably rebuild their lives and communities through economic empowerment, environmental restoration, and spiritual renewal. Since the earthquake, Plant With Purpose has:
- Planted more than 1,700,000 trees to reduce erosion, provide fruit, and increase farm yields
- Built 1,068 miles of soil conservation barriers to restore farms and prevent deadly mudslides
- Worked with over 22,000 farming families to teach sustainable agriculture
- Distributed 1,321 safe drinking water systems to protect families from cholera and other water-borne illness
- Launched 135 Village Savings and Loan Association groups across 88 rural communities with an accumulated savings of more than $158,000 USD
“I am tremendously inspired by the resilience of my Haitian friends. We have seen great progress in the communities where we are working, despite the ongoing challenges,” Sabin said. “We remain committed to helping rural communities restore their lives and lands, and to live with hope for a better future.”
To help Plant With Purpose partnering families in Haiti, consider sponsoring a village.