Major funding for Haiti-Dominican Republic border
WASHINGTON, USA — More than $1.1 million will be used to improve agricultural training, marketing and planting more profitable crops along the impoverished Haiti-Dominican Republic border, the Pan American Development Foundation (PADF) announced on Friday.
"This project will improve the lives of thousands of small-plot and substance farmers," says John Sanbrailo, Executive Director of PADF. "This new funding builds on PADF’s successful record of being a catalyst for sustainable economic development along the border."
With funding from the US Mission to the Organization of American States (OAS) and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), PADF will teach farmers how-to manage and sell more profitable crops, create business plans, apply for government loans and credits and reach more consumers.
The one-year initiative allows PADF to work with 30 producer groups in seven communities on both sides of the border. In the Dominican Republic, PADF will work in Pedernales, Comendador and Dajabon. In the Haiti, PADF will focus on Anse a Pitres, Fonds Verrettes, Belladere and Ouanaminthe.
The 193-mile frontier between Haiti and the Dominican Republic faces a plethora of problems, including poverty, unemployment, lack of infrastructure and misunderstandings about the potential of bilateral development. Haiti is the poorest country in the hemisphere with approximately 80 percent of the population living in poverty.
PADF has been working on the border for five years. Its program, called "Fwontye Nou/Nuestra Frontera" in Creole and Spanish ("Our Border" in English), provides training, technical assistance and cross-border projects that have created economic solutions, bi-national cooperation, cross-border conflict mitigation, and a framework for communities on both sides of the border.
Ambassador Albert Ramdin, the Assistant Secretary General of the OAS and chair of the Haiti Support Group, called on other countries to dedicate more resources to this border region.
"I want recognize the US Mission to the OAS, as well as the IDB’s Multilateral Investment Fund, for their leadership in supporting this important program is that providing cross-border models and methodologies that can be used and expanded by other donors," says Ramdin.