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Livelihoods recovery in Haiti

Grant recipient Camille Marole with his sweet stallAs part of the British Red Cross recovery programme in Haiti, we helped to promote economic regeneration through financial support.

In the months after the earthquake, the emphasis was on providing cash grants to people so they could meet their most basic needs.

For example, the British Red Cross distributed unconditional cash grants of £150 per household to the residents of the makeshift Automeca Camp, in Port-au-Prince, in August 2010.

The makeshift camp was closed by December 2012, when the last remaining families on the site were relocated to housing with support from the Red Cross.

In the Delmas 19 area of Port-au-Prince, we gave 3,500 families £85 to spend on immediate needs such as school fees, debts or food.

In addition, they were given small business development grants totalling £335 each.

With training, support and guidance from the Red Cross, families were able to use the money to improve their livelihoods and prospects for the future.

Supporting displaced people

Between October 2010 and October 2011, we also supported displaced people and host families in the South Department.

Although the South Department was not directly affected by the earthquake, between 100,000 to 120,000 people moved to this region after the earthquake and the size of an average family in the south doubled.

Communities struggled with poverty before the population shift, so life became increasingly difficult for thousands of people.

The British Red Cross funded school fees and school uniforms for more than 6,600 children for a year.

We also gave cash grants, livelihoods training and support to more than 3,000 people in the south so they could start small businesses and improve their ability to provide food and other necessities for themselves.

Business development

From helping households meet their basic needs, the livelihoods scheme moved on to supporting small and micro-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Delmas 19.

Following assessment, cash loans of up to $15,000 (£9,000) were distributed to 26 local businesses in December 2012 to help them grow and create jobs in the community.

Businesses are paying back the loans with the funds set to be reinvested back into the community to help other businesses in Delmas 19 gain access to credit services.

Eighty-one micro finance groups have also been formed, with more than 2,000 beneficiaries given access to about US$120 (£70) each.


Haiti stories

Johnny helped to dig drainage canals in Haiti’s Automeca camp.

Street trader Josette explains how a Red Cross project has regenerated her community after the 2010 earthquake.

Blogs on Haiti

A volunteer of the HRCS hands out a vaccination cart to a woman

As the Red Cross continues helping people in Haiti recover, we blog on developments in the country.

Read blogs >

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