the mif blog

Stories of inspiring entrepreneurs and organizations, discussion and commentary of new trends in private sector development, and the latest events and publications.

Haiti Pap Peri!

Por Nara Meli

It means Haiti will not perish. And it marked the end of a presentation of the “Triennial Agriculture Recovery Plan 2013-2016” by Haiti’s Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARNDR), Thomas Jacques and his cabinet. The presentation was held at USAID headquarters in Washington, DC.  on March 4, and was attended by NGOs, multi-laterals (World Bank and IADB), and other donors.

One overall objective governs this three-year strategy: sustainable job creation

Tourism in Haiti? Yes, tourism in Haiti! (Part I)

Por Nara Meli

There has been a lot of buzz in the media lately about Haiti as a tourist destination – such as here and here. The push for this is coming mainly from the country, where the Martelly administration is embarking on a mission to raise the profile and branding of the country, and reinstate it as a unique destination in the region. More on this here. After all, Haiti used to be known as the “Pearl of the Caribbean.”

I was curious to learn more about the historical trends for tourism in Haiti, so I did a bit of research. 

Building better buildings in Port-au-Prince

Por Ryan Tang

Steel rebar protruded up from the tops of walls and homes we passed during our drive through Port-au-Prince, repeatedly giving me the impression that the builder had stopped short, unable to decide if they should more. It was my first time visiting Haiti two weeks ago and within the first 30 minutes traversing the city, the prevalence of concrete construction, of varying quality, quickly became apparent to me. A few days later we visited the plant of KayTek, a company that is challenging concrete as the norm in building by introducing Light Gauge Steel (LGS) to the market. Adam King, Executive Director, stated that LGS buildings can be constructed significantly faster and with better quality—including earthquake and hurricane resistance—for a comparable price.


LINGOs Trains MIF’s Haitian partners in capacity building: A Success Story

Por Nara Meli

As readers of this blog, you may have heard that the MIF provided assistance to its partners immediately following the January 12, 2010 earthquake. A grant of $3 million was distributed among 16 different institutions, all good performers, and with whom MIF had previously worked. What you may not know, is that as part of this emergency assistance, a 17th grant was given to LINGOs, which is a consortium of over 75 international humanitarian relief, development, conservation and health organizations. The purpose of LINGOs is to enable people working in development access learning at little or no cost. This includes project management training.

Why did MIF choose to finance this last grant? You guessed it: Capacity building. With the daily challenges the institutions faced, plus the influx of new funds to recover their capacity lost in the earthquake, the training came at a crucial time to boost the effectiveness of project management for our partners. And so in August 2010, the MIF partnered with LINGOS to conduct a project management capacity building project, to increase the developmental impact of all resources.

Haiti: Where do we stand on the road from aid to investment?

Por Nara Meli

Two weeks ago, I attended the Haiti Funders’ Meeting, which was held in Boston, sponsored by the Boston Foundation and the Kellogg Foundation. The purpose of the meeting was to learn from experiences and talk about effective practices in Haiti, as well as challenges and opportunities in supporting sustainable development, social investments and philanthropy. The conference was held over two days, and included plenary sessions on topics such as social impact investing and effective aid delivery, and smaller, more focused discussion groups on health care, nutrition, agriculture, enterprise development and finance.