Some basic statistics to illustrate the problem:
Water: The majority of water sources in Haiti, even wells, must be considered contaminated. Over 1,000 families, 6,000 registered individuals, are using Gift of Water filtration systems which, if used properly, guarantee clean water. Since cholera was introduced to Haiti in 2010, nearly 10,000 people have died from the disease. Clean-water habits which were established thru GofW trainings helped the B-R community remain largely unaffected.
Shelter: Community leaders identified twelve homes which were in desperate need of repair/replacement. Their interpretation of "need" was based on the condition of the home and the owner's ability to cope. Homes of traditional stick construction with mud walls and and thatched roofs are replaced by a 360 sq. ft., two-room home and porch. Thanks to local volunteers, the average cost of the homes has been less than $14/sq. ft.
Transportation: Like the public space provided by the community center, transportation is key to countless other possibilities. The community truck facilitates medical visits, funerals, supplies, education, group picnics, soccer, and contact with the rest of the world. Most importantly, it provides this community with a sense of independence that comes from being able to travel when the need arises.
Food: Hunger in this rural community is pervasive. In 2014 &15 B-R suffered from drought. In 2016 Hurricane Matthew destroyed 80% of the gardens and fields. Since the 2010 earthquake, FBR has provided three emergency food allotments. Collaborators from St. Thomas Aquinas Church, Indianapolis (STA) provide lunchtime meals to over 700 school children. Occasionally the "most needy" young children in the village are invited to enjoy a hot meal on Sunday afternoon. We are exploring new ways to encourage food production through the distribution of garden seeds provided by Seed Programs International (SPI) and through the use of hand-operated grain and nut mills developed by Compatible Technology International (CTI).