A continuous battle against food insecurity

Everyone helps to bring stones for the walls.

Haïti – Where there is too little water, food insecurity inevitably comes into play. This is already the case in the north of Haiti, in the Moustiques, Denisse and Trois-Rivières region.

Nicolas Piervil knows the situation all too well. He works for ODRINO, which has been a partner of Join For Water in Haiti for many years. Nicolas coordinates a team of 5 agricultural experts. Together they protect slopes from landslides, produce seedlings for planting trees and support farmers in growing fruit and vegetable gardens. All these activities are designed to reduce food insecurity in the Moustiques, Denisse and Trois-Rivières region.

Nicolas testifies: “Good water availability is crucial to reducing food insecurity in the region. But we notice that droughts are lasting longer and longer. It is therefore of vital importance that we properly protect our water sources and use the available water wisely.” Sources offer natural water reservoirs. They feed rivers and other bodies of water. If sources are not protected, the storage capacity decreases, followed by the flow of the rivers, until they completely dry up!”

The measures meanwhile sound familiar, but the fight against the drought remains a massive challenge in the hills of Haiti. Using stones or branches and earth, the farmers build walls or small barriers to hold back the earth that would slip after a rain shower. A lot more is required. “We protect resources in several ways: by demarcating them so that people can’t immediately reach them, and by reforesting the hills, because that ensures that resources are replenished. On a bare hill, water and soil immediately flow away, on a wooded hill the water has time to penetrate the soil. We convince people not to cut trees anymore and guide them to other economic initiatives.”