HAITI - A new co-operative farm was unveiled this week as part of an expanded sustainability programme supported by Love A Child and backed by the USA Poultry and Egg Export Council (USAPEEC).
On Wednesday 17 September, the new Poul Mirak (Miracle Chicken) Co-operative Farm at Gwo Mache Mirak (Grand Miracle Market) in Fond Parisien, Haiti was the place to be for the unveiling of a newly expanded sustainability program. Love A Child, Inc., hosted the dedication ceremony for the new Poul Mirak Chicken Co-operative Farm, a program backed by the USAPEEC International Poultry Development Program, which is expected to produce a unique source of sustainable income for Haitian families in the region.On hand for the dedication ceremony were representatives from the USAPEEC International Poultry
Development Program, Haitian dignitaries, such as Vice Mayor of Ganthier, Franckel St. Louis, customs officials, management from Haiti Broilers and administrative staff members from Love A Child, a 501 non-profit Christian humanitarian organisation serving the needs of children in Haiti.
One of eight interconnected sustainability initiatives developed by Love A Child, the Poul Mirak project is composed of nine chicken coop buildings. Each chicken house will hold about 500 chickens that will be raised by the newly trained co-operative members. The chickens will grow to maturity in only six weeks. The goal is to sell at least 500 each week at the Gwo Mache Mirak marketplace.
In a country where nearly 80 per cent live below the poverty line and families struggle to survive on around US$2 a day, the positive impact could be transformative. Having successfully operated a smaller chicken co-op program in 2013, where the farmers raised and sold 500 chickens within six weeks and profited around $1.39 from the sale of each chicken, this newly expanded initiative supplies an increased opportunity for meaningful employment at living wages.
“Not only will Poul Mirak offer locals in the community of Fond Parisien an opportunity to buy fresh, protein-rich food, but it will also provide a new model for sustainability in Haiti that shows the world how chicken co-operatives can produce sustained economic results,” shared Bobby Burnette, founder and director of Love A Child.
Funded through grants from the USAPEEC International Poultry Development Program, Mike Welch, and Larry Guest, as well as gifts from Love A Child partners, the chicken co-op will provide more than just a stable source of income for the chicken farmers.
There are five co-operative members who together will bear all the responsibility for operating costs, labor and share in the profits. The five co-op members have received training and ongoing mentorship will also be provided from personnel of Harrison Poultry, out of Bethlehem, Georgia, and from the Love A Child missionary staff. Through ongoing mentorship, the program is expected to continue to grow as a resource for helping Haitians break the cycle of poverty for the long term.
Additional sustainability initiatives developed by Love A Child include an agricultural training center, edible plant nursery, life skills training, financial services, and reforestation projects.
For more information about the Poul Mirak Chicken Co-operative Farm, the Marketplace (Gwo Mache Mirak) or Love A Child’s eight sustainability initiatives, please visit www.loveachild.com.ThePoultrySite News Desk