DloHaiti: First community meeting in Bwa 9
The meeting began at 3pm and finished at 4pm. The meeting was organized by Pastor Hilaire, and Jim Chu (the Director of DloHaiti) was present. Poliferan (the point person for marketing and logistics) was present, and myself, Louino Robillard (the Community Outreach officer) was present. There were more than 50 community leaders present, and they were cross-sections of people from all ages - from 70 years old to 18 years old. The community representatives were a mix of women and men, and were comprised of church members, school directors, and young people from the area.
Pastor Hilaire presented the project, and also took the time to talk to people about the broader vision for the community enterprise zone. Then he passed the speaking to Jim, who explained what DloHaiti is, what it was doing in Bwa 9, and what he will do to create an entrepreneurial spirit in Cite Soleil. Jim spoke about the work of DloHaiti, and how they believe in transparency.
The participants showed that they were interested in this and paid close attention. Poliferan spoke about why DloHaiti didn't use water sachets or little plastic bottles, which was to protect the environment.
There were people who asked questions about what other opportunities that DloHaiti was bringing into the community.
Jim said that he believed if this succeeds, it will be a model that other investors will follow to invest more in the community of Bwa 9. `
But Jim also said that what was important was all of the small businesses in the community that will buy good water at a better price, which will help them diversify their business, and that will help Bwa 9 and other communities to have more control over their local economy.
Robi spoke about why he was present in the community, and because he didn't believe in charity because it leads to dependence that is destroying the country. This model is a model that will help people, while maintaining their dignity. It is a model that will help people create business instead of dependency.
People said that DloHaiti would succeed in Bwa Nef because they know that there will be more opportunities that will come to Bwa Nef.
-Louino Robillard, MA
Community Outreach Officer