Americas / Haiti

Replenishing mangroves in Haiti and achieving resiliency

Tom Wessels, President of MI Americas, visiting the degraded mangroves in Haiti in January 2017


People will experience resiliency from mangrove restoration


Families will be protected from the effects of climate change

The 2016 Climate Risk Index lists Haiti as one of the three most affected countries suffering extreme weather conditions. Environmental vulnerability, over-exploitation of natural resources, frequent natural disasters, poverty, and lack of awareness and education of the population all contribute to the degradation of Haiti’s mangroves.

The effects of the mangrove deterioration are severe, and they are getting worse each day. The mangrove itself is of paramount importance, both economically and ecologically to Haiti, and represents one of the most productive ecosystems. Haiti’s mangroves are disappearing at a rate of up to 2% a year, and their impending loss is extremely worrying, especially as it may accelerate according to changes in sea level, due to climate change.

Mangroves play a critical role protecting the coastal regions from the natural elements and they feed nutrients to coastal areas in Haiti. The waters around mangroves are also generally rich in shrimp and fish, and they are also home to various species of crab and fish. Now, this is being threatened and livelihood are being impacted. Less food, less income, and more poverty and malnutrition are among the some of the devastating consequences.

Our new mangrove project takes aim at replenishing and restoring mangroves on the coast of the urban slum of Cite Soleil. Village des Rapatriés, our main project community, has one of the few remaining mangroves areas in the metropolitan area of Port-au-Prince. The mangrove ecosystem is severely degraded and contaminated with waste and human feces.

As part of the mangrove restoration project, four tree schools will be installed along the coast and at least 25 acres of mangroves will be rehabilitates and reforested. It will also include community-based environmental training, and awareness campaigns and community mobilization centered on disaster preparedness, climate change, WASH, and food security. While the mangroves are being rehabilitated, Haitians who have had their livelihood affected will have the opportunity to participate in alternative income pilot programs. The pilot programs will also feature alternative possibilities for sustainable fish farming, sustainable fishing, and fuel efficient cooking methods.

Nearly 10,000 families -or 50, 000 people- will directly experience the effects of the mangrove restoration, and almost 300,000 people in Cité Soleil will benefit from a more resiliency in the community, an increased awareness to disaster preparedness, and the positive impact of a stronger partnerships with the local partners.

Partners: EuropeAid, BMZ, CCPCCS, DPC l‘Ouest, ABIUDEA


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