My name is Samantha Marois, and I have been called to serve in the rural Haitian community of Belans. We're located on the south shore of the poorest country in our world's western hemisphere. I began coming to Haiti in 2011, and I fell in love with the Haitian people. I knew I would continue to serve and partner with our brothers and sisters here for years to come, though I wasn't always sure what that would look like. I recently finished my B.A. in Psychology at a great Christian University in Minnesota and thought my service would be primarily focused around something psychology related, but it was my unique background in Dairy Goat farming (I worked at Poplar Hill Dairy Goat Farm in Scandia, MN - one of the largest in the Midwest - for 8 years. http://www.poplarhillfarm.com/index.html) that led me to the south shore to work with Reimagine Haiti.
Since the beginning of September I have been living here in the community of Belans. I will be working in collaboration with the people on sustainable animal agriculture initiatives - to begin: dairy goats. There is a high rate of malnutrition here and in surrounding villages due to limited resources. One thing that's not in short supply on the island? Goats. And ones that actually have some dairy goat bloodlines in them! One piece of Reimagine Haiti in this community is a Malnutrition Center that serves families by nurturing their severly malnurited infants and children back to health while educating them on malnutrition and partnering with the families for a lasting effect. This dairy goat initiative will serve a few great purposes: a sustainable supply of nutritious goat milk for the kids in the center, a stable job and animal education for Haitians in our community, a partnership with farmers in the mountains who can grow more crops; both to bolster their family's income and add to the local markets, and to feed the Reimagine Haiti goat herd. A side benefit will be the extra male goats who can be sold into the community for meat.
Every piece of Reimagine Haiti aims to empower the people of our community to find and use their God given talents, while also learning the value of giving back to your community. This goat farm will provide a feeling of accomplishment and positive self-worth to the Haitians who are a part of it, whether going through an animal care seminar for their own personal knowledge, caring for the animals at our farm, or growing food for us. If you have an interest in helping enrich the community of Belle-Anse, Haiti, I invite you to come alongside of us in developing this Dairy Goat herd to serve it.
The money raised will go toward the building of a lean-to and milking stanchion, purchase of some dairy goats (5 to start), transportation fees, breeding fees, preventative medication and vet checks, basic supplies needed such as water buckets and hoof trimmer, purchase of seed and fertilizer, partnership with rural farmers, hired help, etc. There is so much potential here, please join us in getting this off the ground!
Thank you for reading and thank you in advance for any way that you can support us :) Peace and Joy in Him!
- Brittany Hilker
- kathy nyhus
- Aunt Sandy
- Judy Anton
- Judy Anton
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