The Whole-of-Government Approach
By 4:12 PM on January 13, 2010 – less than 24 hours after the quake – a USAID Disaster Assistance
Response Team (DART) arrived in Port-au-Prince as part of President Obama's mandate for a “swift, coordinated, and aggressive effort to save lives.” In response to the extraordinary scale of the disaster, the U.S. deployed staff and assets from 17 government agencies and departments, including USAID, the Department of Defense, and domestic agencies sent for the first time to work outside the United States. The U.S. response would grow to include 20,000 civilian and military personnel who supported key early efforts such as the largest urban food distribution in history to 3.5 million people; emergency shelter distribution to 1.5 million people; and a vaccination campaign for more than 1 million people.
As we move forward, USAID and the U.S. Government are committed to advancing Haiti's short-term recovery as well as the long-term success and prosperity of its people. There are significant challenges ahead, and the reconstruction process will be long and difficult. But we are confident that by working in partnership with Haitians and the international community, we can help Haiti build back better.
USAID is collaborating with other USG agencies on the implementation of the Post-Earthquake USG Haiti Strategy. USAID partners include:
USAID has an interagency agreement with U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) to undertake wind, solar, and solid-waste-to-energy studies to determine the feasibility of renewable energy options in Haiti. USAID is studying the feasibility of solar panels on the Northern Industrial Park industrial buildings to supplement generation with clean energy, as well as is evaluating proposals to implement improved cooking technologies.
Pillar B: USAID is collaborating with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) through an interagency agreement to build the capacity of the Government of Haiti’s Ministry of Agriculture to deliver key services in the agriculture sector. The agreements aims to enhance service delivery in several areas, including plant and animal health, agriculture training and extension, data collection, and market information systems. To achieve economic security, the U.S. Government supports macroeconomic reforms in: (1) revenue generation, to mobilize the country’s resources for its own development; (2) budgeting, to ensure greater transparency and efficiency in expenditure; (3) monetary and banking policy to allow the government to manage the economy by expanding or contracting the money supply and to keep inflation low; and (4) the legal and policy environment in which businesses operate, including legislation and procedures related to registering property, protecting investors, enforcing contracts, and employing workers. U.S. Department of Treasury’s Office of Technical Assistance (OTA) assistance focuses on revenue administration, public budgeting, government debt issuance and management, and banking and insurance regulation, while USAID aims to provide technical assistance and increased access to financing for micro, small, and medium enterprises.
Pillar C: The Health Strategy for Haiti has been coordinated across USG agencies, including USAID, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and U.S. Department of State’s Office of the Global AIDS Coordination (OGAC). USAID works closely with CDC to coordinate health programming in Haiti, particularly in the area of HIV/AIDS activities through the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) program and cholera activities using the clinical and community-based PEPFAR platform.
Pillar D: USAID is working closely with a number of agencies to implement USG Haiti Strategy in the areas of Governance and Rule of Law to implement a comprehensive program in the areas of governance and rule of law. USAID partners with the U.S. Embassy Narcotics Affairs Section (NAS), and the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Office of Technical Assistance (OTA). USAID, NAS, and OTA work to strengthen legal and policy framework, Government of Haiti anti-corruption units, and the government’s financial management system that was mostly destroyed during the 2010 earthquake. For example, USAID election support activities have been instrumental in the most recent election cycle, ultimately being a success and representing the will of the Haitian people, while NAS provided crucial support to the Haitian National Police during a period of grave political and societal instability.