Working with Haitian Diaspora
Haitian Diaspora Offer Unique and Valuable Skills
USAID considers Haitian Americans to be vital to Haiti’s development. Haitian Americans have unique relationships, linguistic skills, geographical awareness, and technical expertise that are instrumental in helping Haiti build back better than it was before the earthquake. USAID provides opportunities for Haitian nationals to return to Haiti and contribute their professional and expert skills to the relief and reconstruction efforts, and to build capacity within the Haitian community to manage complex projects to international standards.
USAID Opportunities for Diaspora
USAID has a number of programs that specifically aim to attract Haitian expertise and leverage support provided by the Haitian Diaspora community.
The Emergency Capacity Assistance Program (ECAP) leverages the expertise of Haitian Diaspora to strengthen local public institutions involved in the shelter sector to development and implement plans to guide growth and improve urban management in Haiti, ensuring efficient use of both financial and natural resources. ECAP is helping municipal governments in the North plan for new housing settlements by preparing for the selection of beneficiary households that will acquire starter houses which they will expand through their own sweat equity, as well as supporting municipal and community planning to maintain new infrastructure and services in these new settlements. ECAP is also providing technical assistance to a number of Government of Haiti ministries, including the Ministry of Public Works, Transportation, and Communications to improve the technical and management skills of 60 engineers who are responsible for ensuring technical oversight and quality control of reconstruction and resettlement projects in metropolitan Port-au-Prince. Additional information on ECAP can be found here: http://haiti-ecap.com/
The newly launched Leveraging Effective Application of Direct Investments (LEAD) project will improve access to investment capital for Haitian businesses and strengthen their business skills. The project aims to attract investments in Haitian small and medium enterprises through a matching grants programs; USAID anticipates that potential investors in Haitian SMEs will include members of the Haitian Diaspora. The project also explores innovative ways to promote Diaspora philanthropy through pooled remittances for social investments or small infrastructure projects. A website will be launched shortly where Haitian Diaspora can access information on LEAD and learn how to contribute through this program to enhance their investment.
Employment opportunities for Diaspora are being created by USAID through our traditional process of posting solicitations for new awards in Haiti (www.fbo.gov and www.grants.gov). USAID highlights Haitian Diaspora skill sets as appropriate for these awards. In the contracting process, we adhere to federal guidelines that mandate awards are made to organizations that can perform work effectively and at the lowest possible cost. There are many cases where the organization best suited for the job has been and will be a Haitian-American firm. USAID also participates in and organizes outreach events in the United States to provide information to Haitian Diaspora on how to do business with USAID.