Celebrating An International Woman of Haiti

By John Jordan

One woman in Haiti embodies the progress women can make under even the most challenging circumstances.

Meladette Dalphinis has been a member of the Movement of Bayonnais Farmers (MBF) for some years.   This group is supported by World Neighbors, a small NGO based in Oklahoma City that relies primarily on private support.

Hurricane Matthew heavily damaged Dalphinis’s hot pepper and leek fields.  MBF and World Neighbors gave her a loan of about Fifty U.S. Dollars ($50) to replant her fields. She also used the loan to dig and stock a small fishpond.   Fish are fed household food waste in Haiti.  Water from the pond, enriched with fish waste, is used to help irrigate her fields—cutting down on fertilizer and its costs.  Once mature, her family will have a steady source of protein.   Surplus will be sold in a local market, which will benefit other families.

Finally, Dalphinis invested a small part of the Fifty Dollars ($50) in an earthworm system.  The worms produced fertilizer for her crops, reducing the need for chemical fertilizer, along with their financial costs and health risks.   The worms produced so much fertilizer, Dalphinis was able to sell it to her neighbors.  This past January, she sold a bag for about Seven U.S. Dollars ($7.25).   Dalphinis used this innovative method of fertilizer and eventually the profits from the fish, to repay the loan.   Dalphinis plans to use future profits to send her adopted son to school and further increase production of produce, livestock and fish.

With a small investment, technical assistance and determination to improve her family’s chances in life, Dalphinis has come through the hurricane more productively and financially secured than before.

Dalphinis embodies the promise of International Women’s Day and illustrates how international development organizations can them people realize it.

To learn more about Meladette Dalphinis, please contact John Jordan at jjordan737@yahoo.com.