MAISON L'ARC-EN-CIEL, HAITI
Driving change and saving lives
In 1995, Danielle Reid and Robert Pénette founded a foster home in Haiti for children affected by AIDS. This virus was the leading cause of death in Haiti, with around 300,000 people infected and 180,000 children affected or infected by HIV / AIDS. Explore how MAEC is working to build a healthier, more sustainable community.
Maison l'Arc-en-Ciel, Haiti, is an NGO, founded December 1, 1996, serving vulnerable HIV-infected and -affected children in Haiti. For long-term sustainability, the orphanage has been engaging in major income-generating projects, including agriculture, a hen house, farm animals, goats, bees for honey, renewable energy and other innovative projects. Still, the organization is in need of financial support and partnership as it continues its vital mission. GIFT encourages you to learn more about and consider supporting this wonderful ministry.
GIFT and Honey for Haiti have raised USD 42,000 for the installation of an 18kW Solar Array. With this increased energy available to them, Maison L’Arc-en-Ciel will be able to generate much of the funding needed to continue providing crucial services for children and teenagers impacted with HIV/AIDS in Haiti.
MAEC utilizes both traditional and worm-based composting, also known as lombrio-composting. They have received support from the Digicel Foundation, Haiti’s largest cell provider, to expand their composting initiatives and to work with 30 local families on setting up their own lombrio-composting bins. This will allow locals to improve soil quality just as MAEC has, and creates an opportunity for the orphanage to generate income through the sale of compost to other farmers.
Across the three chicken coops at MAEC, the orphanage has the potential to produce 1,800 chickens every 8 weeks, at a profit of $4.50 per chicken, resulting in almost USD 50,000 potential profit every year. The chickens are raised, processed, packaged and sold to local businesses, hotels, restaurants, and members of the extended community.
In 2014, only a small portion of the 8-acre
property was cultivated, and the soil health was very poor. Now, over 75% of the land is cultivated with a wide variety of crops, and the health of the soil has improved significantly. The cultivation of the land is a very important part of the overall project as this provides much of the food for the orphanage, allowing fresh and healthy meals to be available for the kids and staff. Excess crop is stored for sale to local
Beekeeping was the first project that was launched at MAEC. The orphanage has five hives and the honey is a treat for
the children and teenagers that is commonly mixed with nutritional supplements to improve their health. The presence of bees is also very beneficial
for the various agriculture projects.
Vocational training is a critical aspect of the income-generating projects at MAEC. As we work with MAEC to bring in experts to help improve the current projects, we leverage the opportunity for the young adults to learn more about these trades and how they can acquire skills to assist in their eventual reintegration into Haitian society.
DANIELLE AND ROBERT PENETTE
Executive Directors and Founders