We have so many awesome friends doing amazing things around the world. One of them is our friend Jason. He was on our very first trip to Haiti and we have roughed it out with him many times! His venture to help Haiti become a self sustaining nation has only just begun.
Our friend Jason and one of our Justice Water staff members, Jacques.
Earlier in 2012, he launched a Haitian coffee importing business called Trezo d’Haiti. When you think of coffee, you might not think of Haiti now. Once, though (not too long ago) Haiti supplied half of the world’s coffee. This business venture is aiming to provide a way for Haitians to gain back their financial independence, community development and future of their nation through creating sustainable farmers and workers.
From their website:
Haitian coffee does not come easy. It is not mechanized. It is not hybridized.
It is a man with a small hill-side plot, meticulously tending his plants with the same care and vigilance his own father practiced. On this plot, a Haitian farmer will cultivate his entire livelihood – the avocado that will feed his wife, the bananas that will feed his children, and the coffee that could one day provide his family with a sustainable income. He grows with his family and his country in mind. He grows to restore an industry that was once a source of pride for his people, before decades of deforestation, economic hardship and political unrest plunged the nation into poverty.
Despite having overcome devastating obstacles, Haitian farmers have clung to the original cultivation methods used by their ancestors to build a once thriving coffee industry. By preserving the unmodified, all-natural “Typica” plant, these farmers produce beans with a direct lineage to those first introduced by the French in the 1700’s. Handpicked under natural shade canopies, each cup of Haitian coffee has been 300 years in the making.
Trezo d’Haïti isn’t about offering charity to poor farmers; it’s about providing proud cultivators with the opportunity to share their treasured coffee with the rest of the world. To them, we lift our cup.
“Men anpil, chay pa lou”
“Many hands make the load lighter”
So…consider ordering some Haitian coffee, knowing that when you drink it you are making a difference! Not only is it fair trade, it is empowering the people of one of the neediest nations today.