Two years after the 2010 earthquake that hit Haiti, thousands are still homeless. In Mariani (Carrefour, Port-au-Prince) due to a lack of land for shelter, livings conditions continue to deteriorate despite repeated broken promises from the authorities.
In 2011, ActionAid Haiti supported a social movements’ campaign entitled “Je nan Je” (Eye to Eye) to demand aid transparency and accountability after the earthquake (particularly on land and housing).
People living in Mariani camps were sensitized and mobilized. They came together and demanded that the Haitian Government guarantee their rights to land and housing.
Meanwhile, “ActionAid-trained” and “women-led” inter-camp committees identified unused land nearby. This is how Marie-Charles Juste Luce, a sensitized camp-member, located unused land in Gressier (30 minutes from Mariani). Camp members immediately mobilized to negotiate with the local authority there. In December 2011, 15,382.55 square meters were given to Cozpam (ActionAid’s partner) for the shelters’ construction.
216 families will be able to move into this secure land. Legal ownership is in the process of being transferred to a collective, community-based savings & loans entity composed of camp members themselves. As such they are currently moving from a situation of being “victims” to one of “empowered ownership” with the capacity to make decisions on the future.