Project Maison L'Arc-en-Ciel
La Maison L'Arc-en-Ciel d'Haiti (MAEC) is an orphanage located in Kenscoff, Haiti. The children that live in the orphanage are infected or affected by HIV/AIDS and stay in the orphanage until they are old enough to reintegrate into Haitian society.
In 2015, director of MAEC, Danielle Reid Penette, expressed her desire for their organization to be able to function without being wholly-reliant on donations by implementing sustainable development projects.
Phase one of the project took place in June 2015. Honey for Haiti volunteers extended the roof of the chicken coop, built a goat pen, and constructed free-standing covered feeding area for the goats. Before these additions, Danielle was having trouble keeping the goats alive and healthy and therefore was unable to expand the herd.
The agricultural component of this trip included soil testing, reorganization of both raised-bed and in-ground gardens, and the assembly of several composting bins (both traditional compost and worm composting). Included with each of the aspects of the agriculture project were hands-on lessons for the children and staff of MAEC.
Honey for Haiti volunteers also assembled several beehives and hired local beekeepers to introduce swarms to the hives. Our volunteers also gave lessons concerning how the children and staff should act around the hives to prevent any potential accidents.
Lastly, a community library was organized using books the orphanage already owned, but had no practical way to check them out. Over six hundred barcodes were put on the books and a check-out system was created so the children and local community could use the books.
After leaving Haiti, our donors were able to support the construction of a large chicken coop, processing room, and commercial composting system. The chicken coop has more than tripled production and has allowed the orphanage to be a reliable chicken vendor to community members, local restaurants and stores.
While several other projects have been completed since 2015, Honey for Haiti expects the capstone project to be completed by Q4 2021, a large solar array to support the needs of MAEC and their income-generating projects. Stay tuned on our social media for updates!
Current Projects at Maison L'Arc-en-Ciel
Switch to Solar
Beginning the switch from a diesel generator to solar power will have a positive financial impact on the orphanage, reduce their consumption of natural resources and provide a clean energy source for the children that is beneficial to the environment.
This is the largest project that Honey for Haiti is trying to support at the orphanage but will likely have one of the largest impacts.
The implementation of both a traditional composting area, as well as an additional "lombriocomosting" or worm composting project, will allow fresh nutrients to be added to the agriculture projects, as well as assisting in keeping the soil moist to reduce water consumption. MAEC has also supported 30 local families in their own composting efforts with the support of the Digicel Foundation.
This is the fuel to make Maison L'Arc-en-Ciel more self-sustainable. Danielle and her team, with the support of the foundation and Honey have Haiti, have focused on expanding the farm plots across the property, including fruit frees, moringa, and a wide variety of crops that can be used and sold locally. As the composting project improves we hope it can be used to improve crop yield in the agriculture development projects.