Field visits

Latin America: Telling the Leopard's Tale

April 30, 2013
by 
Mary Durran, Latin America Programs Officer

“The story of Africa has been documented by the hunter, and not by the leopard,” said Portuguese academic, Boaventura de Sousa, who has called for history to be retold from the perspective of the victims of colonialism, genocide and unbridled capitalism.

Peasant struggles honoured by commemorative day

April 18, 2013
by 
Marie-Hélène Roy, Youth Programs Officer

April 17th marked International Day of Peasant Struggles. This day was launched in Eldorado dos Carajas, Brazil, in 1996, after the assassination of 19 peasants who were members of Brazil’s Landless Rural Workers' Movement (MST), a Development and Peace partner. Around the world, peasants are struggling daily against deforestation, land grabbing, the polluting of water and soil, but also to improve their living conditions.

Honduras: New laws put communities at a disadvantage

April 19, 2013
by 
Mary Durran, Latin America Programs Officer

The people of the Siria Valley in Honduras may have breathed a sigh of relief in 2010 with the closure of the Canadian-owned San Martin gold mine that sits in their midst, but now they must brace themselves for further environmental destruction and depletion of their water supply. In mid-January, after two years of negotiations and opposition from civil society, a new mining law was finally approved by the Honduran Congress.

Honduras: “We are not stealing or begging – we are demanding what is rightfully ours.”

April 18, 2013
by 
Mary Durran, Latin America Programs Officer
Fernando is the group leader of the Indigenous Lenca Movement of La Paz, who are trying to reclaim their land.

In Honduras’ mountainous southern department of La Paz, mornings are chilly and the altitude is ideal for coffee growing. Here, the dark-skinned indigenous Lenca people make up 80% of the population. Yet, from the poverty and the discrimination they endure, one might think they were a minority.

In this community, four out of ten children die before they reach the age of two from a poverty-related disease. Most of the girls become pregnant while still minors, and in the community of Santa Elena alone, eleven women died last year in childbirth.

Haiti: When sharing experiences strengthens civil society

April 18, 2013
by 
Marie-Hélène Roy, Youth Officer

Since the earthquake of January 12, 2010, Development and Peace has been supporting a number of reconstruction projects put forward by various Haitian civil society partners. So, after more than three years, where are we in this extremely complex process of rebuilding a society that was already socio-economically vulnerable and whose weakness was exacerbated even further as a result of this natural disaster?

Honduras: Development and Peace supports the women of the Siria Valley on International Women's Day

March 8, 2013
by 
Mary Durran, Latin America Programs Officer
Women of the Siria Valley have heavy metal presence in their blood due to a mine

It has now been two years since the suited managers of the San Martin open pit gold mine, owned by Goldcorp, packed their bags and left the Siria Valley in central Honduras. They had spent literally hundreds of hours of air time, reassuring the population that the mine hadn’t harmed the surrounding environment.

As proof, they even built an eco-tourism hotel on the mine site, raised cattle and poultry and planted eucalyptus trees everywhere – although the thirsty nature of these in an area with a gradually diminishing water supply seemed to escape them.

A New Leaf: A timely reminder that a crisis does not just disappear

February 27, 2013
by 
Kelly Di Domenico, Communications Officer

This summer, I travelled to Niger and Mali to report on the food crisis that was gripping the Sahel region of West Africa, as well as the impact that political instability in Mali was having on the population. Accompanying me for the Niger part, was a crew from Salt and Light Television, who we had invited to come to document how the population was coping and our response. Together, we visited villages where the threat of hunger was a daily struggle. We also visited a refugee camp for Malians fleeing the violence in their own country. We could see the despondency of the people in the camp, having been completely uprooted from their homes and without any real idea as to when they would be able to return, if ever. It was a journey of discovery for all of us, and I was anxious to see how this story would be told in the documentary.

Haiti: Women at the heart of reconstruction

February 12, 2013
by 
Khoudia Ndiaye, Communications Officer
“I’m a mother of three children and I work five days a week. I’ll sometimes come to the construction site on weekends too because, three years after the earthquake, what matters most to me is the reconstruction of my country,” says Ismène Elismar Garçonnet, one of the chief engineers tasked with producing houses in Ti-Boucan.
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Today we’re celebrating in Ti-Boucan!

February 12, 2013
by 
Khoudia Ndiaye, Communications Officer

A crowd of nearly 300 people gathered in Ti-Boucan on February 5, 2013 for the inauguration ceremony in honour of our house-construction project.

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Fifty houses built in Ti-Boucan! On the way to our goal!

February 5, 2013
by 
Khoudia Ndiaye, Communications Officer
Raphaël Sene, Foreman of Door and Window Production

Development and Peace’s housing project in Haiti would not be possible without the residents of Ti-Boucan, the workers and craftsmen in the factory that was set up to create the materials, and the Institut de technologie et d’animation communautaire (ITECA). And after several months of non-stop work, the first houses are springing up from the ground!

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