Government of Canada

Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada


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International development projects in Haiti

International development projects in Haiti

CIDA disbursements in Haiti: 2011-2012

CIDA disbursements in Haiti
Amount in $M
Long-term development assistance
Total 159.92


Haiti is the poorest country in the Americas. With a population of 10.1 million, the country ranks 161 out of 186 on the United Nations Development Programme's 2012 Human Development Index.

Development efforts in Haiti experienced a setback in January 2010 when a powerful earthquake hit the capital, Port-au-Prince, and neighbouring regions. The earthquake killed 230,000 people, displaced 1,300,000 people, destroyed infrastructure, and severely disrupted basic services and economic activity. Progress in reconstruction was slowed in 2012 by two major hurricanes (Sandy and Isaac), which caused extensive damage to the island. Canada provided emergency humanitarian assistance to Haitians affected by these natural disasters, and played a major role in recovery efforts throughout the country.

Haiti is Canada's largest aid beneficiary in the Americas. In total, between 2006 and 2012, the Government of Canada delivered more than $1 billion in development and humanitarian assistance to Haiti.  

More than four years after the 2010 earthquake, Haiti is beginning its transition out of recovery, and renewing its focus on long-term development. In 2012, the Government of Haiti launched its long-term strategic development plan (Plan stratégique de développement d'Haïti : Vision 2030) as well as a new framework to coordinate development assistance.

As Haiti transitions towards longer-term development, Canada is reviewing its engagement in order to maximize aid effectiveness and support the achievement of sustainable results.

Thematic Focus

In 2009, as part of Canada's new aid effectiveness strategy, Haiti was selected as a country of focus. After the earthquake, Canada worked to ensure that its programming met Haiti's priorities for rapid recovery, reconstruction, and development.

Canada focuses its international development assistance in line with its thematic priorities: Children and Youth, Sustainable Economic Growth, and Food Security. Advancing democratic governance, equality between women and men, and the environment are integrated as crosscutting themes.

Children and youth, including maternal, newborn and child health

Canada focuses on helping the government of Haiti develop health and education systems and improve access to quality basic education and health care. For example, Canada supports large-scale school feeding programs that provide school children with one hot meal per day, which improves their ability to learn.

Key anticipated results
  • More women and children with access to free health care in hospitals and clinics throughout the country
  • More schools rebuilt and more children with access to school—due to tuition grants—school meals and school kits

Economic growth

Canada focuses on supporting efforts to increase the participation of vulnerable populations in economic activities that support the economy  by providing microcredit and financial services through savings and credit cooperatives. Canada also supports job creation, in part by hiring local works to staff labour intensive projects  such as rebuilding/repairing schools and increasing agricultural production. Canada is also helping to improve governance by making public institutions more effective, responsible and transparent.

Key anticipated results
  • Increased sustainable economic activities with an emphasis on women in targeted communities
  • More Haitians with access to microcredit

Canada works with a wide variety of international, Canadian and local partners to create the necessary conditions for a more prosperous future for haitians.

Progress on Aid Effectiveness

Canada continues to work closely with the Government of Haiti and other donors to ensure that its programs are aligned with Haiti's priorities, harmonized with the efforts of other donors, and achieve results that benefit the poor.

Achievements 2011-2012

Children and youth, including maternal, newborn and child health

  • Helped 35,000 children (half of whom are girls) attend school
  • Increased access to free obstetric care provided by skilled health workers for about 330,000 pregnant women
  • Helped cure 60 percent of Haiti's 33,000 tuberculosis patients and detect 5,200 new cases, with the support of United Nation's agencies.

Food security

  • Helped farmers in three areas increase agricultural production by about 25 percent, ensuring they had more food to feed their families
  • Provided training, tools, seeds and livestock to 13,800 families (about 69,000 people) to help them produce their own food and improve their nutrition

Economic growth

  • Improved financial services for more than 417,000 members of a savings and credit cooperative network enabling them to better manage their finances and take advantage of economic opportunities


  • Helped register another 200,000 citizens in the civil registry, providing them with legal status which enables them to access basic services, apply for credit, obtain property titles or vote (this project has now reached more than 5 million people since 2008—90 percent of the adult population)

Humanitarian assistance

  • Provided essential primary health care services to 80,000 women, men and children living in the Lower Delmas area of Port-au-Prince
  • Through support to the International Organization for Migration, helped relocate 3,174 families to camps with better conditions, 4,884 families move out of the camps and into better housing and prevented 8,820 individuals in camps from being evicted (For photos before and after, see United Nations Development Programme Web site)
  • Helped make 40 camps for earthquake survivors safer for women by installing new solar-powered lights near showers, latrines and water distribution centres, through support to the United Nations Population Fund.

As of March 2012, Canada had fulfilled its $400 million commitment to reconstruction and recovery but continues to help Haiti in its long-term development efforts.

Achievements 2010-2011

Children and youth, including maternal, newborn and child health

  • Increased access for girls and boys to quality teaching
  • Registered 24,000 children in displaced persons camps on the civil registry, providing them with identification and access to basic services
  • Increased immunization coverage rates for measles and rubella, from 44 percent in 2006 to 66 percent in 2011, and for polio, from 61 percent in 2008 to 78 percent in 2011

Food security

  • Provided 400,000 girls and boys with a hot meal every day of the school year, enabling them to improve their learning

Economic growth

  • Helped increase membership in the savings and credit cooperatives network, which includes 47 cooperatives and 24 points of service, by 20.6 percent (total number of members: 369,000) and helped provide stable, permanent employment in rural regions through the network
  • Helped revitalize the national agricultural sector, enabling 400,000 people to increase their income and food security
  • Contributed to the priorities of the Interim Haiti Recovery Commission, including housing and debris management


  • Helped register 4.8 million people in the civil registry since 2008—about 85 percent of the adult population—enabling them to access basic services, apply for credit, obtain title to property, or vote
  • Participated in the Interim Haiti Recovery Commission and the Haiti Reconstruction Fund to ensure that the rebuilding process is being managed effectively, transparently and responsibly

Humanitarian assistance

  • Continued to respond to the ongoing and urgent needs of those still suffering the effects of the devastating earthquake and the widespread cholera epidemic of 2010
  • Constructed 3,200 transitional shelter units in Port-au-Prince, Léogane and Jacmel
  • Provided clean drinking water, latrines, and cleaning facilities to 75,000 people
  • Vaccinated 60,000 children against common diseases
  • Enabled 85 percent of the affected population to have access to cholera treatment and/or cholera treatment centres

Achievements 2009-2010

Children and youth

  • Helped provide access to quality health services for sexually transmitted infections for 1,140,000 Haitians, including youth, in 11 of the 15 communes in the Artibonite region

Food security

  • Distributed more than three million sweet potato cuttings, 970,000 cassava cuttings, 11,600 toolkits, 176 tonnes of grain and legume seeds, 102 tonnes of manure, and 38 tonnes of compost to Haitian farmers to help improve their food production

Economic growth

  • More than 350,000 Haitians became members of 48 credit unions with 28 points of service. This represents a 17 percent increase in loans, a 16 percent increase in savings, and a 13 percent increase in membership. The network provides hundreds of permanent jobs in rural areas, and enables hundreds more to manage a democratic and legally recognized institution.


  • Produced and distributed nationwide more than 480,000 identification cards, thus enabling people to access public services and vote
  • Contributed $12 million for the post-earthquake construction of temporary offices for key Haitian government departments

Humanitarian assistance

  • Contributed to the provision of emergency food aid to 4.3 million Haitians, water and sanitation services to 1.3 million Haitians, emergency and temporary housing to 370,000 households, and relief items following the earthquake

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