Haiti update from Permaculture relief expert Andrew Jones

Andrew Jones is currently in Baja Mexico and I will be contacting him about coordinating permaculture oriented relief efforts (permacorps)
~evan (@gaiapunk)
Dear friends and colleagues,
Many thanks for all your expressions of concern and support regarding the situation in Haiti, I know we all share a concern for what can be done in order to contribute to an effective response and long-term abundance and real security for the immediately affected and wider population of Haiti.  I spent a month with Shenaqua in Haiti last summer working with the Internation Association for Human Values, and teaching two permaculture courses there.  Our feedback thus far from Haiti is that all our graduates are safe in terms of immediate earthquake impacts.  We are working on a medium term program to support our local graduates in carrying out trauma counseling using tried and tested approaches championed by IAHV, as well as longer-term, permaculture-based strategies to help promote local food, and water security, safe housing  etc.  A general program description follows below:
Nouvelle Vie *Haiti*, an ongoing project of the International Association of Human Values (IAHV- http://www.iahv.org). IAHV is an international humanitarian and educational NGO that aims to revive human values that transcend religious, ethnic and cultural differences. IAHV along with its sister organization, The Art of Living Foundation, has conducted effective trauma relief programs addressing the psychosocial needs of disaster victim in numerous post-conflict and natural disaster situations around the world, including the 2008 hurricanes in Haiti, the Sichuan earthquake in 2008 the South Asian tsunami in 2004, the Kosovo conflict, and many
others, and have served many thousands of individuals through these efforts.
IAHV’s Nouvelle Vie *Haiti* has over the past two years conducted youth leadership, sustainable agriculture, and entrepreneurship training, impacting 350 young adults from 5 regions of Haiti: Cap Haitien, Mirebalais, Hinche, Carrefour and Les Cayes. The earthquakein Haiti has now devastated the country and our youth leaders on the ground in Haiti. We are preparing to undertake a new mission to Haiti. Our objectives are to provide immediate trauma relief to the affected population and aid workers, and to mobilize young adults of Haiti by establishing the Nouvelle Vie Youth Corps, a body of 50 Haitian youth committed to serving their country for 2 years. The Youth Corps will receive the training and support necessary to take leadership roles in serving the Haitian people, developing powerful skills in trauma relief, food and water security, and appropriate technology and construction. Nouvelle Vie will provide training and financial, material, and programmatic support to the Corps.
In the coming weeks we will send teams of IAHV trauma relief workers to assemble and organize our existing youth leaders, recruit additional youth leaders, and deliver trauma relief programs. Through participation in organizing and delivering these programs, we will train our Youth Corps to deliver trauma relief services, and to become fully certified teachers of The Art Of Living Foundation’s stress-reduction and self-development programs. Youth Corps members will also receive on-ground training in implementation of small-scale home and community gardens, design and construction of rainwater catchment and sanitation systems (composting toilets), and appropriate building design and construction. Basic training will be conducted at the Youth Corps headquarters by training leaders who are expert in the area of sustainable design and permaculture, with extensive experience in developing world urban and peri-urban design. While basic training is taking place, Corps members and training leaders will developprojects to install garden, sanitation, water, and building systems to support IDP settlements, households, communities, and organizations.
One of the components of our strategy is the translation of the IDEP Permaculture Resource Manual into French/Haitian Creole in oder to provide accessible local tools to those who will be rebuilding their communities.  We expect to support this process with permaculture related trainings and workshops.
For any of you wishing to be involved in this effort, through donation, direct involvement or for consideration as part of the team, I recommend that you keep up with the program via the IAHV website (www.iahv.org), or through direct contact with Joshua Tosteson: jlt94(at)post.harvard.edu
You can access IDEP’s English permaculture and community disaster management reources as free downloads from the IDEP site, they have been developed following extensive community rebuilding experiences in East Timor and Aceh, Indonesia: http://www.idepfoundation.org/idep_downloads.html#b
For those of you wanting more detailed and technically oriented reports and updates on Haiti, I recommend the site: http://www.reliefweb.org
Lastly, the Haiti earthquake serves to remind us of the importance of disaster preparedness for all of us so that we can be effective in response when disaster strikes.  I have 8 pages of disaster preparedness notes for download at my nascent website: http://www.ajventure.com
They are currently being posted, should be up by Jan 21, otherwise – check back soon!
Best wishes,                                                 [tweetmeme]
Andrew Jones
Synergy Life Design
Skype: ajventure

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