Report 09. Socio-cultural factors in Haitian agroforestry: research results from four regions
Starr, Paul D.
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DescriptionThe Haiti Agroforestry Research Project was a program to encourage Haitian farmers to plant fast growing trees as a cash crop. This project was part of an overall plan by USAID to curb the devastating erosion which was washing the top soil into the sea.
This report presents the results of research on socio-cultural aspects of agroforestry in the Des Forges, Bassin Bleu, Vialet and Maniche areas of Haiti. A total of 258 households were surveyed, 108 in Bassin Bleu and fifty each in the other locales. Most respondents were male heads of households in their forties. Having one or more literate persons in a household wsa common. Many households included people who had skills and who earned income which depended entirely on wood or wood products. Water and services (medical care, transport, markets) were often lengthy walks from respondents' farms. Schools and churches were more accessible and have good potential for use in extension activities. Radio listening was the most popular leisure activity. Radio is a good medium for extension messages. Tools are in very short supply. Increasing tool availability and use would produce at least a slight increase in farm production. Statistics concerning housing, household utensils and farm animals owned are provided. Of the types of agroforestry in use, mixed ("melanj") was the most common, followed by living fences, hedgerows with crops, and hedgerows without crops. Tree lots were rare and many farmers were not familiar with hedgerow techniques. More than half of the farmers belonged to a "kombit" or cooperative work group. Crops were by far the most common source of income, followed by animals. Less than one in twenty had charcoal as a primary income source, and all were in the Des Forges area. More than half reported consumption of purchased wood products. The average expenditure per purchasing household per year was remarkably high, about US$100. Nearly four out of five were participating in an agroforestry program. Participants gave the programs a very strong vote of confidence, with more than nine out of ten indicating that they would participate again. A majority reported that controlling erosion was their primary motive. More than nine out of ten replied that they would plant more trees if they could. Their greatest barrier was their lack of land. The largest proportion of respondents reported that their most important non-agroforestry need was for a source of income. The regions differed from one another in various respects. Pronounced regional differences were manifest in households' main source of income, with charcoal production and non-farm income being concentrated in two different regions. Charcoal purchases sharply differed by region. Kombit membership was high in Des Forges and Maniche and lowest in Vialet. Perceptions of development needs differed by region, as did household skills, motives for practicing agroforestry, utensils and perceptions of the barriers preventing its expansion. Few significant differences were manifest among participating and non-participating respondents. The pattern of these differences suggests that participants are less traditionally oriented, are more careful farmers, and tend to be more prosperous than non-participants. Research findings are used to make a number of recommendations for project implementation.Rapo sa-a prézanté rézilta rechèch sou aspè socio-kiltirèl agroforestri nan Des Forges, Bassin Bleu, Vialet é Maniche. Yo té kestyoné 258 mèt kay, 108 nan Bassin Bleu é 50 nan chak lot ki gen karant ané. Nan kay yo, té répon-yo cé chef fanmi gason ki gen karant ané. Nan kay yo, té gen yon ou plis moun ki konn' li. Ampil nan kay-yo gen moun ki gen métyé é ki fè kob sou bwa ou produi bwa. Dlo ak dispansè, transpo, maché pa pwé té moun kap répon. Lékol é Légliz té pi facil pou rivé é yo kapab sèvi pou fè lot aktivité. Kouté radio cé pi gwo distraktyon. Radio cé yon bon moyen pou enseyman. Pa gen ampil zouti. Plis zouti ta édé ogmanté prodiktyon sou tè-yo. Infomatyon sou kay, zouti kay ak bèt tou disponib. Agroforestry ki plis sèvi cé mélanj ak ramp vivan avek é san kilti. Pa gen ampil lot pyébwa é kiltivatè-yo pa konnin teknik ramp vivan-an. Plis ké mwatié kiltivatè-yo nan kombit ou nan travay cooperativ. Cé kilti ki rapoté plis kob, an apwé cé bèt. Moins ké yon moun nan 20 gen chabon kom prémié sous lajan é tout cé nan Des Forges yo rété. Plis ké mwatyé achté pwodui bwa. Dépans moyenn pa kay chak ané té trè ro, prèské $100.00. Sou 5 moun 4 tap paticipé nan yon program agroforestri. Paticipan yo té positif sou program yo é 9 sou 10 té di ké yo ta dako pou paticipé anko. Majorité té di ké, sé ewozion ki fè yo plis anvi paticipé. Ampil di yo ta planté plis pyébwa si yo té kapab mè yo manké tè. Pi gwo nécésité moun-yo cé lajan. Chak réjyon diferannan plisiè sans. Sak entrékob nan pwodui chabon é sak entré kob nan travay andéyo rété nan yon lot zon. Nan chak réjyon té gen diferans nan kantitié chabon ki té achté. Ampil moun té nan kombit nan Des Forges ak Maniche é cé Vialet ki té gen moins moun. Moun chak zon wè bezwen yo nan fason pa yo. Chak genyen métié pa yo, rézon pa yo pou entré nan agroforestri é zouti pa yo. Yo tout wè pwoblèm expansyon-an jan pa yo. Pa gen ampil diférans nan mounki paticipé nan pwojè-a aksak pa paticipé. Sèl diférans impotan sé té paticipan-yo pi a la mod é yo té pran plis swen jadin-yo pacé sak pa paticipé-yo. Sak té paticipé-yo té fè plis kob. A pati rezilta sa-yo pliziè rekomandasyon té fèt pou aktivé pwojè-a.