Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Hope for Farmers After Hurricane Matthew

Samaritan's Purse agriculture

Samaritan's Purse staff members with local farmers

Rural families who lost their livelihoods receive seeds from Samaritan’s Purse.

Lacul is a small community in western Haiti near the Samaritan’s Purse base. In this community, there are a lot of farmers, and by the end of the spring season, the green valleys are normally full of crops. Last year, after Hurricane Mathew struck Haiti, farmers from Lacul lost everything. Hurricane Matthew destroyed all their winter crops and banana fields, and farmers lost hope of a spring harvest.

From February to April, small-scale farmers in Lacul faced a critical period. They had food shortages and couldn’t afford field labor and agriculture planting materials. The farmers were sad and wondered how they would be able to support their families without a harvest. The storm had destroyed all their hopes and dreams.

The leader of the community of Lacul reached out to Samaritan’s Purse to ask for help for the farmers. In collaboration with government officials and local leaders, Samaritan’s Purse provided 1.9 metric tons of black bean seeds to 127 farmers in Lacul. Now that it’s the beginning of the spring season, farmers are starting to plant again. They felt supported and finally started to see hope after the storm. In two months, the harvest should be ready, and the farmers will be able to provide for their families again.

I think that giving planting packages to small-scale farmers at the beginning of the spring season is one of the bigger gifts you can offer a farmer. Most of these rural families rely on farming to live. I felt blessed to have the opportunity to distribute these seeds. Now the farmers praise Jesus for the help they received from Samaritan’s Purse.

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Carolyn Julien

Frederick, this is awesome work! I am reminded of the paraphrased saying, “if you give me a fish, I will eat to the fish run out, but if you teach me how to fish I can catch my own and eat for a lifetime.” I know that Jeremie & Les Cayes are suffering immeasurably since the hurricane and many residents continue to go hungry in spite of the mass food distributions in the areas; are there similar programs (like yours) to help the residents in those devastated areas produce their own crops too?

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