You might know Haiti for its breathtaking beaches, crystal blue waters and picture-postcard Caribbean vibes – but what we know Haiti for is our tree planting projects.
In the first of our tree planting project blogs, we’re heading all the way to the Caribbean to look at why tree planting is so crucial in Haiti and what our tree planting projects and partners are achieving in this stunning destination.
Haiti key facts
Haiti is a country in the Caribbean Sea that includes western Hispaniola and smaller islands such as Vache, Grande Caye, Torque and Gonâve.
Key facts about Haiti include:
- Official name: Republic of Haiti
- Capital: Port-au-Prince
- Languages: French, Haitian, Creole
- Area: 27,750 KM2
- Population: 11,439,646
- Climate: tropical.
Haiti was also the second country in the Americas (after the US) to free itself from colonial rule.
Why tree planting projects are so important in Haiti
When you first start thinking of planting trees for your business or to offset your personal carbon footprint, the first thing that springs to mind is a UK tree planting project.
And while planting trees in your local community is great (and encouraged), you might want to consider an international tree planting project too.
Well, for example, Haiti is one of the world’s most deforested countries. It has reportedly less than 1% of its original primary forest left, with 84% of its highest and largest mountains having none left at all.
This has devastating consequences for the country, particularly for its wildlife. Haiti is believed to carry the world’s largest concentration of endemic amphibians, but without a natural habitat to support them and other biodiversity, Haiti is facing mass distinction over the next 20 years.
Not only does planting trees and reforesting Haiti help protect its wildlife and biodiversity, but tree planting in Haiti helps improve:
- Soil health – preventing erosion and consequential flooding.
- Water purity – filtering rainfall to reduce groundwater contamination.
- Flood protection – increasing topsoil that holds onto rainwater and reduces the amount flowing into rivers.
- Weather patterns – helping reduce the impact of natural disasters.
- Food security – providing communities with mango and avocado trees and other food sources.
How did Haiti lose so many of its trees?
The reasons behind Haiti’s forest depreciation is a hotly debated and contested topic. However, the main cited reasons for mass deforestation in Haiti include:
- The clearing of the land for slave plantations in the 17th century.
- Modern agriculture and charcoal production.
- Natural disasters such as the 2021 earthquake.
Whatever the reason, it’s clear that Haiti needs more trees just as much as the planet does to absorb carbon dioxide, support wildlife and benefit the earth alongside local communities.
The MoreTrees Haiti tree planting project
So, how can you help?
Haiti is one of the MoreTrees tree planting projects, meaning that you can plant trees in the country for just £1 – helping Haiti while offsetting your carbon footprint.
Our tree planting partner in Haiti works directly with the local community to plant and protect trees through to maturity.
This project spans two different areas and goals:
- Mangrove reforestation and restoration in the coastal area of southern Haiti
- Agro-forestry support (including citrus, papaya and mango trees) in south east Haiti.
Not only do these projects support reforestation, but they also provide skills, work, income and food for some of the world’s most poverty-stricken areas.
Recent news from the field
Thankfully, all of our tree planting partners are safe and uninjured by tropical storm Laura, who hit the country in August.
Tropical storms such as these show how important it is to restore natural weather patterns by planting trees, and working with tree planting partners that are implementing further strategies to protect nurseries and seedlings from natural disasters.
Our partners are expanding their teams by employing and training local villagers to help monitor and improve tree planting practices, survival rates, and protections.
They’re also working hard to increase nursery capacity by hundreds of thousands and establish a new agroforestry nursery.
How to plant a tree in Haiti
If you’d like to join our Haiti tree planting project and plant trees for your business, customers, clients or self, then simply sign up to the platform and select Haiti when planting your trees.
It’s as simple as three clicks.
And if you’d like to know more about this or any other of our tree planting projects in the UK or across the world, get in touch.