Youth work op­por­tu­nity to trans­form lives in Haiti

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - OPINION - BY DERRICK BISO Derrick Biso is a mem­ber of the In­ter­na­tional Sus­tain­able Com­mu­nity As­sis­tance (ISCA-AIDC) or­ga­ni­za­tion, based in P.E.I. which of­fers an op­por­tu­nity for Cana­dian youth to travel and work in­ter­na­tion­ally

For many young peo­ple the idea of get­ting work that makes a pos­i­tive dif­fer­ence in the world seems like a pipe dream when they con­sider the high rate of youth un­em­ploy­ment and the dearth of pro­ject money for com­mu­nity de­vel­op­ment, or for that mat­ter just plain jobs.

That is why, says Lloyd Dalziel, Pres­i­dent of the in­ter­na­tional de­vel­op­ment or­ga­ni­za­tion ISCA, the op­por­tu­nity be­ing of­fered by his or­ga­ni­za­tion to young peo­ple to work in Haiti on a sus­tain­able agri­cul­ture pro­ject is so ex­cit­ing.

This fall, ISCA (In­ter­na­tional Sus­tain­able Com­mu­nity As­sis­tance) is of­fer­ing an op­por­tu­nity for two At­lantic Cana­dian youths to work in Haiti for six months.

The Char­lot­te­town-based non-profit or­ga­ni­za­tion is cur­rently ac­cept­ing ap­pli­ca­tions from Cana­dian cit­i­zens un­der the age of 30 to learn about and sup­port the de­vel­op­ment of a sus­tain­able poul­try pro­ject in the Ter­rier Rouge re­gion of Haiti.

In 2013 the de­vel­op­ment or­ga­ni­za­tion in­tro­duced a unique small scale poul­try pro­ject in the Zo­r­anger re­gion north­east of Port au Prince that has caught the at­ten­tion of many Haitian com­mu­ni­ties and in­ter­na­tional de­vel­op­ment or­ga­ni­za­tions.

“The suc­cess of the model lies not only in the ap­pro­pri­ate in­fra­struc­ture size and de­sign, it also comes from the ini­tial train­ing of par­tic­i­pants in ar­eas such as mar­ket­ing, small busi­ness man­age­ment, the co­op­er­a­tive model, and of course poul­try pro­duc­tion man­age­ment. What is most en­cour­ag­ing is that the Haitian farm­ers now see them­selves as busi­ness peo­ple, man­ag­ing a poul­try op­er­a­tion as a pro­fes­sional busi­ness en­ter­prise,” said Dalziel, the group’s pres­i­dent and pro­ject lead.

He added that noth­ing breeds suc­cess like suc­cess and that it has been very en­cour­ag­ing for ISCA to find, in a re­cent fol­lowup visit to Zo­r­anger, that 5 out of the 6 poul­try farm­ers are op­er­at­ing suc­cess­fully with­out any ad­di­tional aid from his or­ga­ni­za­tion.

In a re­cent pre­sen­ta­tion to an NGO fo­cused on pro­vid­ing char­i­ta­ble sup­port to des­ti­tute fam­i­lies in a va­ri­ety of sites around the world Dalziel stated that the work and ap­proach of ISCA rep­re­sents the cut­ting edge of in­ter­na­tional de­vel­op­ment in a post CEDA (Cdn Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment Agency) world.

In the past the Cana­dian gov­ern­ment spent mil­lions of dol­lars on large in­dus­trial agri­cul­ture so­lu­tions in un­der­de­vel­oped coun­tries as a way of lift­ing com­mu­ni­ties out of poverty.

He says that smaller more lo­cally fo­cused sus­tain­able agri­cul­ture us­ing tech­nol­ogy and train­ing that fits the lo­cal con­text is now be­ing seen as the way for­ward in in­ter­na­tional de­vel­op­ment, es­pe­cially in the agri­cul­ture sec­tor.

More in­for­ma­tion about ISCA’s work can be found at www.isca-aidc.ca.

Ap­pli­ca­tions for the in­tern­ships can be ac­cessed at www.acic-caci.org/in­tern­ships/

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