Cash transfer helps families hard hit by the August 2021 earthquake recovery – Haiti – ReliefWeb

Thousands of households lost all their belongings during the earthquake last year. They benefited from the cash transfer to cope.
Ndiaga Seck
When the earthquake hit last year, Jacquelin Favot literally lost control. He spent long nights outside with his mother, wife and five children.
“My house collapsed during the earthquake. We lived on the street, under a tree. There was nowhere else to stay. Our house was no longer habitable,” he says.
Favot lives in Fonds d’Icaque, a peaceful little hamlet nestled in the heights of Grande Anse. The man is sitting under a big tree in the middle of his compound, a few pineapples that he has just cut in his field in his hand.
She likes school
Dolcat, her daughter, goes to school a few kilometers away, taking a winding path as a shortcut that only the inhabitants of the village know. The 14-year-old girl reads a story in an already old, but very well-maintained book. She repeated aloud the song of the story that seemed to really please her:
“Little orange tree grows, grows, grows, little orange tree.
No mother-in-law can replace a mother.
Little orange tree grows, grows.
In reality, Dolcat loves school. She finds her well-being there. She continues to read in her book:
“It’s the story of a little girl who lost her mother at birth, I must tell you that this child had neither brother nor sister. Despite her young age, she had to do all the chores around the house. She saw an orange tree and at the same time, she started to sing.”
She hums the story song again. Perhaps this reminds her of her own story, when she stood there, helpless, at the extent of the damage the earthquake had caused.
“Little orange tree grows, grows, grows, little orange tree.
No mother-in-law can replace a mother.
Little orange tree grows, grows.”
Although the earthquake struck while Haitian children were on school vacation, Dolcat almost lost her studies because she was among the hardest hit. “After the earthquake, we had to face many difficulties. We had to spend the night in the open and our parents couldn’t afford to help us,” she says with a heavy heart.
Vulnerable households further impoverished by the earthquake
The earthquake that disrupted the life of the Favot family is of magnitude 7.2 which struck the southwestern region of Haiti on 14 August 2021, leaving thousands of people in need of food, water, sanitation, hygiene and shelter. According to official data, the earthquake affected 800,000 people, including 340,000 children, killed more than 2,200 and injured 12,700. It also damaged or destroyed 115,000 homes, 97 health institutions and 1,250 schools in the departments of the South, Nippes and Grand’Anse.
Many vulnerable families have become further impoverished, and some of them were targeted by a cash transfer program implemented by UNICEF and its partner, the NGO Care International. In his memories, Favot still hears his phone ringing that the transfer has arrived.
“I received the notification while I was working in my garden. When I heard the phone ring “bling!”, I checked my account balance, I had just received money on my phone! I was so happy!”, he says.
With funding from the Global Partnership for Education (GPE) and the United Nations Multi-Partner Trust Fund (MPTF) for the fight against COVID-19, UNICEF has provided additional income to 1,000 vulnerable families hard hit by the earthquake. land in southwestern Haiti, through multipurpose cash transfers, to help them access basic services.
As soon as he received the cash, Favot rushed to pay the school and medical expenses of his children. “I owed money for my children’s school fees. I was able to pay part of it so that they could continue to go to school. But they were also affected by typhoid fever and malaria. So, I used what was left to take them to the clinic”.
Favot is a responsible father who knew how to use the financial assistance he received wisely, by prioritizing access to the rights of his children, while working to restore family well-being. He has even greater ambitions to form a cooperative with his neighboring farmers and produce more, to earn more. As for Dolcat, she cherishes the dream of doing at least three jobs after her studies.
“I would like to become an agronomist, then study to be a nurse. I would also like to be a teacher,” she says.
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